“The antithesis and antagonist of Zion is Babylon. The city of Babylon was originally Babel, of Tower of Babel fame, and later became the capital of the Babylonian empire. Its principal edifice was the temple of Bel, or Baal, the idol referred to by Old Testament prophets as ‘The Shame,’ given the sexual perversions that were associated with its worship. (See Bible Dictionary, ‘Assyria and Babylonia,’ 615â€“16; ‘Baal,’ 617â€“18; ‘Babylon, or Babel,’ 618). Its worldliness, its worship of evil, and the captivity of Judah there following the conquest of 587 B.C. all combine to make Babylon the symbol of decadent societies and spiritual bondage.
“It is with this backdrop that the Lord said to the members of His Church, ‘Go ye out of Babylon; gather ye out from among the nations, from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other’ (D&C 133:7). He called for the elders of His Church to be sent forth across the world to accomplish this gathering, commencing an effort that continues in full vigor today. ‘And behold, and lo, this shall be their cry, and the voice of the Lord unto all people: Go ye forth unto the land of Zion, that the borders of my people may be enlarged, and that her stakes may be strengthened, and that Zion may go forth unto the regions round about’ (D&C 133:9).”