Control of the Elements

Church Educational System
A tempest, as referred to in 3 Nephi 8:6, is an intense, violent wind. Such a furious storm is often accompanied by rain, hail, or snow and frequently causes destruction over a widespread area.

That God is in control of the elements has been attested to by the scriptures and modern prophets. Elder Bruce R. McConkie wrote about the Lord’s control of earthquakes:

“Since the earth has been in its present fallen or telestial state, it has been subject to earthquakes. These are part of the Lord’s plan; they come by his power and fulfil his purposes. By them he delivers his servants from perils, destroys the wicked, and leaves a sign that his hand has been in transcendent events. (Hela. 12:7–17.)

“Earthquakes attended the delivery from prison of Paul and Silas in the old world, of Lehi and Nephi in the new. (Acts 16:25–26; Hela. 5:27.) Both the crucifixion and the resurrection of our Lord were attested by earthquakes. (Matt. 27:54; 28:2.) Among the Nephites the quakings and destructions at the time of the crucifixion were so extensive that the whole face of the land was changed and the wicked and rebellious were destroyed. (3 Ne. 8; 9:1–14; 10:9–10.)

“Earthquakes are given as one of the signs of the times; they foreshadow the Second Coming. (Matt. 24:7; Mark 13:8; Luke 21:11; D. & C. 45:33; 87:6.) By them the testimony of the Lord’s power is borne to the people of the earth. (D. & C. 43:25; 88:89), and when the glorious Second Coming itself arrives there will be ‘a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great.’ (Rev. 16:18–20; 6:12–17; 8:5; 11:12–15, 19; Zech. 14:4–5; D. & C. 133:22–25.)”

(Mormon Doctrine, pp. 211–12).

Book of Mormon Student Manual (1996 Edition)