At the April 1976 general conference, Elder Spencer W. Kimball reviewed Daniel's interpretation of King Nebuchadnezzar's dream:
"Nebuchadnezzar represented the king of kings, a world power, representing the head of gold. Another kingdom would arise and take over world dominion."The interpretation included the domination of other kingdoms. Cyrus the great, with his Medes and Persians, would be replaced by the Greek or Macedonian kingdom under Philip and Alexander; and that world power would be replaced by the Roman Empire; and Rome would be replaced by a group of nations of Europe represented by the toes of the image.
"With the history of the world delineated in brief, now came the real revelation. Daniel said:
" `And in the days of these kings [that is, the group of European nations] shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.
" `Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.' " (Dan. 2:44-45.)
Elder Kimball explained: "This is a revelation concerning the history of the world, when one world power would supersede another until there would be numerous smaller kingdoms to share the control of the earth. And it was in the days of these kings that power would not be given to men, but the God of heaven would set up a kingdom - the kingdom of God upon the earth, which should never be destroyed nor left to other people."
Elder Kimball continued: "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was restored in 1830 after numerous revelations from the divine source; and this is the kingdom, set up by the God of heaven, that would never be destroyed nor superseded, and the stone cut out of the mountain without hands that would become a great mountain and would fill the whole earth. . . .
"No king or set of rulers could divine this history; but a young, pure, and worthy prophet could receive a revelation from God.
"There was purpose for this unveiling of the history of the world so that the honest in heart might be looking forward to its establishment, and numerous good men and women, knowing of the revelations of God and the prospects for the future, have looked forward to this day."
Elder Kimball outlined highlights of the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and then said: "These were the beginnings of accomplishment; and the gospel was revealed, line upon line and precept upon precept, and truths were restored, and power was given and authority was revealed, and gradually enough light and enough people were there for the organization of this kingdom of God which Daniel saw two and a half millennia ago.
"The Church was organized. Small it was, with only six members, compared to the stone cut out of the mountain without hands which would break in pieces other nations and which would roll forth and fill the whole earth. . . .
"[Missionaries] proclaim these truths to thousands of people in their home areas. The gospel spreads to the nations of the earth in its approach toward the promise made by God through Daniel to fill the whole earth, and numerous people of all nationalities and tongues are accepting the gospel in many nations, and the Church and kingdom grow and develop, and we say to you and testify to you that it shall, in Daniel's words, `never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people . . . but it shall stand forever.' " (Dan 2:44.)
Growth of the Church
6 April 1830
Members of the Church: 6
Languages with published editions of the Book of Mormon: 1
Temples in operation: 0
Members of the Church: 133,628
Languages with published editions of the Book of Mormon: 10
Temples in operation: 1
Members of the Church: 670,017
Languages with published editions of the Book of Mormon: 16
Temples in operation: 7
Members of the Church: 4,639,822
Languages with published editions of the Book of Mormon: 44
Temples in operation: 19
October 31, 1998
Members of the Church: 10,400,000
Languages with published editions of the Book of Mormon: 91*
Temples in operation: 53
Total temples in operation, under construction and announced: 98
*Number includes complete texts and partial translations and is revised from information published in the Old Testament Gospel Doctrine Teacher's Manual as of 1995.