A Closer Look at the Songs of Zion: Send Hunters and Fishers

by | Mar 3, 2023 | Music & Singalongs | 2 comments

While many of us have a favorite hymn from the beautifully inspired hymns of praise that have touched our hearts and brought tears to our eyes, The Songs of Zion are unique to our Church. They are songs that belong to a new time; they belong to a new era; they belong to our people. They are songs sent from the throne of God as a gift to The Church of Jesus Christ. They are inspirational and related to Christ and His promises of the latter-day times and events. This gift was given to our late Sister Arlene Buffington, as our songs of hope and joy, looking forward to the fulfillment of the kingdom of Zion, bathed in the latter-day glory of the restoration.

Today I’d like to consider No 3, “Send Hunters and Fishers,”  by looking at the meaning and application of the song, because it’s too easy to sing without paying attention to the words and their meaning.



There are a people, a lost, hidden people, 

Fallen in darkness, and fallen in tears. 

But God will reclaim them, and He will reown them, 

Tho they’ve been scattered and driven for years.


These are God’s people, and He loves His people. 

He will send hunters and fishers one day. 

To climb ev’ry hilltop and hunt ev’ry valley, 

Fish ev’ry river, and search ev’ry bay.


God has a people, a forgotten people, 

They have a country and they have a name, 

But He will remember and send hunters for them, 

Clothe them with blessings and cover their shame.


Call out the hunters and fishers to find them. 

Fish with the sunlight, and hunt with the moon, 

And run thru the caves and the rocks that surround them. 

Bring back My people, oh, bring them home soon.


Oh, send hunters to hunt them, and fishers to fish them, 

Gather My people wherever they be.

Yes, send hunters to hunt them and fishers to fish them, 

Hunt ev’ry mountain and fish ev’ry sea.

©1980 Arlene Lea Buffington

Rather than comment on each verse, let’s simply see what the Word of God says regarding sending hunters and fishers, who they’re being sent to, and what the end result will be [with a few of my own comments in italics], remembering that while the Songs of Zion are not scripture, we are using the Word to support this hymn. 

Looking at 2 Nephi 25:

[1] Now I, Nephi, do speak somewhat concerning the words which I have written, which have been spoken by the mouth of Isaiah. For behold, Isaiah spake many things which were hard for many of my people to understand… 

[7] But behold, I proceed with mine own prophecy, according to my plainness… 

[11-13] And now this I speak because of the spirit which is in me. And notwithstanding they [the children of the House of Israel] have been carried away they shall return again, and possess the land of Jerusalem; wherefore, they shall be restored again to the land of their inheritance. But, behold, [before they are restored] they shall have wars, and rumors of wars; and when the day cometh that the Only Begotten of the Father [Jesus], yea, even the Father of heaven and of earth, shall manifest himself unto them in the flesh, behold, they will reject him, [Jesus was rejected by his own people] because of their iniquities, and the hardness of their hearts, and the stiffness of their necks. Behold, they will crucify him; and after he is laid in a sepulchre for the space of three days he shall rise from the dead, with healing in his wings; and all those who shall believe on his name shall be saved in the kingdom of God….

[14-15] And behold it shall come to pass that after the Messiah hath risen from the dead, and hath manifested himself unto his people, unto as many as will believe on his name [this in the land of Israel, those in the Americas, and to those other sheep], behold, Jerusalem shall be destroyed again; for wo unto them that fight against God and the people of his church. Wherefore, the Jews shall be scattered among all nations; yea, and also Babylon shall be destroyed; wherefore, the Jews shall be scattered by other nations. [The Judean population revolted against the Roman Empire, which resulted in the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD, including the Temple and most of Jerusalem. This elimination of the symbolic center of Judaism and their identity motivated many to disperse across Europe, Asia, and beyond.]

[16-17] And after they have been scattered, and the Lord God hath scourged them by other nations for the space of many generations, [consider the holocaust or genocide of 6 million European Jews during World War II] yea, even down from generation to generation until they shall be persuaded to believe in Christ, the Son of God, and the atonement, which is infinite for all mankind — and when that day shall come [it’s beginning to occur] that they shall believe in Christ, and worship the Father in his name, with pure hearts and clean hands, and look not forward any more for another Messiah, then, at that time, the day will come that it must needs be expedient that they should believe these things. And the Lord will set his hand again the second time [starting with the House of Joseph] to restore his people from their lost and fallen state. Wherefore, he will proceed to do a marvelous work and a wonder among the children of men.

[21] Wherefore, for this cause hath the Lord God promised unto me that these things which I write shall be kept and preserved, [the Book of Mormon] and handed down unto my seed, from generation to generation, that the promise may be fulfilled unto Joseph, that his seed should never perish as long as the earth should stand.

[26] And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.

[29] And now behold, I say unto you that the right way is to believe in Christ, and deny him not; and Christ is the Holy One of Israel; wherefore ye must bow down before him, and worship him with all your might, mind, and strength, and your whole soul; and if ye do this ye shall in nowise be cast out.

And the prophet Jeremiah states in chapter 16:

[15] But, The Lord… that brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the lands whither he had driven them: [speaking of the dispersion or scattering of Israel, including those we know of (the Jews and Joseph, Native peoples of the Americas) and also those that are still “lost” or hidden to us] and I will bring them again into their land that I gave unto their fathers. 

[how will this be done?]

[16] Behold, I will send for many fishers, saith the Lord, and they shall fish them; and after will I send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain, and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks. [we represent the hunters and fishers—yes, you and I!!! ]

17 For mine eyes are upon all their ways: they are not hid from my face, neither is their iniquity hid from mine eyes. [because the Lord NEVER forgets His promises and covenants]

And Jesus said this [in red letters] 3 Nephi 20:

[29] And I will remember the covenant which I have made with my people; and I have covenanted with them that I would gather them together in mine own due time… 

[30-31] And it shall come to pass that the time cometh, when the fullness of my gospel shall be preached unto them; [that time is NOW].  And they shall believe in me, that I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and shall pray unto the Father in my name.

[35-36; 40] The Father hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of the Father; and the Father and I are one. And then shall be brought to pass that which is written: Awake, awake again, and put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem… And then shall they say: How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings unto them, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings unto them of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion: Thy God reigneth!

This is why we seek to fulfill the divine commission of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ—to draw Israel to Christ through efforts focused on the indigenous peoples of North, Central, and South America, that by starting with Joseph, the remaining descendants of Israel and Gentiles will be gathered such that the words of the prophets and Jesus may be fulfilled. 

This article has undergone ministry review and approval.



  1. anonymous

    The Indigenous people of North America said that they hear drums in this song.

  2. anonymous

    Some Indigenous members of The Church hear drums in this song.


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