Was a restoration of the Gospel necessary?

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Nothing less than a complete apostasy from the Christian religion would warrant the establishment of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”—History of the Church, Volume 1, p. XL

According to LDS Scripture, the Apostle John (D&C 7) and the three Nephites (3 Nephi 28) never died. So, how could Gospel “authority” have left the earth, needing “restoration”?

“…in the latter times some shall depart from the faith…”—1 Timothy 4:1

If only “some” would depart from the faith, how could a “complete apostasy” have occurred? Did Jesus fail to preserve His Church against the gates of hell?

“I will build MY church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” —Matthew 16:18
“…that you should earnestly contend for the faith which was once [for all time] delivered unto the saints.” —Jude 3

“…but though we, or an angel from heaven preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” —Galatians 1:8
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