Every week we publish a complimentary study guide for the LDS Gospel Doctrine class. This in-depth guide thoughtfully broaches topics, ideas, and questions that most likely are not addressed in most Sunday School classes.

Scripture as Totem: Religion and the Importance of the Text

It is easily recognized that throughout the history of religious traditions texts have served an important role in the continued conceptualization and endurance of the individual faith traditions.[1] In the history of studies on religion, monographs, essays, articles, and books have mostly focused on attempting to interpret these...

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The Authorship of Isaiah and Its Bearing on the Book of Mormon

Scholars today recognize that the full text of Isaiah was not written by a single individual named Isaiah in the latter half of the eighth century BCE, but rather that the text was written by at least two, and more probably three, individual authors spanning a period of about four centuries. Generally scholars identify chapters 1-39...

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Drowning at church

This essay is a response to the First Presidency’s recent statements that encourage open discussion of hard questions at church. It is co-written by Jenn Kunz and Lori Burkman; two sisters who grew up as faithful Mormons in a literal-believing family. Upon reaching maturity and starting to teach the gospel and restoration to...

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Repurposing Sunday School

This post must begin by acknowledging the current events regarding the excommunication of Kate Kelly. Regardless of how you feel about the excommunication, we should all be mourning together. We should all be grieving. We should all follow our baptismal covenant to comfort each other and bear each other’s burdens. We need to...

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The Young Women (lessons) are a Changin’

So today I was browsing the ol’ book of Faces, when I saw a link to a Google doc done by Laura Compton comparing the Young Women’s manual from June of 2013 to June of 2014.  The lessons are on the priesthood. The changes are pretty fascinating, especially since church correlations and corrections usually attempt to be...

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How the Ancients Read the Bible

By Sheldon Greaves, Ph.D. One of the things that creates problems when we modern folks try our hand at reading an ancient document is we automatically assume certain things about what that ancient text means, but also the role it played in its original context. Ancient peoples had certain expectations of their written works, and...

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The King James Version in the Book of Moses, Part 4

This is Part 4 of the series locating the extent of dependence of the Book of Moses on the text of the KJV Genesis. You can see Part 1 here,  Part 2 here, and Part 3 here. All of these posts are based on the textual analysis of Kent P. Jackson, The Book of Moses and the Joseph Smith Translation Manuscripts (Provo: Religious...

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The King James Bible in the Book of Moses, Part 2

This is Part 2 of the series locating the extent of the dependence of the Book of Moses on the text of the KJV Genesis. You can see Part 1 here. Like Part 1, the text of the OT2 Moses is taken from Kent P. Jackson, The Book of Moses and the Joseph Smith Translation Manuscripts (Provo: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young...

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The King James Bible in the Book of Moses, Part I

With the recent publication of David Bokovoy’s Authoring the Old Testament: Genesis-Deuteronomy, many have wondered to what extent the Bible has had influence on the Book of Moses. The discussion has mainly revolved around the parts of the text that are obvious revisions of the Genesis creation chapters (Genesis 1, 2-3) that...

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Tamar’s Fight

By Sheldon Greaves, Ph.D. Genesis 38 tells a strange story, set in a foreign culture that carries resonance because in the end, it is both a story of survival and of justice. Briefly stated, it is the story of Tamar, the daughter in law of Judah. She was married to Er, the firstborn son of Judah, but before they had any children Er...

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