Nephi: Almost a Good Man

And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. Mark 10:18 Shortly after my mission I was teaching a Sunday School lesson on 1 Ne 17. Our Stake President had asked us all to memorize the Doctrine and Covenants 121:33-46, and being a dedicated return missionary I had done so (and frankly...

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Review: Royal Skousen and Robin Scott Jensen, eds., The Joseph Smith Papers, Revelations and Translations, Volume 3: Parts 1-2, Printer’s Manuscript of the Book of Mormon

Review: Royal Skousen and Robin Scott Jensen, eds., The Joseph Smith Papers, Revelations and Translations, Volume 3: Parts 1-2, Printer’s Manuscript of the Book of Mormon (Salt Lake City: The Church Historian’s Press, 2015), Part 1, xxxvi+539 pp.; Part 2, 437 pp.   The newest volume in the Revelations and Translations series...

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I’m Sorry Argentina

I’m sorry Argentina. I taught you incorrectly. When I served my mission in Rosario, Argentina 94-96 I misled the people I taught. I feel terrible because I fell in love with the people there. I was treated with kindness and respect. They welcomed me into their homes, we ate together, sung together, prayed together and cried...

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The Unintentional Perpetuation of Racial Prejudice by the LDS Church

 Today, the Church disavows the theories advanced in the past that black skin is a sign of divine disfavor or curse, or that it reflects unrighteous actions in a premortal life; that mixed-race marriages are a sin; or that blacks or people of any other race or ethnicity are inferior in any way to anyone else. Church leaders today...

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Alexander Campbell and Eber D. Howe: Two Early Respondents to the Book of Mormon

Thousands of people have responded to the Book of Mormon (BM) in print, and many thousands more in speech. There were several non-Mormon authors who commented on the book and its use of the King James Bible (KJV) immediately after it was published, and their statements are often left ignored for the simple fact that they wrote...

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Missing Grace

Salvation by grace is all over the Book of Mormon like white on rice. And by grace, I don’t mean the modern Mormon misconception of a little dollop doled out by God after we have done everything we can possibly do. I mean the superabundance of grace God gives us to be saved without our doing anything at all. A grace separate and...

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Look Up and Be Healed!

In II Kings 18:4, King Hezekiah of the Southern Kingdom of Judah tears down the Brazen (Bronze) Serpent Moses had set up. This was in response to the rampant idol worship of the people. The Northern Kingdom of Israel had recently been carried away into captivity by Assyria, never to be heard from again. Assyria also posed an...

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To Progressive LDSs on Book of Mormon Historicity

A common (but not universal) sentiment among progressive Latter-day Saints is that the Book of Mormon is valuable simply because we, as the readers, find moral value in it. It has shaped our lives and history whether or not it is truly a historical record. I think this is largely correct. Some progressives go so far as to say they...

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The Possibility of the Book of Mormon as Inspired Fiction

While critics and apologists of Mormonism disagree with each other on just about every issue, there is one matter in which they often share a moment of agreement –Mormonism rises or falls on the historicity of the Book of Mormon. As Elder Holland proclaimed in a 1994 CES conference at BYU: Not everything in life is so black and...

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Why Columbus Isn’t Who Mormons Want Him to Be

Russell W. Stevenson is the author of For the Cause of Righteousness: A Global History of Blacks and Mormonism, 1830-2013. In October of last year, Deseret Book published Christopher Columbus: A Man Among the Gentiles by Clark B. Hinckley. In the Mormon tradition, Columbus enjoys nothing short of a singular divine mandate as the...

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