Over at Intellectual Exhibitionist, Ryan Bell comments on a topic that I’ve wondered about on occasion:
The Joseph Smith translation is not the official bible of the church. So we still rely on the KJV as the official word. This is exceedingly odd to me– we have one take on the Bible that’s the source of direct revelation to the head of our dispensation, and one that comes from a bunch of medieval scholars, and we go with the latter. Weird, but true.
Exceedingly weird. I have over the years heard some potential rationales (many of which have come up over at Ryan’s blog): We don’t want our missionaries using “non-standard” scriptures for proselytizing; we don’t know how to deal with the incomplete nature of the JST; plus, the church doesn’t own the copyright. None of these have seemed particularly convincing to me. The church’s partial adoption of the JST (“we’ll put some passages in the footnotes, and a few at the end of the index”) seems to be a strange solution as well. After all, doesn’t the JST in theory answer the potential translation problems that are referenced in the Eighth Article of Faith?