The flurry of posts at T&S and elsewhere around the Bloggernacle is a reminder that 2012 is Book of Mormon year in Gospel Doctrine class. Which Book of Mormon are you going to read?
I was re-reading the 12 Questions responses by Grant Hardy on his recent book Understanding the Book of Mormon: A Reader’s Guide [which followed his earlier The Book of Mormon: A Reader's Edition] and came across this comment:
I was pleased by Rosalynde Welch’s observation that the Reader’s Edition is the more important of the two books. I agree. The particular arguments in Understanding will always be subject to debate and revision, but the Reader’s Edition could be a starting point for a new generation of Book of Mormon scholarship.
Responding to a later question, Hardy was even more emphatic: “If you read through the Reader’s Edition, from beginning to end, I guarantee that you too will see things that you have never noticed before.” Since I’ve got a copy of the Reader’s Edition on my shelf, I guess I’ll take the challenge and see whether paragraphing, headings, and helpful footnotes really make a difference.
But there are plenty of other options. There is Signature’s Reader’s Book of Mormon, 7 pocket-size volumes with short introductory essays, very handy to haul around in a backpack or glove compartment. If you’re feeling textual and scholarly, there’s Skousen’s imposing The Book of Mormon: The Earliest Text. If, like me, you feel a little squeamish about putting highlights and notes in your leather-bound Sunday scriptures, you can get a simple blue-cover LDS edition and mark it up to your heart’s content. Then there are online editions. I’ve got Gospel Library (the LDS app) on my iPad and of course there are the LDS scriptures at LDS.org and the terribly useful word search tool.
So which Book of Mormon are you going to read this year? What other references, tools, or apps have you found helpful when reading?