Thinking of the Book of Mormon as the result of a series of textual accretions and combinations might help make sense of how curiously overdetermined the account of Nephite origins is.
Is philological deliberation useful for studying the Book of Mormon? Is it even permitted?
Why is 3 Nephi, which records the central event in the history of Nephite salvation and destruction, located between Helaman and 4 Nephi?
If you trace the history of a text from earlier manuscripts to later ones, it’s not unusual for the text to be extended in various ways.
The material culture of Nephite literacy is the one aspect of Nephite civilization about which we have any kind of historical evidence.
Unless someone gets lucky with a spade or a metal detector, the full extent of Mormon’s sources will remain unknown. To keep even tentative answers on the side of plausibility rather than fantasy, how we think about Mormon’s sources should be informed by any information we have about Nephite literacy and textual culture.
The logical place for a philological approach to the Book of Mormon to begin is with Mormon, its eponymous editor, and his sources. How much did Mormon know about the Nephites, and what kind of records did he have to work with?
When I look at recent studies of the Book of Mormon, the biggest deficit I see is the lack of instinct for philology.
SWOT analysis seems to be something business majors learn their first semester. I’ve never been a business major, but it seems like a reasonable way to start thinking about what the church is facing in these virus-invested times of unknown duration.
They say novel Coronavirus disease is easier on kids, but I’m not sure that’s the case.
For all their differences, the essential and irreducible historical dilemma of the Old Testament, New Testament, and Book of Mormon is very much the same.
To update what Craig wrote in 2010: Times and Seasons is happy to welcome as a guest blogger Steve Smith, who teaches and writes mainly about religious freedom, constitutional law, and jurisprudence. His most recent book is Pagans and Christians…
Don’t bring immanent evidence to a transcendent argument.
Yes. Should historians write about current events? Maybe not. But when they do, they shouldn’t do it like this.
Do not ascribe to fear or compulsion what can be best explained by love.
When I teach Revelation 1-11 to my youth Sunday School class, I’ll probably start off by saying something about gasoline.