Category: Scriptures

Reconsidering the Curse of Cain

Eugene England once shared an experience he had with the prominent Latter-day Saint Church leader, scriptorian, and doctrinaire Joseph Fielding Smith.  President Smith had written extensively on the subject of the priesthood and temple ban against individuals of black African…

The Metaphysics of Translation

Understanding the nature of Joseph Smith’s translation efforts is an important part of understanding his ministry and the religions that have emerged from the early Latter Day Saint movement.  Whether the Book of Mormon, the Joseph Smith Translation of the…

Saving Alvin

How we approach the scriptures affects what we see in them. In other words, our assumptions, our traditions, our cultural baggage that we carry with us as we enter the world of scriptural texts are lenses that give meaning and…

Revisiting Sherem

Many of my choices in books this year have been influenced by a decision to try and catch up on literature about the Book of Mormon.  I feel a bit overwhelmed, to be honest, since there’s a lot out there…

Laban… as a Christ Figure?

This Holy Week I’ve been monitoring my employer’s livestreamed Roman Catholic masses and services, meaning that I (for the first time) attended a Holy Thursday mass and a Good Friday service. So it happened that, during the reading of the…

Bread and Water

In my previous two posts, I discussed questions relating to the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. Another question my friend asked was: “If you miss the bread do you take the water? … Obviously the best answer for the first…

Why the Sacrament?

For Christians, the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was and is, in the words of one historian, “the central Christian ritual act.”[1] As Latter-day Saints, we participate in the breaking of bread and drinking of water on an almost weekly…

On Not Understanding the Atonement

There are some pretty major aspects of our Latter-day Saint faith–and of Christianity in general–that I don’t really understand. Specifically: the necessity and efficacy of the Atonement. Repentance and forgiveness make sense to me. The Atonement is a mystery, and…

Disputations in Zion

A couple of weeks ago, we reached the end of 3 Nephi 26 in our family scripture reading. It’s the culmination of Jesus Christ’s ministry to the New World and the founding of Zion. I’ve always been fascinated by Zion,…