Posted in Ancient Near East Antiquity Arabia Arabian Peninsula Book of Mormon Evidence Faith Problems Scholarship

Further Thoughts on Nephi’s Three-Day Journey: Going the Distance with Google Earth

My recent post on Nephi’s three-day journey, the leg of Lehi’s Trail that reaches the River Laman in the Valley of Lemuel, discussed the significance of Exodus themes in Nephi’s…

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Posted in Arabia Book of Mormon Evidence Origins Problems Scholarship

Nephi’s Three-day Journey into the Wilderness: The Natural vs. the Naturalistic Reading

Of the many interesting details in Nephi’s description of his journey through the Arabian Peninsula, one of the first comes after his mention of reaching the “borders” of the Red…

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Posted in abortion Book of Mormon Christianity freedom Problems Secret Combinations Social Issues Society War

The Rapid Fall of Nephite Society: Another Book of Mormon Weakness Begins to Make More Sense

  As I saw troubling reports and videos this week of students at the once-great Harvard University and other major universities harassing Jewish students for being Jewish or chanting in…

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Book of Mormon
Posted in Atonement Book of Mormon Doctrine Gospel of Jesus Christ Grace Jesus Christ language Problems Salvation

Saved by Grace “After All We Can Do”? Nephi’s Context of Reconciliation

2 Nephi 25:23 has the statement, “for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.” Does this mean that salvation is a chore in which we do much of the work, or a transaction in which we pay as much of the price as we can, and Christ only steps in after all we have done or paid to make up the difference? Or does this actually mean that salvation is completely “apart from” if not unrelated to all that we can do? Or something else? I think a plausible answer comes through considering the context. 

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Posted in Book of Mormon Books Doctrine Evidence history Origins Problems Repentance Scholarship Scripture Translation

A Simple Example from the Book of Mormon Showing Why Scholarship Is Needed

Many Latter-day Saints seem unaware of the great body of scholarship that can strengthen faith and understanding for members of the Church and those exploring it. Such scholarship can be…

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Posted in Book of Mormon Evidence history Origins Problems Scholarship Translation

New Scholarship on the Influence of the Small Plates on Mormon’s Writings

One of the things that fascinates me in my role as a co-editor for the Interpreter Foundation’s journal, Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship, is seeing how…

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Posted in Ancient Near East Antiquity Asia Book of Mormon Critics Evidence Origins Problems

Plagiarism Made Harder, or, The Book of Ether and the Genius of Joseph’s Plagiarism

Students of the Book of Mormon have long noted that the brief book of Ether is quite different in its content and style than the rest of the Book of…

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Posted in Book of Mormon Evidence Problems Scholarship Science

An Update, Barely, on Barley

A Dec. 23, 2019 news release from Washington University in St. Louis reports new research results about the “lost crops” of North America that could have been more productive than…

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Posted in Ancient Near East Book of Mormon Evidence language Origins Problems

Romancing the Rio Wreck: Evidence for Ancient Transoceanic Contact in the Americas vs. a Romantic Notion of Peer Review

As a Ph.D. linguist providing his peer-review of Brian Stubbs’ work on linguistic evidence of ancient Old World contact with the Americas as evidence by the Uto-Aztecan language family, Dr….

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Posted in Book of Mormon Problems Translation

Feeling Blue About the Red Sea in the Book of Mormon?

Criticism about the Book of Mormon’s references to the Red Sea came up in some recent comments, so I thought I’d share a couple of perspectives that might be helpful…

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