Continuing with my introduction to Islam for Latter-day Saints:   The entire twelfth chapter of the Qur’an is devoted to a beauti­ful retelling of the story of Joseph of Egypt. It is the only chapter of the Qur’an that is entirely occupied by a single narrative. The story of Moses is one of the more commonly repeated in the Qur’an.[1]  Saul, David, and Solomon are also mentioned.[2] The Qur’an knows the biblical stories of David and Goliath, as… Read more

    Some notes from John W. Welch, ed., Reexploring the Book of Mormon (Salt Lake City and Provo: Deseret Book and Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies, 1992):   Neither modern speakers of English nor the King James translation of the Bible make much distinction between thieves and robbers.  Anciently, though, and particularly in Hebrew law, the distinction was a strong one:  Thieves were locals who robbed from their neighbors.  They were dealt with civilly, usually by a court… Read more

    Further notes from John W . Welch, et al., eds., Knowing Why: 137 Evidences That the Book of Mormon Is True (American Fork: Covenant Communications, 2017), 51-54:   “Why Would Nephi Call the Ocean ‘Irreantum’?” (51-52) This brief essay lays out two different possible etymologies — one Semitic and one Egyptian — for the Book of Mormon term Irreantum, the first meaning something like “fully abundant waters” and the second meaning approximately “great watercourse of all.”     “Did Ancient People Sail the… Read more

    The latest iteration of the bi-weekly Hamblin/Peterson column has appeared in the Deseret News:   “The African legend of Sundiata and the spread of Islam”   ***   Continuing with my manuscript on Islam for Latter-day Saints:   A personal favorite of mine, however, is a story to which the Qur’an merely alludes, without telling it all in detail. (This is the usual approach of the Qur’an, which frequently refers to stories with which it presumes that its… Read more

      John Charlton Polkinghorne, KBE (Knight of the British Empire), FRS (Fellow of the Royal Society), was a professor of mathematical physics at the University of Cambridge until he resigned his professorial chair to study for the priesthood, becoming an ordained Anglican priest in 1982.  Thereupon, he served as the president of Queens’ College, Cambridge, from 1988 until 1996.   The following notes are drawn from his 1996 Terry Lectures, delivered at Yale University and published as John Polkinghorne, Belief in God in an Age of Science (New Haven and London: Yale… Read more

    Further notes from John W . Welch, et al., eds., Knowing Why: 137 Evidences That the Book of Mormon Is True (American Fork: Covenant Communications, 2017), 47-50:   “What Are the ‘Fiery Darts of the Adversary’?” (47-48)   Some critics of the Book of Mormon have argued that Nephi’s reference to “the fiery darts of the adversary” in 1 Nephi 15:24 is simply copied — anachronistically — from Paul’s language at Ephesians 6:16.   But flaming projectiles and fiery arrows were used by ancient… Read more

    Since, I’m told, I’m a young-Earth creationist who hates and fears science, I’m afraid that I don’t know exactly what to do with this interesting article:   “Meteorites brought water to Earth during the first two million years”   Perhaps I need to regard those as the first two million years of Earth’s six-thousand-year existence?   In any case, now that we’ve raised the issue of meteorites coming to Earth, this question follows pretty naturally:   “What Danger… Read more

    Continuing with a draft of my forthcoming book on Islam for a Latter-day Saint audience:   Some readers will already have noticed a number of similarities between the Qur’an and the standard works of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. And, indeed, there are many. The present section will attempt to point some of them out. In this regard, perhaps the most obvious feature of the Qur’an is the fact that it contains many of the… Read more

    This week’s new article in Interpreter: A Journal of Mormon Scripture is a review essay titled   “Celebrating the Work of John W. Welch”   It marks the 287th consecutive Friday on which Interpreter has published at least one new article.  The Interpreter Foundation has existed for 288.5 weeks.   ***   Don’t forget the Interpreter Foundation’s new radio program, which will broadcast its second show on Sunday evening, from 7 PM to 8 PM (Utah time) on… Read more

    This is how the text read in my old book Abraham Divided, from the mid-1980s.  This is a passage, I think, that needs considerable expansion and nuancing.  Comments are welcome, as are suggestions of issues that you would want to see covered.   Islam has a very realistic view of the issues involved here, a view that does not easily lend itself to the support of pacifism. Had God not defended some men by the might of others,… Read more

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