“Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing”

    One of the high points of this morning’s session of the annual conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s rendition of “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing.”  So that those who didn’t hear it may get an idea of how that went, here’s a link to [Read More…]

“White dwarf [star] with nearly pure oxygen atmosphere surprises astronomers”

    It turns out that we don’t know everything yet, and that there are still surprises out there:   http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/2016/apr/01/white-dwarf-with-nearly-pure-oxygen-atmosphere-surprises-astronomers   Apparently, no current model of stellar evolution predicted this.     [Read more…]

“Syria’s Palmyra: Ghost town bearing scars of IS destruction”

    Although, happily, the forces of the self-described “Islamic State” have now been driven from the area, the damage that has been done there — both human and material — is deep, irreparable, and unspeakably sad:   http://hosted2.ap.org/APDEFAULT/b2f0ca3a594644ee9e50a8ec4ce2d6de/Article_2016-04-01-ML–Syria-Clearing%20Palmyra/id-e22c854cdc1848319fef38d0fa6b5aae     [Read more…]

“Resources on the Spalding Theory of Book of Mormon Origins”

    For roughly a century, it was the preferred counter-explanation proposed by critics for the origin of the Book of Mormon.  And, although it’s fallen sharply out of favor in recent decades and is accepted by no mainstream scholar (whether Mormon or not), it still has its passionate devotees.  And, once in a while, it [Read More…]

“The tomb of Jesus”

    The latest in the biweekly series of columns in the Deseret News that I write with Dr. William Hamblin:   http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865651336/The-tomb-of-Jesus.html         [Read more…]

“The Pirate Queen”

    We’re just back from dinner and a musical, which we enjoyed with a friend.   The dinner was at one of our favorite Salt Lake Valley restaurants, the Market Street Grill in South Jordan.  Excellent seafood.  Wonderful clam chowder.  Even the sourdough bread is really, really good.   The musical was The Pirate [Read More…]

BOM Mosiah 19

    If your opinion of King Noah isn’t already low enough, today’s reading, Mosiah 19, should help you to lower it further.  Consider, for example, these passages:   “And the king commanded the people that they should flee before the Lamanites, and he himself did go before them” (19:9).   In other words, when danger [Read More…]

“Nice Try, But No Cigar: A Response to Three Patheos Posts on Nahom (1 Nephi 16:34)”

    Since it’s Friday, the folks at Interpreter: A Journal of Mormon Scripture thought to themselves “What the heck.  Why not put up an article today?”   So here’s an article:   Nice Try, But No Cigar: A Response to Three Patheos Posts on Nahom (1 Nephi 16:34)       [Read more…]

Acting on impressions

    “In the performance of our responsibilities, I have learned that when we heed a silent prompting and act upon it without delay, our Heavenly Father will guide our footsteps and bless our lives and the lives of others. I know of no experience more sweet or feeling more precious than to heed a [Read More…]

“How to effectively engage in social media during LDS general conference”

    For many years, I wondered how I, sitting in the very heart of very Mormon Utah County, which is located in the heart of Mormon Utah, and teaching at the Church’s university, could be seriously involved in missionary service.   I could, of course, hope to send out the occasional missionary.  I could [Read More…]