Obedience and Speaking for God

Last week in my ward, the Sunday school lesson included 1 Samuel 15, where Samuel speaks for God and tells Saul, “go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.”So Saul kills the Amalekites, except the king, while sparing the best animals, ostensibly for sacrifice. Then, as is well known, Samuel tells him that “to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. … [Read more...]

Unanswered Questions about the Priesthood

As President Uchtdorf said in his in general conference talk last October, “Sometimes questions arise because we simply don’t have all the information.”[i] And as Managing Director of Public Affairs for the Church, Michael Otterson, stated last month, “I suppose we do not know all the reasons why Christ did not ordain women as apostles, either in the New Testament or the Book of Mormon, or when the Church was restored in modern times.”[ii]It’s important to recognize how much we don’t know, an … [Read more...]

Remember that one time God totally denied having a body in restoration scripture?

There I was looking at all the fascinating differences between the First Book of Moses called Genesis in the KJV and the Book of Moses in the Pearl of Great Price … such as the global change from third person to first person (e.g. Genesis: “God said” > Moses: “I, God, said”) … when to my surprise I saw this anti-anthropomorphism:Genesis 3:8 KJV And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of t … [Read more...]

Even More Old Testament Pseudepigrapha

I once wrote about the Jacob (pseud)epigraphon in the book of Alma, which I said I would follow up on but never did, and I won’t do it here. Because there are even more Old Testament pseudepigrapha to write about that are not old but new!The current issue of the Ensign features an article written in the first person as though by Adam. It looks to be the initial article in a series called “Old Testament Prophets,” coinciding with the year’s gospel doctrine topic. Apparently, soon there will be … [Read more...]

What Paul did not mean by apostle

Paul claims to be an apostle by virtue of his vision/s of Jesus.He does not claim to be an apostle by virtue of Jesus ordaining him to any priesthood.He does not claim to be an apostle by virtue of Peter, another of the twelve, or anyone else ordaining him to any priesthood either, though he does want to point out that years after the fact James and Peter and John accepted him (Galatians 2:6-10).When he refers to apostles (arguably including the woman Junia in Romans 16:7) and … [Read more...]

The Heresies of Father Brown and the Future of LDS Scriptural Studies

With the new direction at the Maxwell Institute, the launch of the Mormon Interpreter, the latest about the BYU New Testament Commentary project, and the search for a new dean of Religious Education, which culminated last week, there has been some talk about the future of LDS scriptural studies, including, but hardly focused on, the Bible.In talking about the future, we might consider the history of scriptural studies in other faith traditions, such as Catholicism. Broadly speaking, … [Read more...]

Evangelium secundum Matthaeum et tres porci minores

Matt 7:6 …neither cast ye your pearls before swine… (The three little pigs? No, just coincidence.)Matt 7:7-8 …knock and it shall be opened unto you… (Hmm.)Matt 7: 15 … but inwardly they are ravening wolves… (Well.)Matt 7:19 ... and cast into the fire … (Uh. Fire. Pot of boiling water.)Matt 7:21 Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter … (Little pig, little pig, let me in!?)Matt 7:23 … depart from me … (Not by the hair of my chinny chin chin. Yes. Je … [Read more...]

Event at Benchmark Books Tonight: Mormons and the Bible

If you are in the area of Benchmark Books, stop by to hear Philip L. Barlow and to pick up a copy of the updated edition of his book, Mormons and the Bible: The Place of the Latter-day Saints in American Religion, which has just been reissued in paperback with a new preface and updated bibliography.And if you are not in the area, get a copy online.First published by Oxford University Press in 1991 and featuring such chapters as “The Mormon Response to Higher Criticism,” the book should be … [Read more...]


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