May 7, 2021

    ***   First, though, don’t miss this newly published item on the website of the Interpreter Foundation:   ““One Peep at the Other Side”: What Did Hugh Nibley’s Near-Death Experience Teach Him about the Purpose of Life?”   ***   This portion of today’s post is continued from “Addendum 5: Founding the Middle Eastern Texts Initiative at BYU (Part 1)”:   PROFESSOR DR MORITZ-MARIA VON IGELFELD often reflected on how fortunate he was to be exactly who he… Read more

May 5, 2021

    ***   I’m pleased to report that, with no apparent connection to any celebration of Cinco de Mayo, billboard advertisements for the Interpreter Foundation’s theatrical film Witnesses have evidently gone up today at a few places along Interstate 15 in the region of Salt Lake City.  There may also be one down in St. George.  I’ll need to wait for a few days to see them myself; here on Maui, we have neither an interstate nor, so far… Read more

May 5, 2021

    ***   The most recent installment of my new twice-a-month column for Meridian Magazine has now appeared:   “Martin Harris: Skeptic or Gullible Dupe?”   For some odd reason, the Book of Mormon witnesses have been on my mind quite a bit lately.   ***   In case you missed them:   “President Russell M. Nelson and the COVID-19 vaccine: What the church leader has said and done: Revered as a prophet by Latter-day Saints, he prayed throughout… Read more

May 5, 2021

    I want to remind you that the Interpreter Foundation’s new feature film Witnesses will open in selected theaters within slightly less than a month, and that tickets are already on sale for it.  You can order tickets by going to the film’s official website.  Look in the upper left corner of the website for the button that is marked, rather enigmatically and mysteriously, Get Tickets.  If your favorite theater doesn’t yet appear on the list of theaters for… Read more

May 4, 2021

    ***   Happily, we were able to attend the funeral of our friend and Orem neighbor yesterday.  (See “Farewell, For Now, to a Friend,” but also one of the “other matters” here.) Doing so, however, has definitely put me into an elegiac mood.   Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day. Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away. Change and decay in all around I see. O Thou who changest not, abide with me.  … Read more

May 3, 2021

    ***   Another article has appeared, this one by David M. Calabro, in Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship:   “The Divine Handclasp in the Hebrew Bible and in Near Eastern Iconography” Abstract: David Calabro explores what he describes as the “divine handclasp” in the Hebrew Bible. The term refers to a handclasp between God and his human servant that had a place in ancient Israelite temple worship. Calabro indicates it was a ritual gesture that was… Read more

May 2, 2021

    ***   Here, I share some passages that I marked when reading Thomas Dubay, The Evidential Power of Beauty: Science and Theology Meet (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1999), a while back:   [F]or science, beauty is objective, “out there”.  Among the mechanistic suppositions of previous generations was the idea that beauty is an inner attitude of the beholder rather than a property of the objective world.  The awareness that the universe is stunningly beautiful wherever we turn our… Read more

May 1, 2021

    ***   This is very, very good news:   “President Nelson announces plans to preserve pioneer craftsmanship of Manti Utah Temple, construct a new temple in nearby Ephraim”   “Church announces new Latter-day Saint temple in Ephraim, Utah. Manti temple to retain its pioneer heritage”   ***   I hope that some of you might enjoy this:   “The Strength of Joseph’s Character”   ***   I wrote about our dear friend Henry M. Yeates the other day. … Read more

April 30, 2021

    ***   This new article appeared earlier today in Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship:   Loren Blake Spendlove, “And the One Pointed the Way: Issues of Interpretation and Translation Involving the Liahona” Abstract: In describing the operation of the spindles in the Liahona, Nephi’s statement that “the one pointed the way” in 1 Nephi 16:10 is frequently taken to mean that one of the two spindles indicated the direction to travel. However, Nephi’s apparent use of the… Read more

April 29, 2021

    ***   Somewhat more than eight years ago, a plainly overconfident pseudonymous critic on a small, extraordinarily nasty, and mostly atheist ex-Mormon message board took it upon himself to prophesy:   “By Jan. 1, 2014 Interpreter will be dead. . . .  Either totally dead or down to token ‘blog’ style postings.” (Bond James Bond, 25 January 2013)   But prophecy is a risky business.   ***   This press release has just been issued by our publicist for the Witnesses theatrical… Read more

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