Catalyst Theory of the Book of Abraham

Catalyst Theory of the Book of Abraham August 26, 2013

I think it is worth noting an important distinction in the “Catalyst Theory.”

Simply put, the Catalyst Theory posits that

1- the BOA as we have it in the PGP was not found anywhere on any of the JS papyri, surviving or lost.

2- JS received the papyri, became interested in Abraham, etc., and

3- thereupon received a unique revelation from God of the translation of an ancient authentic Abraham document = our Book of Abraham.

Note that David Bokovoy does not subscribe to the Catalyst Theory.  He agrees with the first two points, but not the third.  Bokovoy’s position, if I understand him correctly, is as follows:

1- The BOA as we have it in the PGP was not found anywhere on any of the JS papyri, surviving or lost.

2- JS received the papyri, became interested in Abraham, etc., and

3- thereupon God inspired him with a pseudepigraphic tale of ancient Abraham, which is in reality completely a 19th century fictitious creation, and has nothing to do with the ancient Abraham (if there even was such a person).  It may contain important spiritual truths, and can be accepted by Latter-day Saints as the word of God.  

Point three is a very important distinction, and the essence of the dispute.

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