Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Some Lessons in Assimilation, Archaeology, and Texts

While doing some reading on the events of the 8th and 7th centuries BC in Israel and Judah, for research on a writing project I am working on, I came across some interesting gems talking about the relationship of some biblical accounts and the archaeological record.

Monday, April 4, 2016

17 General Conference-Book of Mormon Memes

General Conference has once again come and gone. That, of course, means that we are only just beginning in terms of pondering and applying the abundance of counsel given to us as Latter-day Saints. As usual, there were a number of inspiring and motivating messages that were shared. And Church leaders frequently drew upon the Book of Mormon to teach important principles.

Given that memes have become such a large part of our social media culture, it is no surprise that memes have also become a common way to consume and share General Conference.  The Book of Mormon Central staff churned out 17 memes during the conference that highlight different instances where the Book of Mormon was used in General Conference.

Though these were posted in as timely a manner as possible on the Book of Mormon Central Facebook page, and I plastered my own Facebook wall with them (sorry to all my friends who got sick of me over this weekend), I thought I would collect them and post them here.


Hopefully these can be an aid to you in as you seek to ponder and share the many inspiring messages from this last General Conference.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Names and Meaning, Part 2: Zoram Revisited

Image by James Fullmer
Nearly three years ago, I wrote a blog post about the Book of Mormon Onomasticon project, and it became a pretty popular post, even being featured on Real Clear Religion. In that post, I used the name Zoram as a case study on how the meaning of names can shed light on the text. The etymology I used there was Ṣûrām or *Ṣûrʿām, “their rock” or “rock of the people” and suggested that the narrative in 1 Nephi 4 lends itself to a wordplay with Zoram.

At the time, I noted that Zoram is first introduced into the narrative simply as the “servant of Laban” (1 Nephi 4:20, 31, 33), and that it’s not until taking an oath wherein he is promised his freedom that he is called by his name (1 Nephi 4:35). At the time, I suggested this could be a deliberate literary device intended to suggest that with the oath he became Zoram, a “rock,” steadfast and true to his oath.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Want to KnoWhy? Book of Mormon Central, Month 2

On Monday Book of Mormon Central finished its second month of KnoWhy publications—and instantly started on month 3 the very next day. In February, 21 KnoWhys were published, covering a number of topics worthy of interest to Latter-day students of the Book of Mormon. As previously mentioned, each KnoWhy is about some particular detail in the Book of Mormon and at least one reason why that detail is, or should be, interesting, relevant, or applicable. It’s about knowing why Lehi blessed his sons, or Jacob spoke at the temple, or Nephi selected the Isaiah passages he did. Etc., etc. You can read about the reasoning behind this name at Why KnoWhy, if you would like. Here are all 21 KnoWhys published in February.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Mormon Lent, Day 8

This is yesterdays, which I just finished. Stephen and Jasmin were on time with theirs. The passage is Romans 5:14–15:

Stephen (from Greek):
But death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over those who did not sin after the manner of Adam’s disobedience (who is a type of things to come). But not like a trespass; rather in the manner of grace. For if by one trespass many die, even more so is the grace of God and the gift in the grace of one man, Jesus Christ, afforded to many.
Jasmin (also from Greek):
But death ruled from Adam until Moses even over them that had not sinned after the likeness of Adam’s transgression, who is a type of the one who was to come. But not as the trespass, so also is the grace. For if by the trespass of the one many died, much more did the grace of God, and the gift in grace of the one man Jesus Christ abound unto the many.
Neal (from Latin):

But death ruled from Adam through Moses, even among them who have not sinned in similitude of Adam’s transgression, who was the form of him to come. But not like the misdeed, even so is the gift. If truly by the misdeed of one, many are dead, much more does the grace of God and the gift in grace of one man, Jesus Christ, greatly abound.