My dissertation involves a lot of President Joseph Fielding Smith, particularly the way he interpreted scripture, his influential assumptions, and conclusions. Continue reading “Joseph Fielding Smith on Scriptural interpretation and Scientific Conflict”
Logos is my preferred source of electronic books. I’ve used it for 20 years. Continue reading “Quick Notes on a New Year’s Sale at Logos”
At the opening of BYU’s 2019 Reconciling Evolution workshop—which focuses on biology pedagogy with religious students— Associate Academic Vice-President John Rosenberg represented the University in welcoming the dozens of participants to BYU. He spoke on the pursuit of knowledge, using medieval depictions of Mary, Gabriel, and the Annunciation. I have adapted from my notes for this post, by permission.
I’ve plugged Biblical Archaeology Review (BAR) before, a great magazine (with pictures!) aimed at laypeople interested in the history, text, interpretation, and archaeology of the Bible. (Notably, there are some LDS in there from time to time!) It’s scholarly but accessible, includes multiple perspectives, and the letters to the editor are illustrative and amusing. Worth subscribing to. Continue reading “Canaanite Santa Claus, Handel’s Messiah, and the Real St. Nicholas”
First, an update on my blog plans for next year.
In June 1965, the LDS Sunday School presidency informally began a new series on science and religion, written by LDS scientists. Continue reading “Tales from the Archives 4: Science, Interpretation, and Bad Feeling in 1965”
I repost this every year.
When the mission president announced to our small group of greenies that I was going to Strasbourg, France’s northeastern border, I shrugged the resigned shrug of a missionary who knew nothing about anywhere but was willing to go wherever. One of the sisters expressed jealousy; Strasbourg, she said, was one of the best cities in the mission.
She was right, and it would not be a good thing. Continue reading “A Missionary Reminiscence on Christmas in Western Europe”
I recently discovered an article about “the first real confrontation of Mormonism with science” during the Utah smallpox outbreak at the turn of the 19/20th century.
A few general introductory notes about the Book of Ether.
First, unlike the other two Book of Mormon migratory peoples, the Jaredites (as we call them) are not under the Law of Moses. Abraham>Isaac>Jacob (Israel)>>>>Moses. They’re not Jewish nor even Israelite (also a late term) nor Canaanite, but Mesopotamian, probably. So they are operating under a different set of religious ideas, different language— Sumerian, Akkadian, something else? Hebrew isn’t an option— and different cultural background than the rest of the Book of Mormon. And indeed, Ether has a different feel to it than the rest. It’s largely political history, stories of wars between scheming royal families, imprisonment, regicide, etc. All very Game of Thrones-y. Continue reading “Come Follow Me: Ether”
From 1934-5, the age of the earth, evolution, and scripture was hotly debated in the Deseret News. (See here for a little history and context.) Elders John Widtsoe and Joseph Fielding Smith wrote nothing themselves, but encouraged, solicited, and pushed articles reflecting their own views. On Widtsoe’s side was James E. Talmage’s son Sterling, who had received a PhD in geology. (JET had died the year before.) On Smith’s side, were several people, including Sidney Sperry, Major Howard S. Bennion, and Dudley J. Whitney, a Pentecostal farmer. Continue reading “Tales from the Archives 3: The 1934-5 Newspaper Proxy Wars and Writing Hot”