What ho, what ho, what ho! Another day for us scripture nibs to gather round and chew the fat, or palaver if you prefer, all under the presiding auspices of Dan Peterson as our genial presiding deity. (more…)
Oh, I say, dash it! Dan Peterson is hosting an open discussion of the Book of Mormon, one chapter a day. It’s open to anyone who wants to contribute, nibs and us jolly old regular chappies alike. (He explains the project here). To date, if that’s the expression I want, the contributions have been quite fruity. Good, if you know what I mean.
The first week’s discussions are listed below by yours truly. On the advice of Jeeves, I’ve included a taste of Dan Peterson’s thought for each chapter, by way of whetting the old appetite. Toodle-oo and bon appetit! (more…)
After the requisite soul-searching and angst and all that, Nephi cut off Laban’s head, snicker-snack. He probably did not know at the time that he was setting up a type of Christ. (more…)
I’ve never agreed with those who have a problem with God assigning Nephi to be Laban’s executioner. God has the power to give life, and to take life. Why should we have a problem with the method by which God chooses to take a life? (One can easily infer a couple of good purposes or reasons for having Nephi be the one to shed Laban’s blood, but that’s another topic.)
After the olive orchard parable in Jacob 5, the prophet Jacob comments in Jacob 6:4–
And how merciful is our God unto us, for he remembereth the house of Israel, both roots and branches and he stretches forth his hands unto them all the day long . . . .
This is so cool.
As much as I dislike putting more money in the pockets of the producers, Parker and Stone, this is excellent thinking on the part of the church’s PR department.
It seems to me to be perfect targeting of people who are already thinking about what the LDS church really believes and what’s really in the Book of Mormon.
Like Brigham Young said, you can only kick the church up stairs, never downstairs. Or, in other words, there ain’t no such thing as bad publicity.
To repeat what others have written elsewhere, the musical, with it’s vulgarity, profanity and blasphemy, is not something devout members of any religion would want to see. But many converts do come from a worldly background. If you want to convert the Philistines, you have to go where they presently are.
If my notes and markings are accurate, I’m on my 13th reading of the entire Book of Mormon.
I concur with what many proponents of scipture-reading say, that one gains new insights with each reading.
My reading schedule has coincided with the church’s Sunday School’s Gospel Doctrine class. I have read not only the reading assignments, but the entire work being studied in the assigned year. Though for the last few years, I have ignored the reading sequence given in the lessons, and read the work (OT, NT, BoM, D&C) simply from front to back.
Given that the OT is a big reading chore in itself, I usually take two years to read the Book of Mormon while also reading the entire OT and NT during those two years of the cycle. Then read the BoM again during the year the BoM is studied, and again during the year that the Doctrine and Covenants is studied. Hence, during the four year Sunday School cycle, I read the OT once, the NT once, the D&C once, and the Book of Mormon three times.
It wasn’t until about the seventh time through the Book of Mormon (and several times through the OT and NT) that I finally overcame the seeming disconnect in the Gospel between the Old Testament and the New Testament. (more…)
The nature of the relationship btween the Mulekites and the Lamanites became a little clearer to me recently while reading the Book of Mormon this year.
In Omni verses 12 and 13 we read that the 1st King Mosiah led some of the Nephites out of the land of Nephi, took them on a journey and discovered the land and people of Zarahemla. Mosiah and his people then joined up with the Zarahemla-ites, also known as Mulekites. Mulek, son of Zedekiah King of Judah, was the principal of that group of immigrants (Mosiah 25:2, Helaman 6:10).
At that point, the Nephites had already had a long tradition of wars with the Lamanites.
It finally occured to me that since the Nephites were “new” to the Mulekites, so also were the Lamanites.
In Omni 24 we read that by the time the first Mosiah’s son Benjamin is king, the combined Nephites/Mulekites have had a war with the Lamanites.
In this, I see the beginning of the resentment between the Mulekites and the Nephites, in that the Nephites in effect brought the Lamanites upon the Mulekites. In spite of the fact that the Mulekites (Zarahemla-ites) rejoiced over the Nephites bringing the Brass Plates (the Old Testament up through the time of Jeremiah), and a presumed restoration of the Hebrew language, along with a presumed restoration of Hebrew and Egyptian writing, the fact remains that had the Nephites not come to Zarahemla, the Lamanites would likely not have discovered Zarahemla and would have left them alone.
To me, this explains in large part why Mulekite dissenters and King-men were not reluctant to join or make league with the Lamanites later on in the Book of Mormon. The dissenting Mulekites likely saw the Lamanites as the Nephites’ enemy, not their’s.
Some people have a problem when they do a literal reading of “smote off his head” in the case of Nephi killing Laban (1 Nephi 4:18), and Coriantumr killing Shiz (Ether 15:30-31). Common questions are “How could Shiz raise up on his hands and struggle for breath if he had been decapitated?” and “Wouldn’t Laban’s clothes have been covered in blood and gore, and wouldn’t Laban’s servant Zoram have noticed the blood?” (Warning: the rest of this gets gory and technical.) (more…)
Or, “My Crazy Has a Name.” (A cross-post.)
Isaac Asimov wrote a short story called “Light Verse” about a defective robot that could create works of art, generating fame for its owner. A robot engineer happened to be visiting the owner, recognized that it had a defect, and, not knowing that the defect was tied into the creation of the art, “fixed” the robot on the spot, thinking he was doing the owner a favor. However, by fixing the defect he removed the robot’s ability to create art. (more…)
I read from Donald Kagan’s On the Origins of War and the Preservation of Peace last night. Nothing cheers you up quite like reading about hideous wars that could have been easily prevented with a mote of resolution and a troy ounce of planning. (more…)