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The 1922 B.H. Robert's Meeting With General Authoriteis Re: Book of Mormon Problems and the Secret Meetings That Followed it


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While I'll assume no one in this board is unfamiliar with this subject, I'll still offer a short synopsis just in case. Back Story:  In 1985 the family of B.H. Roberts allowed a collection of his personal papers, still in the private hands of family members, to be published into book form.  The collection was published as "Studies of The Book of Mormon"

In his papers were discovered notes of a special meeting that was held in early 1922 involving all member's of the First Presidency, The Quorum of the Twelve as well as the 7 Presidents of the Seventy, of which Robert's was a member.  Robert's had been given the assignment by Heber J. Grant to answer questions that had been sent in a letter to the church from a member seeking answers. 

The questions were quite straight forward:

  • when the Jews landed in the New World (600 B.C.) is not enough time to explain the diversity of native Indian languages.
  • Horses were introduced to the Americas by the Spaniards, thus their appearance in the Book of Mormon is an anachronisms.
  • The use of steel in the Book of Mormon is an anachronism.
  • The use of scimitars (an arabian sword) in an anachronism.
  • The use of silk was unknown to the Americas.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Studies_of_the_Book_of_Mormon

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"At the meeting Roberts presented the matter, told them frankly that he was stumped and ask for their aide in the explanation. In answer, they merely one by one stood up and bore their testimony to the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon... Bro. Roberts could not criticize them for not being able to answer it or to assist him, but said that in a Church which claimed continuous revelation, a crisis had arisen where revelation was necessary. After the meeting he wrote Pres. Grant expressing his disappointment at the failure... These are some of the things which has made Bro. Roberts shift his base on the Book of Mormon. Instead of regarding it as the strongest evidence we have of Church Divinity, he regards it as the one which needs the most bolstering."  - Studies of the Book of Mormon page 22-23

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I was very greatly disappointed over the net results of the discussion. There was so much said that was utterly irrelevant, and so little said, if anything at all, that was helpful in the matters at issue that I came away from the conference quite disappointed. - B.H. Roberts in letter to President Grant following meeting.

Roberts concerns went unanswered by church authorities which caused him to try and resolve the difficulties himself.  The book represents his attempt to resolve those questions, he was unsuccessful in doing so. 

Now a new master thesis has been written exploring secret meetings that took place following Robert's failed attempt to find satisfaction from his fellow church authorities.  Robert's formed this band of LDS intelligentsia in a further attempt to resolve his concerns and find answers to Book of Mormon problems.  While I've only just started to read it, this thesis is a fascinating behind the scenes look into the pre-correlation church.

https://scholarworks.unr.edu/handle/11714/6712

Despite his failures to resolve his concerns, we owe much to Roberts attempt, for it was from many of these questions that much of today's apologetic theories of a limited footprint, duel Cumorah's and acknowledgement of a pre-populated Asian immigrant America, to name just a few, have emerged.  Since the emergence of the internet, modern day apologetics has completely re-framed how the Book of Mormon is viewed from how it was interpreted in 1922. The problem is that much of the church still views the book in much the same way as it was seen in 1922.

Mormon historians have debated whether the manuscript/book reflects Roberts's doubts or was a case of his playing a devils advocate. One interesting fact remains, per his instructions, his headstone has a Christian Cross on it, which was even unusual for that time and even more so for a former General Authority of the Church.

 

Edited by Fair Dinkum
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21 minutes ago, Fair Dinkum said:

Here is his full quote and another just prior to his passing:

 

i'd be more interested in actually reading the full Lloyd's journal account rather than someone's else's assessment of it, there are segments taken out of it

you are aware that he died on Sept. 27, 1933, not in August? He told a "long time friend" of his, Jack Christiansen just days before he died in Sept, “You accept Joseph Smith and all of the scriptures.”

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1983/12/b-h-roberts-after-fifty-years-still-witnessing-for-the-book-of-mormon?lang=eng

 

This is old news, obviously for some but read this article from John W. Welch that talks about the Wesley Lloyd entry

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1986/03/b-h-roberts-seeker-after-truth?lang=eng

Edited by Duncan
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18 minutes ago, Duncan said:

i'd be more interested in actually reading the full Lloyd's journal account rather than someone's else's assessment of it, there are segments taken out of it

you are aware that he died on Sept. 27, 1933, not in August? He told a "long time friend" of his, Jack Christiansen just days before he died in Sept, “You accept Joseph Smith and all of the scriptures.”

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1983/12/b-h-roberts-after-fifty-years-still-witnessing-for-the-book-of-mormon?lang=eng

As one who studied this issue deeply years ago, I think (and my points are contradictory):

1.  The Lloyd journal account isn't necessarily reliable as a piece of evidence.

2.  Roberts developed a faith crisis with the Book of Mormon over issues which, today, seem trivial.  But they weren't trivial then.  He thought some sort of revelation from the President of the Church was necessary to resolve the crisis when, in fact, the President of the Church does not deliver revelations in that manner.  Joseph Smith may have provided revelations like that, but no President since then has done so.

3.  Roberts' contradictory statements saying that he accepted all the scriptures does not erase his history of difficulties with the Book of Mormon.  One does not erase or explain the other by any means.  He was a General Authority and a Church Historian. 

4.  I think much of Roberts' crisis had to do with his personality of self-aggrandizement, his defensiveness over his minority status as a general authority (a Seventy rather than an Apostle; although Joseph Smith elevated the Seventy, Brigham Young did not); his conflicts with the Brethren over his political aspirations.  He was always on the outs with the Brethren, largely because of his need for self-promotion. His faith crisis was some sort of psychological need to confront the Brethren, who didn't rise to the occasion as he thought necessary. 

5.  Again, his issues with the Book of Mormon seem rather trivial today and have been well-documented and discussed.  Although there's some of Jack Welch's article with which I disagree, he summarizes the issues at https://archive.bookofmormoncentral.org/content/finding-answers-bh-robertss-questions-and-unparallel.   In particular, I do not think one can argue that the Book of Mormon is not a rip-off of View of the Hebrews by pointing to its differences, a common apologetic approach but false logically.  But a lot of Welch's paper is helpful.

Edited by Bob Crockett
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18 minutes ago, Kevin Christensen said:

Up until last year, the Maxwell Institute had most of the Preliminary Reports online, including John Welch's 1985 response to the publication of the Roberts Study.  Fortunately, Book of Mormon Central has taken up the slack.  (*edit: and Bob Crockett beat me to the punch in in posting it.)

https://archive.bookofmormoncentral.org/content/finding-answers-bh-robertss-questions-and-unparallel

When I read the Study back in 1985, I had the feeling that I had been dropped down a well, and scholar wide, and 63 years deep.  I'd heard about the Study from people who claimed it was totally devastating to the Book of Mormon, but I thought it was naive.  And that was just based on what I had read up to 1985.  Nibley, Sorensen, and a few years of FARMS articles.  Now, it's almost 100 years deep and no wider.  While Roberts was disappointed that all the other GAs did was bear their testimonies at the Study, time has shown that they were right.  A determination to face problems in order to publically demonstrate one's scholarly integrity has the unfortunate effect of stiffling imagination (there might be different ways of looking at the issue) and perspective (not all the information we want in 1922 is available in 1922).  Think about how Roberts might have composed his study if he had been able to Google "Olmec iron" or watch the National Geographic Special on the Mesoamerican LiDar survey now streaming on Disney +, or read Mormon's Codex, and Second Witness, and talk with Brian Stubbs about Uto-Aztecan, or even read Nibley's books.

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

I most definitely thought Roberts' discussion was naive.    

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32 minutes ago, smac97 said:

I rarely share hearsay anecdotes, but I'll relax my rule for this one.

I enjoyed reading your grandfather's recollections Thanks for relaxing your rules.

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Rather than addressing each bullet point, I just wish to mention one thing. “Steel”, also appears in the Bible. 
 

To address only one point, 

I am a true believer in every way, if my children were to read my writings, opinions, about the Bible that I found. They would come to believe I was a closest atheist, and it might cause them issues with their own Faith. But I am not an atheist, I am just observant. I began taking correspondence courses, about the Bible at age 11. I also grew up in the home of a Minister, my own Father. 
 

There are many issues, or seemingly controversial, or contradictory areas of all Scripture. Make no mistake about it, anything touched by man, is almost always flawed in some, if not many ways. My guess is the only exception, is the 10 Commandments, and then only because it was written by the very “finger of God”. 
 

In fact many years ago, when this discussion board hard a large range of opinions and posters, we have a very devout Evangelical (I won’t mention his name). In fact, he was and “true blue Evangelical”, who wanted to become a Minister. So, during his years long study of the Bible, in Seminary College, he because a non-believer, due to, too many contradictions in the Bible.

Edited by Bill “Papa” Lee
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2 hours ago, smac97 said:
Quote

Since the emergence of the internet, modern day apologetics has completely re-framed how the Book of Mormon is viewed from how it was interpreted in 1922. The problem is that much of the church still views the book in much the same way as it was seen in 1922.

Hmm.  I think most Latter-day Saints don't read the Book of Mormon and come away with concerns about pre-columbian horses, "silk," etc.  Some do, of course.  And when that happens, there is a wealth of information available to them.  Immediately.  For free.

Dang - did I wake up in the year 2002?  This criticism, and its valid and worthy mic drop response, are about word-for-word straight out of the late great apologetics battles of like two decades ago.    And the wealth of information has only grown vaster, quicker, and free-er.

Is this thread going to bring up "the embarrassing issue of nephite coinage"?  Maybe the classics never go out of style.

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54 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

Am I the only person who doesn't care about historical issues with the Book of Mormon?  :unknw:

"And now, if there are faults they are the mistakes of men; wherefore, condemn not the things of God, that ye may be found spotless at the judgment-seat of Christ."

The Book of Mormon is a revelation written by the hands of men.  If it gets some historical facts in error that is utterly meaningless.  They have no bearing on salvation and whether it happened in South, Central or North America makes no difference.
Its doctrine is flawless.

How could the doctrine be considered flawless if we assume there are mistakes of men?  

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5 hours ago, stemelbow said:
Quote

Am I the only person who doesn't care about historical issues with the Book of Mormon?  :unknw:

"And now, if there are faults they are the mistakes of men; wherefore, condemn not the things of God, that ye may be found spotless at the judgment-seat of Christ."

The Book of Mormon is a revelation written by the hands of men.  If it gets some historical facts in error that is utterly meaningless.  They have no bearing on salvation and whether it happened in South, Central or North America makes no difference.

Its doctrine is flawless.

How could the doctrine be considered flawless if we assume there are mistakes of men?  

Perhaps the "mistakes of men" are not in the doctrine?

In the law, when an appellate court publishes an opinion, it is comprised of two elements: ratio decidendi and obiter dicta.

"Ratio decidendi" is "a Latin phrase meaning 'the reason' or 'the rationale for the decision'. The ratio decidendi is 'the point in a case that determines the judgement' or 'the principle that the case establishes'."

"Obiter dicta" is "a Latin phrase meaning 'by the way', that is, a remark in a judgment that is 'said in passing.'"  "For the purposes of judicial precedent, ratio decidendi is binding, whereas obiter dicta are persuasive only."

If we analogize this to scriptures (as being comparable to a published opinion), the "doctrine" in the text would be equivalent to Ratio Decidendi, with the residual text being Obiter Dicta (which can contain "mistakes of men").  The textual narrative is the framework, the tree from which the doctrinal fruit grows .

For me, this helps me reconcile the beauty of the doctrines with the presence of "errors."  For example, it is one thing to say that the Nephite record was not utterly "historically accurate" in its depiction of the Lamanites.  That they could have been, or actually were, "racist" or "ethnocentric" in their views of the Lamanites.  See, e.g., here:

Quote

It is understandable how some, without this nuanced understanding, could read the Book of Mormon as a text that portrays the Nephites as having what we today would deem “racist,” or more properly ethnocentric, attitudes towards non-Nephites. “Could the Nephites have been racist in their views of the Lamanites?” asked John A. Tvedtnes. “Perhaps, in the same sense that the biblical patriarchs were racist when it came to their pagan neighbors—the Hittites, the Canaanites, and the Amorites—and did not want their offspring to marry these unbelievers.”

Brant A. Gardner remarked that “the Book of Mormon is, in fact, racist,” but quickly added that it is “not at all ['racist'] in the usual sense of the term.” Rather than being a form of modern racism that bases antipathy on a difference of skin color, Gardner reads Nephite “racism” as an ethnocentrism “along the insider/outsider boundary, not the white/dark boundary.” Gardner concluded that “the ‘skin of blackness’ was certainly intended to be a pejorative term, but it was not a physical description.”

It should not be overlooked that the Book of Mormon itself condemns this Nephite ethnocentrism. Jacob slammed Nephite ethnic pride when he declared, “Behold, the Lamanites your brethren, whom ye hate because of their filthiness and the cursing which hath come upon their skins, are more righteous than you. . . . Wherefore, a commandment I give unto you, which is the word of God, that ye revile no more against them because of the darkness of their skins” (Jacob 3:5, 9). Clear at the end of Nephite history, tribalism and ethnocentrism was eschewed, and portrayed as leading to hatred, wickeness, pride, vanity, and rejection of the Gospel of Jesus Christ (4 Nephi 1:38–43). Whatever ethnocentric attitudes the Nephites may have exhibited were thus condemned by the Book of Mormon prophets.

The Book of Mormon had an editor.  Perhaps Mormon was sufficiently inspired to craft a narrative that contains pure "doctrine" while also addressing the errors and flaws of those who sought to discern and obey those doctrines.

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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1 hour ago, stemelbow said:

I think it's fair to say this thread was inspired by this:

https://scholarworks.unr.edu//handle/11714/6712

Or maybe not the writing in particular, but an interview with Shannon Montez, the author.

It appears those responding hadn't read it, so I figured I'd link it.

It's an interesting focus on the meetings of 1922.  

I believe Roberts stumbled in his faith.  His immense ego (a good quality sometime, bad at other times) and personal pride made it difficult to be humble about it.  I think we should celebrate this story as showing us that faith isn't something to be taken for granted.  He's like many others. 

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7 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:

While I'll assume no one in this board is unfamiliar with this subject, I'll still offer a short synopsis just in case.

 

"a crisis had arisen where revelation was necessary"? Somebody is overreacting a bit... :)

It kind of sounds like those today who demand the Brethren to seek / get a revelation on their particular issue and even sometimes their preferred decision -- the crisis is in them (not downplaying anyone's reaction to pressures they find difficult to manage), not the Restored Gospel.

 

Edited by CV75
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5 hours ago, JLHPROF said:

Am I the only person who doesn't care about historical issues with the Book of Mormon?  :unknw:

"And now, if there are faults they are the mistakes of men; wherefore, condemn not the things of God, that ye may be found spotless at the judgment-seat of Christ."

The Book of Mormon is a revelation written by the hands of men.  If it gets some historical facts in error that is utterly meaningless.  They have no bearing on salvation and whether it happened in South, Central or North America makes no difference.
Its doctrine is flawless.

Amen to that. Although I tend to follow the research at the Maxwell Institute and other sources, it is out of sheer curiosity. My testimony of the Restored Gospel has absolutely nothing to do with such peripheral, non-doctrinal issues.

The fundamental flaw in human communication is language. It is an approximation of thought and emotion and rather a futile attempt to express, within the boundaries of individual limitations, what our cognition manages to grasp. 

We can only use the words we know to describe what we think we see/understand. 

1920 Flying saucer a.k.a 1980 space craft...

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12 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:

While I'll assume no one in this board is unfamiliar with this subject, I'll still offer a short synopsis just in case. Back Story:  In 1985 the family of B.H. Roberts allowed a collection of his personal papers, still in the private hands of family members, to be published into book form.  The collection was published as "Studies of The Book of Mormon"

In his papers were discovered notes of a special meeting that was held in early 1922 involving all member's of the First Presidency, The Quorum of the Twelve as well as the 7 Presidents of the Seventy, of which Robert's was a member.  Robert's had been given the assignment by Heber J. Grant to answer questions that had been sent in a letter to the church from a member seeking answers. 

I assume your thread has more to do with BH Roberts, but I will address some of the concerns he raised.

12 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:

The questions were quite straight forward:

  • when the Jews landed in the New World (600 B.C.) is not enough time to explain the diversity of native Indian languages.

Agreed. Natives preexisted the landing.

12 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:
  • Horses were introduced to the Americas by the Spaniards, thus their appearance in the Book of Mormon is an anachronisms.

Wrong. Horses were actually indigenous to the Americas, and meandered over to Asia. To assume they went totally extinct in the Americas is not wise. DNA of horse dung has been found in Alaska dating back only about 6000 years - well after their presumed extinction. Not all wild horses in the Americas have Spanish lineage. Some have more Siberian lineage....

12 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:
  • The use of steel in the Book of Mormon is an anachronism.

But iron is not. We know that Natives did use meteoric iron. Assuming they used steel like back in the Middle East, the forging process was not very good, and the steel was of fairly low quality. It would rust fairly readily. That is why few swords from the Middle East survive even though it is much drier there than in say Eastern N. America, where one could hardly expect such swords to survive 2000 years.

12 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:
  • The use of scimitars (an arabian sword) in an anachronism.

Scimitars is not an Arabian word. It is an English word, which seems to have been derived from the Italian word  scimitarra. The Persians and Iranians used a curved sword they called the Shamshir. The Muslims were actually somewhat slow to adopt the shamshir, instead favoring a straight double edged design used by Mohammed. Muslims were not the first to use a curved sword, but they predated the Muslims, and came from further east in Asia. Their exact origin is unknown.

12 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:
  • The use of silk was unknown to the Americas.

It is true that the Americas did not have the silk worm. However, it is known that Natives used the florescence of the milk weed in the same fashion with similar results - a very silky fabric. Anyone coming across such  fabric would probably call it silk.

 

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B.H. Roberts produced three critical studies of the Book of Mormon:

  • "Book of Mormon Difficulties: A Study",  141 typed pages
  • "A Book of Mormon Study", 427 typed pages
  • "A Parallel", 18 typed pages

Roberts presented the first paper to the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve in January 1922. He shared the "Parallel" with Elder Richard R. Lyman in 1927 and it circulated in the Mormon underground from the 1940s onward. But his major study was never presented to the Church leadership (and wasn't published until 1985, over the Church's objections). That one is by far the most damaging, in my view. I'm guessing most of those who've been making "nothing to see here" posts haven't read it. It's brutal.

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14 hours ago, Bob Crockett said:

I believe Roberts stumbled in his faith.  His immense ego (a good quality sometime, bad at other times) and personal pride made it difficult to be humble about it.  I think we should celebrate this story as showing us that faith isn't something to be taken for granted.  He's like many others. 

Thanks, Bob.  I'm not sure I understand where you're coming from with the immense ego stuff.  It certainly seems evident his views changed as he researched, and I think it's true he was quite passionate about the concerns raised, particularly as they relate to the BoM.  As per his faith, I"m not sure he'd categorize it that way.  It appears to me he held the Book of Mormon to carry inspiration even though it was not historical as claimed.  

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5 hours ago, Nevo said:

B.H. Roberts produced three critical studies of the Book of Mormon:

  • "Book of Mormon Difficulties: A Study",  141 typed pages
  • "A Book of Mormon Study", 427 typed pages
  • "A Parallel", 18 typed pages

Roberts presented the first paper to the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve in January 1922. He shared the "Parallel" with Elder Richard R. Lyman in 1927 and it circulated in the Mormon underground from the 1940s onward. But his major study was never presented to the Church leadership (and wasn't published until 1985, over the Church's objections). That one is by far the most damaging, in my view. I'm guessing most of those who've been making "nothing to see here" posts haven't read it. It's brutal.

I agree.  I think its pretty normal to feel there's nothing to see when heavy weights like Truman Madsen made a case.  

To the point, though, the five questions that posters here see no issue with, as posted in the OP,  amounted to introductory issues, it appears, for Roberts.  When he realized he didn't have sufficient answers to the 5, and others could not seemingly even take them seriously, he looked deeper and realized there were far more issues.  Yes, that the Church attempted to keep the 427 page "A Book of Mormon Study" hidden (and successfully did so through Madsen's conciliatory work on the topic), I think, demonstrates your point---"It's brutal".  

What I think we learned, though, is Roberts was completely wrong about this.  The issues simply don't need to be addressed in order for the Church to maintain.  That is to say, the early 1922 meeting with the 1st Presidency and Twelve that seemingly disappointed Roberts so much, was perhaps the best the Church could do to maintain its course.  I honestly doubt it's much different today--98 years later.  If an insider GA spent immense effort researching the issue and attempted to gather the 1st Presidency and 12 to address the findings, they'd likely respond with testimony bearing, dismissing the problems as insignificant.  That'd be my guess.  And the Church would maintain because, in truth, most active members do not see issue particularly if the leadership does not.  

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I have read the "Studies of the Book of Mormon" back in the 90's, I can't recall much of it though and I have been a fan, so to speak, of Elder Roberts since. I don't really buy into the idea he doubted the Book of Mormon, based on my readings from him. I had recently come across a PH.D. thesis out of Alaska that argues it is a European lie that horses weren't in the Americas when the Spaniards came here, basically saying that the natives Americans were so uncivilized that we had to save them, they didn't even have horses.

https://scholarworks.alaska.edu/handle/11122/7592

"They always had the horse"

Edited by Duncan
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9 minutes ago, Duncan said:

I have read the "Studies of the Book of Mormon" back in the 90's, I can't recall much of it though and I have been a fan, so to speak, of Elder Roberts since. I don't buy into the idea he doubted the Book of Mormon, based on my readings from him. I had recently come across a PH.D. thesis out of Alaska that argues it is a European lie that horses weren't in the Americas when the Spaniards came here, basically saying that the natives Americans were so uncivilized that we had to save them, they didn't even have horses.

https://scholarworks.alaska.edu/handle/11122/7592

"They always had the horse"

Thanks, Duncan, for your views.  I think it gets fairly murky to start accusing Roberts of losing his testimony or faith or whatever.  After he pushed for the Church to focus on addressing difficulties, seemingly out of frustration with him, the Church sent him on a mission...and he accepted..gone for 5 years.  .  And from what it appears, he worked his pants off for the Church.  If during that time, he had lost faith in the BoM, or the Church or movement, it certainly doesn't show.  I think it's pretty fair to conclude he gave his all to the Church, at least as much can be expected from a human, until he died.  That says something about how he viewed truth claims that the BoM being scripture.  No matter how far we take his criticisms and concerns, it's obvious he never gave it all up. But there does appear to be nuance, as people 5 years ago liked to say, and a heavy dose of what appears to be "hey the Church does good, we've got something for others to benefit from, there is inspiration in the scriptures..."  and the like.  Part of that, I suppose, rests squarely on the believability and interpretation of Lloyd's journal entries.

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        14. Why do our ancestors who die without having a knowledge of the gospel need us to perform ordinances for them in the temple?
      a) Without these ordinances, our ancestors cannot progress toward eternal life. (1 mark)
      b) Without these ordinances, our ancestors cannot be saved in any kingdom of glory.
      c} Without these ordinances, our ancestors will not be resurrected.
        15. Marriage between one man and one woman is the Lord's standing law. Wen is the only time plural marriage is justified?
      a) Wen there are more women than men in the Church (1 mark)
      b) Whenever local laws and traditions allow members to practice it without breaking the law
      c) When the Lord authorizes it through the priesthood keys given to the President of the Church
        16. When the President of the Church dies, which quorum becomes the presiding quorum of the Church? (1 mark)
      a) The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
      b) The Quorum of the First Presidency
      c) The Presiding Bishopric
        17. Which of the following shows the correct chronological order (first to last) of places the Saints were told to gather to? (1 mark}
      a) A stake in their homeland; Nauvoo, Illinois; Winter Quarters, Nebraska; Salt Lake City, Utah
      b) Nauvoo, Illinois; Winter Quarters, Nebraska; Salt Lake City, Utah; a stake in their homeland
      c) Winter Quarters, Nebraska; Nauvoo, Illinois; Salt Lake City, Utah; a stake in their homeland
        18. After the Savior visited the spirit world, what did righteous spirits there begin to do?
      a} They were all resurrected and began entering the highest kingdom of glory.
      b) They began performing ordinances for those who had not received them.
      c) They began teaching the gospel to those in spirit prison.
      (1 mark)
        19. According to Official Declaration 2, the Lord revealed that all worthy male Church members may ___ _ (1 mark)
      a) receive the ordinance of baptism
      b) serve a mission at age 18
      c) receive the priesthood and enjoy temple blessings
        20. What principle is emphasized in Doctrine and Covenants 121:36, 41-2? (1 mark)
      a) Priesthood holders can draw upon the powers of heaven only if they live righteously.
      b) lf we actively seek to learn through study and faith, our faith in Jesus Christ will increase.
      c) If we obey the Lord, He will always keep His promises to bless us.
        21. Which of the following accurately describes Heavenly Father? (1 mark)
      a) He is without feelings or emotions.
      b) He is a personage of Spirit and can dwell in us.
      c) He has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man's.
        22. Which of the following is a requirement for receiving exaltation in the celestial kingdom? (1 mark)
      a) Bearing testimony of the Savior is all that is needed.
      b) Receiving a patriarchal blessing
      c) Receiving and being valiant in the testimony of Jesus Christ
        23. Of the following groups, who will inherit the celestial kingdom? (1 mark)
      a) All children who die before they reach the age of accountability
      b) All members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
      c) All individuals who have been baptized
        24. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "God doesn't care how marriage is defined"? (1 mark)
      a) Ever individual born into morality is a child of God, and God loves each of us.
      b) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      c) God changes truth to meet the circumstances and needs of His children.
        25. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "It isn't as important for couples to have children today as it used to
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is the ideal setting for children to be born, reared, and nurtured.
      b) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
      c) God's commandment fr husbands and wives to have children remains in force today.
        26. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "As long as two individuals love each other, physical intimacy is
      acceptable"? (1 mark)
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is the ideal setting for children to be born, reared, and nurtured.
      b) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      c) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
        27. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "As governments continue to redefine marriage, God's definition of
      marriage will change to reflect the values of modern society"? (1 mark)
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      b) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
      c) Changes in the civil law do not change the moral law that God has established.
        28. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "The only purpose of marriage is for adults to find fulfillment and
      happiness"? (1 mark)
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is the ideal setting for children to be born, reared, and nurtured.
      b) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      c) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
      Section name: Explain Doctrine _
      Instructions: Write your answer on a piece of paper. Compare your response with the correct answer received from your teacher. After self-grading the explain-doctrine question, bubble in your answer sheet.
      Self-grade your answer for each question:
      a. Yes, I explained this in my response.
      b. No, I left this out of my response.
        29. What is an example of a truth that was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith? Explain why the truth you chose can help you receive eternal life. (1 mark)
        30. What is an example of an ordinance that was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith? Explain why the ordinance you chose can help you receive eternal life. (1 mark)
        31. What is an example of priesthood authority that was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith? Explain why this authority of the priesthood can help you receive eternal life. (1 mark)
        32. Share your personal thoughts on the importance of the Prophet Joseph Smith. (1 mark)
    • By blueglass
      Really impressed with Kate Holbrook's interview with Terryl Givens.  She's thoughtful, candid, and inspiring as she speaks about her persistence to get a PhD and work full time for the church as a manger of church history.  She's working on a project with Lisa Tate on the history of the young women's organization.  
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2G7k1ggz7k&feature=em-uploademail
      One thing I caught that I hadn't heard before was when Terryl asks her about whether she felt a sense of loss and a sense of jubilation when studying the history of the RS.  Joseph envisioned a more collaborative relationship with the male priesthood, more autonomy, abundance of spiritual gifts, authority to administer ordinances including healing by the laying of hands.  Kate responds that she understands the hyperfocus on this time period, but she feels there is a lost opportunity in recognizing the accomplishments of the women of the 20th century - she then backtracks a bit and says:
      "I don't want to say that their isn't a difference, between - a time when a woman was able to say I have this terrific idea she's say the General RS president and she goes and talks to the president of the church about it.  That is certainly different than now, when she goes and talks to someone in the presiding bishopric, and it has to go through several levels to even get to the president.  There is a loss, and there is a difference."
      I had no idea that the General RS president did not have direct access to the quorum of the 12, and first presidency?  Why in 3 heavens does the general RS president still have such an auxiliary level of access to the presiding apostolic quorum, access to financial influence through Pres Bishopric perhaps, but no real budget to work with?  No seat on the correlation committee?  
      Kate has a great story about how Ardeth Greene Kapp (General YW president 84-92') while receiving a downpour of revelation would use innovative, clever ways and technology to push the ideas upward through the hierarchy.  
    • By FearlessFixxer
      http://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2017/11/26/commentary-the-gaslighting-within-mormonism-must-stop/
    • By Bernard Gui
      On a thread that was closed for not supplying a topic for discussion.....
      I listened to the podcast. It takes apart Elder Packer's CES address where he defined what is a faithful/faith-promoting history of the Church.
      He calls his blog "Radio Free Mormon broadcasting behind enemy lines." Who is his enemy? It appears his enemy is the Church and its leaders.
      An hour-long monologue making a case that Boyd Packer was immoral, unethical, and a liar who worshipped a false God based on his CES talk about church history and Leonard Arrington. Also accuses the General Authorities of publishing books for the purpose of making a profit. He doesn't like Elder Packer who is portrayed as an evil man. Also dredges up the Gordon Hinckley's "I don't know" interview to question his integrity. Church leaders are part of a deceptive conspiracy to cover up the truth of church history.
      Some here knew Leonard Arrington. I have enjoyed his writings. Is it fair to say he was demoted from his position as Church Historian to a professor at BYU? Is it fair to claim Elder Packer was an unethical liar?
    • By canard78
      Elder Maynes CES devotional went into extensive detail on the first vision accounts last night. 
      Starts at 35:20:
      https://www.lds.org/broadcasts/the-truth-restored?lang=eng&_r=1
      I'm delighted that the essays and these topics are gradually becoming more mainstream. My mum (a primary president) even plans to use parts of the vision essay in sharing time this month (it's the "truth restored" section of the manual). I'll share this talk and article with her too as it's got some useful suggestions.
      A couple of questions: 
      - He said Joseph "wrote or dictated" the four accounts. Is that the best description of how the official account was written? I'll have to look up the Bushman reference I'm thinking of as I seem to remember him saying somewhere that the official version was a bit more of a co-creation or collaboration with Rigdon. I might be misremembering that so will try to check it.
      - He also says that it's the best documented vision in history. I wondered what the other contenders would be. 
      Any other thoughts?
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