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David Bokovoy on Deutero and Trito Isaiah in the Book of Mormon


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2 hours ago, PacMan said:

So say it simply: do you and Bokovoy agree with her analysis of the Fourth Servant Song?

I know you weren't asking me these questions, but I'll chime in anyway. I think Barker's analysis is pretty strong. I know it's a minority position, but her analysis is strong enough to introduce reasonable doubt as to the post-exilic nature of the root text of Isaiah 53. My paradigm allows me to believe that not all of Isaiah 53 need be pre-exilic for the Book of Mormon to feature it, since I do believe that God values the end result of scripture and I am not tied to the view that the only acceptable scripture is the original urtext. But Barker has introduced an analysis sufficiently strong for me that I do not view Isaiah 53's presence as anachronistic or evidence against the Book at all. Either the full text was pre-exilic, or the seeds of it were, and God expanded on them while dictating the 19th-century text of the Book of Mormon. 

2 hours ago, PacMan said:

Do you agree that Bokovoy's forthcoming analysis of Trito Isaiah and the BoM have real issues in light of biblical borrowing?

I haven't seen it yet, so I don't know. I will say that Bokovoy would probably not be impressed with that source; we know Lehi was aware of Jeremiah and likely retained some of his teachings (an analysis of Jeremiah's influence in the Book of Mormon - now THAT would be interesting), but chances are there was not enough time for Deutero-Isaiah to make use of them. However, the thought that Deutero-Isaiah expands and contextualizes an earlier Isaian corpus has promise.  

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1 hour ago, Nevo said:

If you think my offhand guess is "garbage," then feel free to refute it. If 20 percent of Old Testament scholars today hold that Isaiah 40-66 was written in the eighth-century, you should be able to provide a long list of names. I've only been able to identify 2 or 3 scholars that have argued for this view in the last 25 years.

I don't need to refute anything that has no support.  You still don't provide even the most minimal antecdotal evidence to support 2%.  If there are only 2 or 3 scholars that support the traditional view, then that means you know of 98 or 147 scholars that don't.  Go ahead.  Name them.  Then I'll think about rebutting your 2% notion.

Be sure, I'm not asking you to believe 20% is the number.  I remember that number but I can't remember where.  I'm more hoping that someone else recognizes it and cites the source.  You, on the other hand, are asserting 2% with bombastic certainty.  If you stand by it, back it up with names.  Go on.  I'm waiting.  For all 147 of them.

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5 hours ago, PacMan said:

I don't need to refute anything that has no support.  You still don't provide even the most minimal antecdotal evidence to support 2%.  If there are only 2 or 3 scholars that support the traditional view, then that means you know of 98 or 147 scholars that don't.  Go ahead.  Name them.  Then I'll think about rebutting your 2% notion.

Be sure, I'm not asking you to believe 20% is the number.  I remember that number but I can't remember where.  I'm more hoping that someone else recognizes it and cites the source.  You, on the other hand, are asserting 2% with bombastic certainty.  If you stand by it, back it up with names.  Go on.  I'm waiting.  For all 147 of them.

Well, you're going to have to settle for 100 because I don't feel like doing this all night. These are all from the last 25 years or so:

  • Adams, J. W.
  • Albertz, R.
  • Baltzer, D.
  • Baltzer, K.
  • Barker, M.
  • Barstad, H. M.
  • Barton, J.
  • Bass, D. M.
  • Berges, U.
  • Berlin, A.
  • Beuken, W. A. M.
  • Blenkinsopp, J.
  • Boer, R.
  • Bokovoy, D.
  • Brettler, M.
  • Brueggemann, W.
  • Carr, D.
  • Ceresko, A. R.
  • Childs, B. S.
  • Clements, R. E.
  • Clifford, H.
  • Clifford, R. J.
  • Collins, J. J.
  • Conrad, E. W.
  • Davies, P. R.
  • Day, J.
  • De Jong, M. J.
  • Derby, J.
  • Dijkstra, M.
  • Feuerstein, R.
  • Fokkelman, J. P.
  • Franke, C. A.
  • Freedman, D. N.
  • Goldingay, J.
  • Goulder, M.
  • Halpern, B.
  • Hanson, P. D.
  • Hendel, R.
  • Hermisson, H-J.
  • Holladay, W. L.
  • Holter, K.
  • Hoop, R. de
  • Janzen, J. G.
  • Joachimsen, K.
  • Knoppers, G. N.
  • Koenen, K.
  • Koole, J. L.
  • Korpel, M. C. A.
  • Kratz, R.
  • Kraus, H-J.
  • Laato, A.
  • Landy, F.
  • Lau, W.
  • Leclerc, T. L.
  • Leene, H.
  • Leeuwen, K.  van
  • Løland, H.
  • Lynch, M. J.
  • Machinist, P.
  • McClellan, D. O.
  • McEvenue, S.
  • Melugin, R. F.
  • Michel, D.
  • Nihan, C.
  • Nurmela, R.
  • Olyan, S. M.
  • Paul, S. M.
  • Payne, D.
  • Prinsloo, W. S.
  • Rendtorff, R.
  • Roberts, J. J. M.
  • Rofé, A.
  • Romer, T.
  • Rudman, D.
  • Ruszbowski, L.
  • Schaudig, H.
  • Schmid, K.
  • Schramm, B.
  • Seitz, C.
  • Siedl, T.
  • Smith, M. S.
  • Smith, P. A.
  • Sommer, B. D.
  • Spencer, B. J.
  • Steck, O. H.
  • Stone, B. W.
  • Stromberg, J.
  • Sweeney, M.
  • Taragan, H.
  • Tiemeyer, L-S.
  • Toorn, K. van der
  • Van Seters, J.
  • Watts, J. D. W.
  • Weippert, M.
  • Wells, R. D.
  • Werlitz, J.
  • Willey, P. T.
  • Williamson, H. G. M.
  • Wright, D.
  • Zapff, B. M.
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1 hour ago, Nevo said:

Well, you're going to have to settle for 100 because I don't feel like doing this all night. These are all from the last 25 years or so:

  • Adams, J. W.
  • Albertz, R.
  • Baltzer, D.
  • Baltzer, K.
  • Barker, M.
  • Barstad, H. M.
  • Barton, J.
  • Bass, D. M.
  • Berges, U.
  • Berlin, A.
  • Beuken, W. A. M.
  • Blenkinsopp, J.
  • Boer, R.
  • Bokovoy, D.
  • Brettler, M.
  • Brueggemann, W.
  • Carr, D.
  • Ceresko, A. R.
  • Childs, B. S.
  • Clements, R. E.
  • Clifford, H.
  • Clifford, R. J.
  • Collins, J. J.
  • Conrad, E. W.
  • Davies, P. R.
  • Day, J.
  • De Jong, M. J.
  • Derby, J.
  • Dijkstra, M.
  • Feuerstein, R.
  • Fokkelman, J. P.
  • Franke, C. A.
  • Freedman, D. N.
  • Goldingay, J.
  • Goulder, M.
  • Halpern, B.
  • Hanson, P. D.
  • Hendel, R.
  • Hermisson, H-J.
  • Holladay, W. L.
  • Holter, K.
  • Hoop, R. de
  • Janzen, J. G.
  • Joachimsen, K.
  • Knoppers, G. N.
  • Koenen, K.
  • Koole, J. L.
  • Korpel, M. C. A.
  • Kratz, R.
  • Kraus, H-J.
  • Laato, A.
  • Landy, F.
  • Lau, W.
  • Leclerc, T. L.
  • Leene, H.
  • Leeuwen, K.  van
  • Løland, H.
  • Lynch, M. J.
  • Machinist, P.
  • McClellan, D. O.
  • McEvenue, S.
  • Melugin, R. F.
  • Michel, D.
  • Nihan, C.
  • Nurmela, R.
  • Olyan, S. M.
  • Paul, S. M.
  • Payne, D.
  • Prinsloo, W. S.
  • Rendtorff, R.
  • Roberts, J. J. M.
  • Rofé, A.
  • Romer, T.
  • Rudman, D.
  • Ruszbowski, L.
  • Schaudig, H.
  • Schmid, K.
  • Schramm, B.
  • Seitz, C.
  • Siedl, T.
  • Smith, M. S.
  • Smith, P. A.
  • Sommer, B. D.
  • Spencer, B. J.
  • Steck, O. H.
  • Stone, B. W.
  • Stromberg, J.
  • Sweeney, M.
  • Taragan, H.
  • Tiemeyer, L-S.
  • Toorn, K. van der
  • Van Seters, J.
  • Watts, J. D. W.
  • Weippert, M.
  • Wells, R. D.
  • Werlitz, J.
  • Willey, P. T.
  • Williamson, H. G. M.
  • Wright, D.
  • Zapff, B. M.

And you include M. Barker. You make me giggle. 

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If the assumption is that JS was the one responsible for inserting a bunch of Isaiah chapters into the Book of Mormon, the textual history doesn't support it. If you look at the manuscripts, there's nothing discernible to suggest a Bible was used, and dictation witnesses uniformly stated that no books were used. And as far as the text is concerned, it's neither identical with the biblical text nor paraphrastic. It's in between, suggesting revealed words.

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21 minutes ago, champatsch said:

If the assumption is that JS was the one responsible for inserting a bunch of Isaiah chapters into the Book of Mormon, the textual history doesn't support it. If you look at the manuscripts, there's nothing discernible to suggest a Bible was used, and dictation witnesses uniformly stated that no books were used. And as far as the text is concerned, it's neither identical with the biblical text nor paraphrastic. It's in between, suggesting revealed words.

But again, if it's revealed, one must ask, why would God use Adam Clarke as a source?  Perhaps better than the KJV?  It seems to cut the legs off the notion that Joseph couldn't have hid something from Emma, though.  He hid his polygamy, apparently.  I suppose it goes without saying if Colby Townsend's work proves definitive in some sense, then our most reasonable conclusion is, Joseph used Adam Clarke.  If that is the case, then the most reasonable conclusion is Joseph could hide stuff from others, and if he could, why would he hide something?  Perhaps deception creeps into the whole affair more readily then we thought.  

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Do we agree on what constitutes third Isaiah? I am reading right now from Joe Spencer of BYU saying that there isn't third isaiah in the Book of Mormon if you say that third isaiah is chapters 56-66, which he is correct.There are two references from Isaiah 55

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1 hour ago, stemelbow said:
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If the assumption is that JS was the one responsible for inserting a bunch of Isaiah chapters into the Book of Mormon, the textual history doesn't support it. If you look at the manuscripts, there's nothing discernible to suggest a Bible was used, and dictation witnesses uniformly stated that no books were used. And as far as the text is concerned, it's neither identical with the biblical text nor paraphrastic. It's in between, suggesting revealed words.

But again, if it's revealed, one must ask, why would God use Adam Clarke as a source?

First, your question presupposes that God did "use Adam Clarke as a source."  I'm not sure that's a safe assumption.

Second, your question is pretty much an imponderable.  We may as well as "Why would God give a round metal ball to Lehi?"  Or "Why did Elisha tell Naaman to go bathe in the Jordan seven times?"  Or "Why did Jesus use spittle mud to heal the blind man?"

I think we often cannot speak intelligently as to why God operates as He does.  A few scriptures come to mind:

  • "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord." - Isaiah 55:8
  • "Wherefore, brethren, seek not to counsel the Lord, but to take counsel from his hand." - Jacob 4:10
  • "But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things." - 2 Nephi 2:24
  • "{God} comprehendeth all things, and all things are before him, and all things are round about him; and he is above all things, and in all things, and is through all things, and is round about all things; and all things are by him, and of him, even God, forever and ever." - D&C 88:41
  • "And the Lord said unto me: These two facts do exist, that there are two spirits, one being more intelligent than the other; there shall be another more intelligent than they; I am the Lord thy God, I am more intelligent than they all." - Abr. 3:19
  • "But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things." - 2 Nephi 2:24
  • "For now we see through a glass, darkly..." - 1 Cor.13:12

I think we should seek to understand things of the Spirit, but also accept the reality that the Lord seldom explains Himself.

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Perhaps better than the KJV?  It seems to cut the legs off the notion that Joseph couldn't have hid something from Emma, though. 

Emma seems like a credible witness.  Extrapolations and inferences about Clarke's commentary doesn't seem to be sufficient to impeach her credibility.

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He hid his polygamy, apparently. 

Not very well, apparently.  And Emma was speaking about the translation process.

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I suppose it goes without saying if Colby Townsend's work proves definitive in some sense, then our most reasonable conclusion is, Joseph used Adam Clarke. 

That's a mighty big "if."  

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If that is the case, then the most reasonable conclusion is Joseph could hide stuff from others, and if he could, why would he hide something?  Perhaps deception creeps into the whole affair more readily then we thought.  

Again, "if."

The cumulative evidence from percipient witnesses is pretty compelling.  I'm certainly willing to listen to what Townsend has to say, but I will also be reading S. Kent Jackson's forthcoming Interpreter article.  The likelihood of anything "definitive in some sense" coming out of all this is, I think, de minimis.  

Thanks,

-Smac

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38 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Emma seems like a credible witness.

Keep in mind that this is the same interview where she also said: "There was no revelation on either polygamy or spiritual wives. . . . No such thing as polygamy or spiritual wifery was taught, publicly or privately, before my husband's death that I have now or ever had any knowledge of. . . . He had no other wife but me; nor did he to my knowledge ever have. . . . I know that he had no other wife or wives than myself, in any sense, either spiritual or otherwise" (see Newell and Avery, Mormon Enigma: Emma Hale Smith, 301–302).

Also, when she said "he had neither mss nor book to read from," she was responding to the speculation that Joseph Smith had used the Spalding manuscript to create the Book of Mormon.

In any case, a KJV Bible clearly was used at some point in the composition of the Book of Mormon. That the Book of Mormon is dependent on the KJV is not in question.

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30 minutes ago, Nevo said:

In any case, a KJV Bible clearly was used at some point in the composition of the Book of Mormon. That the Book of Mormon is dependent on the KJV is not in question.

I don't dispute that the Book of Mormon quotes from the King James Bible, in 36 long segments and in a lot of shorter snippets. Some LDS muddy the waters, however, by not calling Matthew 7 a quote, for example, even though there are only three very minor differences between 3 Nephi 14 and Matthew 7. Skousen and I don't do that. We call a quote a quote. But we try to be clear that the textual evidence indicates that JS wasn't the one who composed the text using a Bible. Had he done that, the manuscripts and the original text would be different.

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16 minutes ago, Nevo said:
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Emma seems like a credible witness.

Keep in mind that this is the same interview where she also said: "There was no revelation on either polygamy or spiritual wives. . . . No such thing as polygamy or spiritual wifery was taught, publicly or privately, before my husband's death that I have now or ever had any knowledge of. . . . He had no other wife but me; nor did he to my knowledge ever have. . . . I know that he had no other wife or wives than myself, in any sense, either spiritual or otherwise" (see Newell and Avery, Mormon Enigma: Emma Hale Smith, 301–302).

Well, that's a fair point.  See here:

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Emma Smith’s last testimony is used to support the narrative that Joseph Smith’s translation of the Book of Mormon was miraculous, particularly that he didn’t have a book or manuscript to read from, and that he could not have concealed a manuscript from her.1

Question. What of the truth of Mormonism?

Answer. I know Mormonism to be the truth; and believe the Church to have been established by divine direction. I have complete faith in it. In writing for your father I frequently wrote da y after day, often sitting at the table close by him, he sitting with his face buried in his hat, with the stone in it, and dictating hour after hour with nothing between us.

Question. Had he not a book or manuscript from which he read, or dictated to you?

Answer. He had neither manuscript nor book to read from.

Question. Could he not have had, and you not know it?

Answer. If he had had anything of the kind he could not have concealed it from me.

However, Emma’s witness of the Book of Mormon follows directly after her testimony on polygamy:

Question. What about the revelation on polygamy? Did Joseph Smith have anything like it? What of spiritual wifery?

Answer. There was no revelation on either polygamy or spiritual wives. There were some rumors of something of the sort, of which I asked my husband. He assured me that all there was of it was, that, in a chat about plural wives, he had said, “Well, such a system might possibly be, if everybody was agreed to it, and would behave as they should; but they would not; and besides, it was contrary to the will of heaven.” No such thing as polygamy or spiritual wifery was taught, publicly or privately, before my husband’s death, that I have now, or ever had any knowledge of.

Question. Did he not have other wives than yourself?

Answer. He had no other wife but me; nor did he to my knowledge ever have.

Question. Did he not hold marital relations with women other than yourself?

Answer. He did not have improper relations with any woman that ever came to my knowledge.

Question. Was there nothing about spiritual wives that you recollect?

Answer. At one time my husband came to me and asked me if I had heard certain rumors about spiritual marriages, or anything of the kind; and assured me that if I had, that they were without foundation; that there was no such doctrine, and never should be with his knowledge or consent. I know that he had no other wife or wives than myself, in any sense, either spiritual or otherwise.

If we accept that Joseph Smith practiced polygamy (and there is good contemporary evidence supporting this) then we can conclude the following about Emma (and Joseph):

  1. Emma was lying. She knew the truth and was willing to tell a bald-faced lie.
  2. Emma was telling the truth: she was naive about the actions of her husband or Joseph was adept at hiding his actions and information from her (or some combination).

Both of these condition our confidence in Emma as a reliable witness on the creation of the Book of Mormon. From the above statements on polygamy we can be reasonably confident that Emma was either capable of lying or, alternatively, that she was naive about her husband’s actions or that Joseph was adept at hiding information from her. All possibilities call into question her testimony on the Book of Mormon.

I'm not willing to attribute "bald-faced l{ying}" to Emma.  She was 74 when she was interviewed by her son, and had suffered challenges and tribulations far worse than anything most of us will encounter.  Also, her inconsistent approach to polygamy was well-known.  Her conflict about it was deep-seated.  From FAIR:

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Question: How did Emma Hale Smith react to Joseph's practice of plural marriage?

Emma was aware of Joseph's plural marriage and sometimes gave permission, but did much to try and thwart it

Emma was aware of plural marriage; it is not clear at exactly what point she was made aware, partly due to there being relatively few early sources on the matter. Emma was generally opposed to the practice of plural marriage, and did much to try and thwart it. There were times, however, when Emma gave permission for Joseph's plural marriages, though she soon changed her mind.[1] Emma was troubled by plural marriage, but her difficulties arose partly from her conviction that Joseph was a prophet:

Zina Huntington remembered a conversation between Elizabeth [Davis] and Emma [Smith] in which Elizabeth asked the prophet’s wife if she felt that Joseph was a prophet. Yes, Emma answered, but I wish to God I did not know it.[2]

Emma did teach her children that Joseph had never taught the doctrine of plural marriage, and blamed its introduction on Brigham Young

Emma never denied Joseph's prophetic calling; she did, however, teach her children that Joseph had never taught the doctrine of plural marriage, and blamed its introduction on Brigham Young. Torn between two certitudes—her conviction of Joseph's prophetic calling, and her hatred of plural marriage—Emma had difficult choices to make for which we ought not to judge her.

But, the critics ought to let all of Emma speak for herself—she had a great trial, but also had great knowledge. That she continued to support Joseph's calling and remain with him, despite her feelings about plural marriage, speaks much of her convictions. As she told Parley P. Pratt years later:

I believe he [Joseph] was everything he professed to be.[3]

Allen J. Stout: "from moments of passionate denunciation [Emma] would subside into tearful repentance and acknowledge that her violent opposition to that principle was instigated by the power of darkness"

Allen J. Stout, who served as a bodyguard for Joseph, recounted a conversation he overheard in the Mansion House between Joseph and his tormented wife. A summary of his account states that "from moments of passionate denunciation [Emma] would subside into tearful repentance and acknowledge that her violent opposition to that principle was instigated by the power of darkness; that Satan was doing his utmost to destroy her, etc. And solemnly came the Prophet's inspired warning: 'Yes, and he will accomplish your overthrow, if you do not heed my counsel.'"[4]

Emma Smith: "The principle is right but I am jealous hearted. Now never tell anybody that you heard me find fault with that [principle;] we have got to humble ourselves and repent of it

Emma's inner conflict was also dramatized in another report:

Maria Jane Johnston, who lived with Emma as a servant girl, recalled the Prophet's wife looking very downcast one day and telling her that the principle of plural marriage was right and came from Heavenly Father. "What I said I have got [to] repent of," lamented Emma. "The principle is right but I am jealous hearted. Now never tell anybody that you heard me find fault with that [principle;] we have got to humble ourselves and repent of it."[5]

Emma Smith: "I desire a fruitful, active mind, that I may be able to comprehend the designs of God, when revealed through his servants without doubting"

Emma asked Joseph for a blessing not long before he went to Carthage. Joseph told her to write the best blessing she could, and he would sign it upon his return. Wrote Emma:

I desire with all my heart to honor and respect my husband as my head, ever to live in his confidence and by acting in unison with him retain the place which God has given me by his side...I desire the spirit of God to know and understand myself, I desire a fruitful, active mind, that I may be able to comprehend the designs of God, when revealed through his servants without doubting.[6]

So when I consider Emma's statements about polygamy, I consider it in the context of her life, and also her weaknesses, and also in light of Mormon 9:31 ("Condemn me not because of mine imperfection, neither my father, because of his imperfection, neither them who have written before him; but rather give thanks unto God that he hath made manifest unto you our imperfections, that ye may learn to be more wise than we have been.")

When I consider Emma's statements about the translation of the Book of Mormon, I consider it as above, but also in tandem with the other witnesses.  Emma was far from the only source of information about the circumstances in which Joseph brought forth the Book of Mormon.

16 minutes ago, Nevo said:

Also, when she said "he had neither mss nor book to read from," she was responding to the speculation that Joseph Smith had used the Spalding manuscript to create the Book of Mormon.

Could you explain how you know that?  Spaulding isn't referenced in the 1879 interview.

16 minutes ago, Nevo said:

In any case, a KJV Bible clearly was used at some point in the composition of the Book of Mormon.

Well, sorta.  "Clearly?"  I'm not sure about that.

16 minutes ago, Nevo said:

That the Book of Mormon is dependent on the KJV is not in question.

Not sure what you mean by "dependent."

Thanks,

-Smac

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3 hours ago, champatsch said:

If the assumption is that JS was the one responsible for inserting a bunch of Isaiah chapters into the Book of Mormon, the textual history doesn't support it. If you look at the manuscripts, there's nothing discernible to suggest a Bible was used, and dictation witnesses uniformly stated that no books were used. And as far as the text is concerned, it's neither identical with the biblical text nor paraphrastic. It's in between, suggesting revealed words.

Do we know what occurred between when the dictation was done in June of 1829 and the publishing of the book in March of 1830?  That's a considerable amount of time to edit and rework the book, inserting biblical passages, etc.  Looking at this from a critic's point of view, the entire book could have been written during this time and the rock and hat demonstration could have been merely for show.

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33 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Could you explain how you know that?  Spaulding isn't referenced in the 1879 interview.

That was the context for the question about Sidney Rigdon. A few days after the interview, Joseph Smith III wrote to critic James T. Cobb: "Mrs. Emma Bidamon, formerly Emma Smith nee Hale . . . informs me that she was married to Joseph Smith, my father, in South Bainbridge by a Justice of the Peace, whose name she believes was Tarbiell or Tarbell; that she was married at the house, or office of the Squire by him, and not by Sidney Rigdon, nor a Presbyterian clergyman. That she never knew Sidney Rigdon until long after the Book of Mormon was translated, and she thinks, published. . . . that during no part of [the translation] did Joseph Smith have any Mss. or Book of any kind from which to read, or dictate, except the metalic plates, which she knew he had. Every argument advanced by you in support of the theory that Sidney Rigdon was the responsible 'Black Pope' behind the throne moving upon the pliant mind of Joseph Smith, it seems to me, is defeated by this plain statement. . . . Some other things learned by me during my visit confirm me in the faith that there was no collusion between Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon in palming off a fraud upon the people, and also that Joseph Smith had no Spaulding Mss from which the Book of Mormon was plagiarized" (Joseph Smith III to James T. Cobb, 14 February 1879, in Vogel, EMD 1:544–545).

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Not sure what you mean by "dependent."

I mean literarily dependent.

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51 minutes ago, Robert J Anderson said:

Do we know what occurred between when the dictation was done in June of 1829 and the publishing of the book in March of 1830?  That's a considerable amount of time to edit and rework the book, inserting biblical passages, etc.  Looking at this from a critic's point of view, the entire book could have been written during this time and the rock and hat demonstration could have been merely for show.

Quoth Royal Skousen:

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The printed versions of the Book of Mormon derive from two manuscripts. The first, called the original manuscript (O), was written by at least three scribes as Joseph Smith translated and dictated. The most important scribe was Oliver Cowdery. This manuscript was begun no later than April 1829 and finished in June 1829.

A copy of the original was then made by Oliver Cowdery and two other scribes. This copy is called the printer’s manuscript (P) since it was the one normally used to set the type for the first (1830) edition of the Book of Mormon. It was begun in July 1829 and finished early in 1830.

The printer’s manuscript is not an exact copy of the original manuscript. There are on the average three changes per original manuscript page. These changes appear to be natural scribal errors; there is little or no evidence of conscious editing. Most of the changes are minor, and about one in five produce a discernible difference in meaning. Because they were all relatively minor, most of the errors thus introduced into the text have remained in the printed editions of the Book of Mormon and have not been detected and corrected except by reference to the original manuscript. About twenty of these errors were corrected in the 1981 edition.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 hour ago, Nevo said:

That was the context for the question about Sidney Rigdon. A few days after the interview, Joseph Smith III wrote to critic James T. Cobb: "Mrs. Emma Bidamon, formerly Emma Smith nee Hale . . . informs me that she was married to Joseph Smith, my father, in South Bainbridge by a Justice of the Peace, whose name she believes was Tarbiell or Tarbell; that she was married at the house, or office of the Squire by him, and not by Sidney Rigdon, nor a Presbyterian clergyman. That she never knew Sidney Rigdon until long after the Book of Mormon was translated, and she thinks, published. . . . that during no part of [the translation] did Joseph Smith have any Mss. or Book of any kind from which to read, or dictate, except the metalic plates, which she knew he had. Every argument advanced by you in support of the theory that Sidney Rigdon was the responsible 'Black Pope' behind the throne moving upon the pliant mind of Joseph Smith, it seems to me, is defeated by this plain statement. . . . Some other things learned by me during my visit confirm me in the faith that there was no collusion between Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon in palming off a fraud upon the people, and also that Joseph Smith had no Spaulding Mss from which the Book of Mormon was plagiarized" (Joseph Smith III to James T. Cobb, 14 February 1879, in Vogel, EMD 1:544–545).

Regardless of whether or not she was responding to the Spalding Theory, she says that there was "no book or manuscript". That statement stands and is corroborated universally by all eyewitnesses. 

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20 hours ago, OGHoosier said:

I know you weren't asking me these questions, but I'll chime in anyway. I think Barker's analysis is pretty strong. I know it's a minority position, but her analysis is strong enough to introduce reasonable doubt as to the post-exilic nature of the root text of Isaiah 53. My paradigm allows me to believe that not all of Isaiah 53 need be pre-exilic for the Book of Mormon to feature it, since I do believe that God values the end result of scripture and I am not tied to the view that the only acceptable scripture is the original urtext. But Barker has introduced an analysis sufficiently strong for me that I do not view Isaiah 53's presence as anachronistic or evidence against the Book at all. Either the full text was pre-exilic, or the seeds of it were, and God expanded on them while dictating the 19th-century text of the Book of Mormon. 

I haven't seen it yet, so I don't know. I will say that Bokovoy would probably not be impressed with that source; we know Lehi was aware of Jeremiah and likely retained some of his teachings (an analysis of Jeremiah's influence in the Book of Mormon - now THAT would be interesting), but chances are there was not enough time for Deutero-Isaiah to make use of them. However, the thought that Deutero-Isaiah expands and contextualizes an earlier Isaian corpus has promise.  

I agree.  This is not so much a numbers game, as PacMan seems to believe, but rather one of what was the true extent of the Josianic and Deuteronomistic revolution?  That is a much more germane question than the fallacious notion of vox populi vox Dei.

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41 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

I agree.  This is not so much a numbers game, as PacMan seems to believe, but rather one of what was the true extent of the Josianic and Deuteronomistic revolution?  That is a much more germane question than the fallacious notion of vox populi vox Dei.

Robert, I think you're misunderstanding the argument.  I was critical (and remain dubious) of Bokovoy's anticipated research due to borrowing.  It will be almost impossible to show that Trito-Isaiah elements in the BoM could not have derived from pre-BoM biblical text.  Without demonstrating that the Trito-Isaiah elements in the BoM are both material and unique, his work will be a complete waste of time.

As part of that, I gratuitously conceded a 80/20 split of academics that favor multiple authors to those those that support a unified author Isaiah theory.  I really don't care what that number is, but Nevo wanted to debate that those supporting a unified author is closer to 2%.  His bombastic certitude made me chuckle, and so he copied and pasted a bunch of random names to support his claim...including Maragaret Barker, among them.  This isn't a numbers games to me at all.  Ad populum, has never been my style.

Edited by PacMan
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5 hours ago, smac97 said:

First, your question presupposes that God did "use Adam Clarke as a source."  I'm not sure that's a safe assumption.

Yes, that's what I said, when I used "if".  

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Second, your question is pretty much an imponderable.  We may as well as "Why would God give a round metal ball to Lehi?"  Or "Why did Elisha tell Naaman to go bathe in the Jordan seven times?"  Or "Why did Jesus use spittle mud to heal the blind man?"

I think we often cannot speak intelligently as to why God operates as He does.  A few scriptures come to mind:

  • "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord." - Isaiah 55:8
  • "Wherefore, brethren, seek not to counsel the Lord, but to take counsel from his hand." - Jacob 4:10
  • "But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things." - 2 Nephi 2:24
  • "{God} comprehendeth all things, and all things are before him, and all things are round about him; and he is above all things, and in all things, and is through all things, and is round about all things; and all things are by him, and of him, even God, forever and ever." - D&C 88:41
  • "And the Lord said unto me: These two facts do exist, that there are two spirits, one being more intelligent than the other; there shall be another more intelligent than they; I am the Lord thy God, I am more intelligent than they all." - Abr. 3:19
  • "But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things." - 2 Nephi 2:24
  • "For now we see through a glass, darkly..." - 1 Cor.13:12

I think we should seek to understand things of the Spirit, but also accept the reality that the Lord seldom explains Himself.

I don't think that way.  I think we ought to be able to explain what is expected or not.  To run to a cop out of "well God works in mysterious ways" is just spitting out a cop out.  So we disagree.  To me, the proposition that God helped write or create the BoM has to be supported not assumed.  

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Emma seems like a credible witness.  Extrapolations and inferences about Clarke's commentary doesn't seem to be sufficient to impeach her credibility.

If not, then it's possible a matter of her being deceived and not realizing it.  But no one need to take it as far as you.  Even if she did fib, as she did in regards to polygamy, perhaps she felt justified in doing so.  

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Not very well, apparently.  And Emma was speaking about the translation process.

That's a mighty big "if."  

Of course.  But we haven't seen the results of Townsends efforts yet.  If and when it comes out, maybe we'll learn it's not such a big "if" afterall.  

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Again, "if."

The cumulative evidence from percipient witnesses is pretty compelling.  I'm certainly willing to listen to what Townsend has to say, but I will also be reading S. Kent Jackson's forthcoming Interpreter article.  The likelihood of anything "definitive in some sense" coming out of all this is, I think, de minimis.  

Thanks,

-Smac

I saw Interpreter's announcement of Jackson and it feels really weak.  But I'd be happy to be surprised by the end.  Of course we're talking two different things too.  Jackson is addressing whether the examples given for JS' reliance on Clarke for the JST are sufficient reason to think JS used Clarke, apparently.  This is a whole other matter.  And of course when it comes to apologetics nothing seems definitive because no matter what is said, about some things, believers are gonna believe and some believer will say something that will argue it's possible anyway.  Nothing new there, nearly every prediction made by a supposed prophet when fails is hardly a definitive cause for believers to unbelieve.  

Edited by stemelbow
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2 hours ago, OGHoosier said:

That statement stands and is corroborated universally by all eyewitnesses.

By "corroborated universally by all eyewitnesses" I assume you mean David Whitmer, who explicitly stated that he wasn't "all of the time in the immediate presence of the translator." Did anyone else corroborate Emma's statement?

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1 hour ago, PacMan said:

Robert, I think you're misunderstanding the argument.  I was critical (and remain dubious) of Bokovoy's anticipated research due to borrowing.  It will be almost impossible to show that Trito-Isaiah elements in the BoM could not have derived from pre-BoM biblical text.  Without demonstrating that the Trito-Isaiah elements in the BoM are both material and unique, his work will be a complete waste of time.

As part of that, I gratuitously conceded a 80/20 split of academics that favor multiple authors to those those that support a unified author Isaiah theory.  I really don't care what that number is, but Nevo wanted to debate that those supporting a unified author is closer to 2%.  His bombastic certitude made me chuckle, and so he copied and pasted a bunch of random names to support his claim...including Maragaret Barker, among them.  This isn't a numbers games to me at all.  Ad populum, has never been my style.

So you've concluded no reliance on Clarke before you see the results?  Why is looking into it a waste of time?  The assumption here is Trito-Isaiah elements in the BoM aren't unique, particularly, as they seem sourced in Clarke.  I mean I guess we'll have to wait and see how it all turns out.  But it seems odd conclusions have already been reached.  

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3 hours ago, stemelbow said:

So you've concluded no reliance on Clarke before you see the results?  Why is looking into it a waste of time?  The assumption here is Trito-Isaiah elements in the BoM aren't unique, particularly, as they seem sourced in Clarke.  I mean I guess we'll have to wait and see how it all turns out.  But it seems odd conclusions have already been reached.  

Clarke?  When did Bokovoy mention Clarke?  Maybe he did but I missed it.  Bokovoy actually notes that the lack of Trito-Isaiah is "significant" before his big swing-and-a-miss, stating:

"Since 1892, biblical scholars have recognized that Isaiah 56-66 contain an anthology of approximately twelve passages of oracles written by unknown prophets in the years immediately following the Jewish return from Babylon.  If this post-exilic material appeared in the Book of Mormon, it would prove detrimental to traditional claims that the book is an ancient record.

Unfortunately, Mormon apologists who attempted to address these issues have had very little exposure to critical research on Isaiah.  In reality, the Book of Mormon relies heavily upon what scholars refer to as Trito-Isaiah.  Not only are these post-exilic chapters sometimes cited and alluded to throughout the book, the editors responsible for this final addition to the Isaianic corpus shaped the material the Book of Mormon cites as authentic pre-exilic Isaianic prophecies."

No mention of Clarke, there.  And even if the material is in Clark, the borrowing issue does not magically go away.  While I wait to see how he avoids the borrowing paradigm so evident in Deutro-Isaiah, I'll...keep waiting.

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13 minutes ago, PacMan said:

Clarke?  When did Bokovoy mention Clarke?  Maybe he did but I missed it.  Bokovoy actually notes that the lack of Trito-Isaiah is "significant" before his big swing-and-a-miss, stating:

"Since 1892, biblical scholars have recognized that Isaiah 56-66 contain an anthology of approximately twelve passages of oracles written by unknown prophets in the years immediately following the Jewish return from Babylon.  If this post-exilic material appeared in the Book of Mormon, it would prove detrimental to traditional claims that the book is an ancient record.

Unfortunately, Mormon apologists who attempted to address these issues have had very little exposure to critical research on Isaiah.  In reality, the Book of Mormon relies heavily upon what scholars refer to as Trito-Isaiah.  Not only are these post-exilic chapters sometimes cited and alluded to throughout the book, the editors responsible for this final addition to the Isaianic corpus shaped the material the Book of Mormon cites as authentic pre-exilic Isaianic prophecies."

No mention of Clarke, there.  And even if the material is in Clark, the borrowing issue does not magically go away.  While I wait to see how he avoids the borrowing paradigm so evident in Deutro-Isaiah, I'll...keep waiting.

Were you aware that the Clarke's book had the full Bible in it and side by side translations changes. So it's possible that Joseph Smith didn't need the Bible after all while working on the BoM, if he did use it for that. 

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5 hours ago, Robert J Anderson said:

So, how do we know what Royal Skousen calls the original manuscript wasn't the product of work between June 1829 and when the printer made his manuscript (closer to March 1830)?

I'm not sure I understand your question.  Have you been following Skousen's work on O?

Thanks,

-Smac

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