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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Bored in Sunday School

Spencer W. Kimball reproved those who get bored in Church:

"We do not go to Sabbath meetings to be entertained or even solely to be instructed. We go to worship the Lord. It is an individual responsibility, and regardless of what is said from the pulpit, if one wishes to worship the Lord in spirit and in truth, he may do so by attending his meetings, partaking of the sacrament, and contemplating the beauties of the gospel. If the service is a failure to you, you have failed. No one can worship for you; you must do your own waiting upon the Lord." (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Spencer W. Kimball, chapter 16.)


Featured today at LDS.org

An article written by Tad R. Callister, Sunday School general president, is being featured today on the front page of LDS.org. In this article, Callister quotes Bruce R. McConkie's 1980 BYU speech, "The Seven Deadly Heresies." The passage quoted and referred to by Callister is as follows:

"We come into these congregations, and sometimes a speaker brings a jug of living water that has in it many gallons. And when he pours it out on the congregation, all the members have brought is a single cup and so that’s all they take away. Or maybe they have their hands over the cups, and they don’t get anything to speak of.

"On other occasions we have meetings where the speaker comes and all he brings is a little cup of eternal truth, and the members of the congregation come with a large jug, and all they get in their jugs is the little dribble that came from a man who should have known better and who should have prepared himself and talked from the revelations and spoken by the power of the Holy Spirit. We are obligated in the Church to speak by the power of the Spirit. We are commanded to treasure up the words of light and truth and then give forth the portion that is appropriate and needful on every occasion." (Click here.)

In the above passage, McConkie describes one aspect of the relationship that should exist between teacher and learner. However, as Spencer W. Kimball points out, we must do our own waiting upon the Lord, and that is possible even when the teacher brings an empty jug.

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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Three False Prophets

The Savior warned that prior to His Second Coming, "many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many." (Matt. 24:11.) False prophets come in different types. This post will examine three.


"REPLACE-THE-TRUE-PROPHET" FALSE PROPHETS

This false prophet has received instructions from God to overthrow the existing prophet and run things himself. Howard W. Hunter once met someone who is an example of this type of false prophet.

"On February 7, 1993, President Hunter went to Brigham Young University to speak at a fireside that was attended by 17,000 people. He was just beginning his address when a man rushed onto the stand, carrying a briefcase in one hand and a black object in the other. 'Stop right there!' the man shouted. He threatened to detonate what he claimed was a bomb unless President Hunter read a prepared statement. President Hunter refused and stood resolutely at the pulpit the entire time the man was threatening him. As fear and commotion spread through the building, the audience began to sing 'We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet.' After a few minutes of suspense, two security personnel restrained the man, and President Hunter was lowered to the floor for safety. When order was restored, he rested briefly and then continued with his remarks. 'Life has a fair number of challenges in it,' he began, and then added, 'as demonstrated.'" (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Howard W. Hunter, pp. 28-29.)

The man later told the Deseret News in an interview from his jail cell, "I am just doing exactly what the Lord has commanded me." He said he had asked President Hunter to "read a three-page letter that released the Twelve Apostles and the First Presidency of the church and confirmed [himself] as president of the church." He also said that when the audience started singing "We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet," he thought they were singing to him. (See Deseret News, Feb 9, 1993.)


"FIX-THE-DOCTRINE" FALSE PROPHETS

This false prophet doesn't claim to be a prophet, but is a false prophet nevertheless because he views his knowledge of God as being more reliable than revelations received by the true prophet.

The Lord, in D&C 124:84, identifies such a false prophet in Nauvoo who "aspireth to establish his counsel instead of the counsel which I have ordained, even that of the Presidency of my Church."

The group "Ordain Women" is an example of this type of false prophet. The group openly advocates the ordination of LDS women to the priesthood, based on logic, scripture, personal inspiration, and the carefully selected words of certain early Latter-day Saint leaders; but not based on any special or current revelation from God. Nobody in the group claims to be a prophet, but they all want to fix the current LDS doctrine with respect to women and the priesthood.


BECOMING FALSE PROPHETS TO OURSELVES

Ezra Taft Benson, quoting N. Eldon Tanner, said: "'The Prophet spoke out clearly on Friday morning, telling us what our responsibilities are...

"'A man said to me after that, 'You know, there are people in our state who believe in following the Prophet in everything they think is right, but when it is something they think isn't right, and it doesn't appeal to them, then that's different.' He said, 'Then they become their own prophet. They decide what the Lord wants and what the Lord doesn't want.'

"'I thought how true, and how serious when we begin to choose which of the covenants, which of the commandments we will keep and follow, we are taking the law of the Lord into our own hands and become our own prophets, and believe me, we will be led astray, because we are false prophets to ourselves when we do not follow the Prophet of God.'" (Liahona, June 1981.)

According to D&C 84:44, we should "live by every word that proceedeth forth from the mouth of God." If we can't do that, we are false prophets to ourselves.


COUNSEL TO HELP US AVOID BEING DECEIVED

1.  Dallin H. Oaks: : "Our Heavenly Father has given His children two lines of communication with Him—what we may call the personal line and the priesthood line. All should understand and be guided by both of these essential lines of communication.

"In the personal line we pray directly to our Heavenly Father, and He answers us by the channels He has established, without any mortal intermediary....

"The priesthood line is the channel by which God has spoken to His children through the scriptures in times past. And it is this line through which He currently speaks through the teachings and counsel of living prophets and apostles and other inspired leaders....

"Unlike the personal line, in which our Heavenly Father communicates with us directly through the Holy Ghost, the priesthood line of communication has the additional and necessary intermediaries of our Savior, Jesus Christ; His Church; and His appointed leaders....

"We cannot communicate reliably through the direct, personal line if we are disobedient to or out of harmony with the priesthood line.... Unfortunately, it is common for persons who are violating God's commandments or disobedient to the counsel of their priesthood leaders to declare that God has revealed to them that they are excused from obeying some commandment or from following some counsel. Such persons may be receiving revelation or inspiration, but it is not from the source they suppose." (Ensign, Nov. 2010.)

2.  Spencer W. Kimball: "An important rule was given to us by the Prophet Joseph with which you are probably familiar: 'I will give you one of the Keys of the mysteries of the Kingdom. It is an eternal principle, that has existed with God from all eternity. That man who rises up to condemn others, finding fault with the Church, saying that they are out of the way, while he himself is righteous, then know assuredly, that that man is on the high road to apostasy; and if he does not repent, will apostatize, as God lives.'" (Ensign, Jan. 1973.)

3.  Spencer W. Kimball: "President [George Q.] Cannon warned.... that the Lord gives the authority to judge and condemn only to the regularly constituted councils of the Church and not to man generally; 'and those who lift their voices … against the authority of the Holy Priesthood ... will go down to hell, unless they repent.'" (Ensign, Jan. 1973.)

4.  M. Russell Ballard: "Beware of those who speak and publish in opposition to God's true prophets and who actively proselyte others with reckless disregard for the eternal well-being of those whom they seduce." (Ensign, Nov. 1999.)

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Monday, November 30, 2015

Lest haply we be found even to fight against God

In 1846, the main body of Saints left civilization and entered a trackless wilderness in search of Zion. Again today, we travel in a wilderness, this time one that deceitfully impersonates civilization.

Recent handbook changes effecting the children of same-sex marriage partners have resulted in an outburst of criticism on the blogs, in social media, and in print. But let's remember that these handbook changes were made by the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

Some Church members, in openly criticizing these fifteen men, seem to have forgotten that God has placed upon them the mantle of His authority. And despite human weakness, and especially when they act in unison, they are authorized by God to guide modern Israel through the wilderness.

All of us should try to see more clearly the power of God resting upon His authorized servants. And each of us should consider more carefully the advice of a Pharisee named Gamaliel who counseled against criticizing the apostles, "lest haply ye be found even to fight against God." (Acts 5:38-39.)

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Thursday, October 29, 2015

To keep the temple a holy place

"Jesus Cleanses the Temple" is the title of a video in the LDS Media Library at LDS.org (click here). The subtitle of this video states:

"Jesus clears worldly merchandise from the temple courts in order to keep the temple a holy place." (Emphasis added.)

James E. Talmage provides additional details, explaining that between the outer wall and the inner temple was a spacious courtyard, the Court of the Gentiles:

"It was in this court that money-changers and traffickers in animals used for sacrifice had established their stalls at the time of our Lord's ministry, and from which they were expelled through His righteous indignation." (The House of the Lord, 1968, p47; see also D. Kelly Ogden, "Jesus and the Temple," Ensign, April 1991.)


KEEPING THE TEMPLE HOLY TODAY

During the past thirteen months, my wife and I have spent a fair amount of time in the Ogden Utah Temple. On numerous occasions, on our way home, we have encountered crowds of people waiting for a newlywed couple to exit the temple doors. Twice, we have been startled by sudden cheering from the crowd when our own exit happened to coincide with the exit of the newlyweds. And once, such cheers from outside the building disturbed the quiet reverence of the work in the basement baptistry.

I'm not talking about the laughter of small children or the joy and exuberance of youth. I'm talking about grown-ups yelling and cheering just outside the temple doors.


THE PLACE WHEREON THOU STANDEST IS HOLY GROUND

God spoke with Moses out of a burning bush, as recorded in the book of Exodus. And God said: "Put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground." (Ex. 3:5.) According to President Gordon B. Hinckley, this instruction pertains to modern Israel as well:

"We do not ask our people to remove their shoes when they come into the chapel. But all who come into the Lord's house should have a feeling that they are walking and standing on holy ground and that it becomes them to deport themselves accordingly." (General Conference, April 1987.)

The Ogden Utah Temple and grounds were dedicated in 1972 by President Joseph Fielding Smith and rededicated in 2014 by President Thomas S. Monson. Therefore, one might say today:

"We do not ask visitors to remove their shoes when they set foot on the temple grounds. But all who enter there should have a feeling that they are walking and standing on holy ground and that it becomes them to deport themselves accordingly."


CONCLUSION

It is wrong to stand on the temple grounds and conduct a pep rally for newlyweds, yelling and cheering them on as they exit the temple.

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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Paradisiacal evolution

"We believe ... that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory." (Tenth Article of Faith.)


BRUCE R. MCCONKIE: "'We believe ... that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory.' (A of F 1:10.) That is to say, when the earth was first created it was in a paradisiacal state, an Edenic state, a state in which there was no death. And when the Lord comes again, and the Millennial era is ushered in, the earth will return to its paradisiacal state and be renewed. It will be made new again; it will become a new heaven and a new earth whereon dwelleth righteousness. In that day, 'there shall be no sorrow because there is no death' as we know it. (D&C 101:29.)" (Ensign, June 1982.)

Three years later, as he closed his ministry, McConkie testified once more that "all things [were] created in a paradisiacal state—without death." (Ensign, May 1985.)


RUSSELL M. NELSON: "The creation of a paradisiacal planet came from God. Mortality and death came into the world through the Fall of Adam.... Eventually, ' the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory.' At the Second Coming of the Lord, the earth will be changed once again. It will be returned to its paradisiacal state and be made new." (Ensign, May 2000.)


JOSEPH SMITH: Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith speaks of the day when earth will "resume" its paradisiacal glory. To "resume" means to begin again, or continue after interruption. Quoting the Tenth Article of Faith, the manual further says earth will be "renewed" to paradisiacal glory. To "renew" is to make new again, to restore. Joseph Smith originated the ideas quoted above (by McConkie and Nelson).


CONCLUSION: The word "paradisiacal" in the Tenth Article of Faith describes the millennial glory to which earth will be renewed, even the glory that was interrupted by the Fall of Adam. Paradisiacal glory is irreconcilable with evolution theory. There is no such thing as paradisiacal evolution.

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Monday, August 31, 2015

David H. Bailey haunted by Bruce R. McConkie

More than 30 years after his death, and nearly 60 years after he published his book, Mormon Doctrine, Bruce R. McConkie is still haunting David H. Bailey with these 16 words:

"There is no harmony between the truths of revealed religion and the theories of organic evolution."

Last year, David H. Bailey published a paper that purports to be a history of the Church's stand on evolution. Included is a short treatment of McConkie's Mormon Doctrine, including a quotation from Mormon Doctrine of the 16 words cited above. Then Bailey says this about McConkie's book:

"President McKay asked a committee consisting of Elders Mark E. Petersen and Marion G. Romney to review the book. Elder Petersen reported finding 1067 difficulties, which 'affected most of the 776 pages of the book,' while Elder Romney listed 40 areas of concern, including the treatment of 'evolution and evolutionists.' The consensus at the time was that Elder McConkie was not to publish a second edition, although subsequently a second edition appeared in 1966."[1]

Bailey's description of the relationship that existed between Church leaders and McConkie's book parallels the account found in the book, David O. McKay: The Rise of Modern Mormonism, by Gregory A. Prince and William Robert Wright. In fact, Bailey lists that book as a source for this part of his article. Unfortunately, Prince and Wright give us a dishonest picture of Bruce R. McConkie and his book.


Prince and Wright Malign Mcconkie

Background: For the last 35 years of David O. McKay's life, Clare Middlemiss was his personal secretary. After her death it came to light that over the years she had made unauthorized copies of 130,000 pages of a wide variety of things ranging from McKay's diary and personal letters to transcripts of First Presidency meetings. She stored the copies in her garage and bequeathed them to a nephew who, with the help of a friend, used them to write David O. McKay and the Rise of Modern Mormonism (Gregory A. Prince and William Robert Wright, University of Utah Press, 2005). The following explains how this book wrongfully discredits and defames Elder Bruce R. McConkie.


BRUCE R. MCCONKIE (1915-1985) was not yet a member of the Twelve when Mormon Doctrine was published. He was 43 years old. The book was published by Bookcraft (privately owned) instead of Deseret Book (Church owned), and the title itself was deemed by some to be inappropriately audacious. Today, after nearly six decades, the book is still a lightening rod for criticism of its author.

In 1999, when Bookcraft was acquired by Deseret Book, many people thought Mormon Doctrine would quietly disappear from the bookstores. Instead, Deseret Book began printing the book as one of its own titles.

In 2010, however, Deseret Book decided to drop Mormon Doctrine. That decision sparked open rejoicing in some quarters and lively discussions on quite a few LDS blogs. Several bloggers claimed the book should never have survived the 1950's because President McKay found over a thousand errors in it when it was first published.

This thousand errors rumor found new life in 2005 when Gregory A. Prince and William Robert Wright published David O. McKay and the Rise of Modern Mormonism and included a short section titled "The Controversy over Mormon Doctrine."[2] (You can read that section of the book here.)

Given the enormous frequency with which Mormon Doctrine has been quoted in official LDS media for nearly 60 years, it is surprising that anyone could believe the book contains a thousand errors. Yet, by simply omitting a few significant aspects of the Mormon Doctrine story, the rumor is made to appear believable.

Let's begin by looking at a few events that Prince and Wright did include.


1958: "Bruce R. McConkie, then a member of the First Council of the Seventy ... published an encyclopedic book with the presumptuous title of Mormon Doctrine."[3]

1959: David O. McKay asked Mark E. Petersen and Marion G. Romney to critique Mormon Doctrine for him.[4]

1960: Marion G. Romney's letter to David O. McKay was reviewed (but see the 1959 Romney omission, below) and Mark E. Petersen "gave McKay an oral report in which he recommended 1,067 corrections."[5] The First Presidency asked Elder McConkie to drop his future plans for Mormon Doctrine.[6]

1966: McConkie "moved with the same boldness of eight years earlier, and published a second edition of Mormon Doctrine."[7]

The short Mormon Doctrine story published by Prince and Wright definitely makes a point. But does it portray a fair and accurate picture of Bruce R. McConkie? I don't think it does. Here are some things Prince and Wright neglected to mention.

Petersen's career. Admittedly, the exact nature of each of Elder Petersen's 1,067 recommended corrections isn't known, but I think it helps to remember his professional career.

Prior to his call to the Twelve, Petersen was employed for many years by the Deseret News. He started as a copy reader, then worked as a news editor, later he was managing editor, and finally editor of the newspaper.[8] He was fully qualified by training and experience to look at Mormon Doctrine from a professional editor's point of view.

It seems unlikely to me that someone skilled at looking for spelling and grammar errors would suddenly adopt a different approach on McConkie's book and concentrate only on erroneous teachings. Why ignore Elder Petersen's professional background and speculate that his list included mostly doctrinal errors?

In all likelihood, his list covered the whole spectrum of editorial corrections. It is ludicrous to think that Petersen found 1,067 doctrinal errors in the book.

In 1958, Bookcraft was a fledgling publisher without a full-time editor. An editor would have found and dealt with most of Petersen's list prior to Mormon Doctrine's initial publication.[9]

The Inspired Version. It is also possible that some of the doctrinal errors Elder Petersen did find were, in the end, not actually doctrinal errors. For example, Elder McConkie and Elder Petersen are on record with differing viewpoints about the Inspired Version of the Bible. Elder McConkie thought it could "be used with safety"[10] while Elder Petersen thought it was "of questionable value."[11]

Why speculate that Elder Petersen didn't mark for correction any of Mormon Doctrine's references to the Inspired Version? In all likelihood, as many as 170 such references were on his list of recommended changes.[12]

Then in 1979, just twenty years later, more than 600 "doctrinally significant ... excerpts from the JST (previously known as the Inspired Version)" became part of the LDS edition of the Bible after "the First Presidency decided" to include them.[13]

Clearly, these Inspired Version changes may now be used with safety. For all practical purposes, they "are scripture and have the same truth and validity as if they were in the Pearl of Great Price itself."[14]

Romney's opinion. It is noteworthy that prior to being called as General Authorities, both Marion G. Romney and Bruce R. McConkie practiced law in Salt Lake City and both held the title, at different times, of assistant city attorney.[15] It makes sense that President McKay would invite an attorney to review another attorney's book for him.

On January 5, 1959, President McKay asked Elder Romney to review Mormon Doctrine. Twenty three days later, on January 28, 1959, Elder Romney wrote David O. McKay a lengthy letter detailing his findings. (The 1959 dates of January 5th and 28th are not mentioned by Prince and Wright, who imply that Romney didn't respond until January 7, 1960.)

Having been asked to look for problems, Elder Romney responded accordingly[16] and apparently, his letter was reviewed again the following year on January 7th as pointed out by Prince and Wright who were careful to quote some of his negative comments.[17]

But in addition to his criticisms of Mormon Doctrine, Elder Romney made positive comments about the book and we ought to consider them as well. They have been summarized as follows:

"In general, Elder Romney had a high regard for Mormon Doctrine and felt it filled an evident need remarkably well."[18]

Significantly, Romney did in fact quote from Mormon Doctrine in one of his own subsequent general conference talks.[19]

The second edition. According to Prince and Wright, David O. McKay told McConkie on July 5, 1966, that "should the book be re-published at this time" McConkie would be responsible for it. Then Prince and Wright give us this choice bit of reasoning.

"McConkie, who practiced law prior to becoming a General Authority, was well versed in the legal meaning of words; and so one is hard pressed to concluded that he misunderstood McKay's cautionary statement, 'should the book be re-published,' as a mandate to republish."[20]

According to Bruce R. McConkie's son, "On July 5, 1966, President McKay invited Elder McConkie into his office and gave approval for the book to be reprinted if appropriate changes were made and approved. Elder Spencer W. Kimball was assigned to be Elder McConkie's mentor in making those changes."[21]

I myself cannot believe that Bruce R. McConkie misunderstood Spencer W. Kimball's assignment in the preparation of a Mormon Doctrine second edition.[22]

"There were about fifty items that Elder Kimball wanted Elder McConkie to revisit... They dealt with tone and with the wisdom of including particular things.... Elder Kimball was a wise mentor who taught [Elder McConkie] the difference between being right and being appropriate.... Elder Kimball's list of things that needed changing [was] much less extensive than the changes that were made in the second edition....

"The report submitted to the First Presidency by Elder Spencer W. Kimball indicates that he checked changes made on fifty-six pages, all of which he approved. He did not indicate a single instance of doctrinal disagreement with what was written."[23]

Called to the Twelve. In 1972, when the First Presidency and the Twelve approved Bruce R. McConkie to be presented and sustained as the Church's newest Apostle, Marion G. Romney was a member of the First Presidency and Mark E. Petersen was a senior Apostle.

According to Prince and Wright, the reports prepared by Elders Romney and Peterson led to a First Presidency decision that Mormon Doctrine should not be reprinted. Yet in 1966 McConkie "moved with the same boldness of eight years earlier, and published a second edition" anyway, according to Prince and Wright.[24]

But notice that Romney and Petersen both approved McConkie's 1972 call to the apostleship. Clearly they had a much more complete understanding of Mormon Doctrine's history than is found in Prince and Wright.


Contrary to rumor. President David O. McKay did NOT find over a thousand errors in Mormon Doctrine. Copies published by Deseret Book carried this Publisher's Note:

"Mormon Doctrine has for decades been a classic work on certain beliefs and practices unique to the Latter-day Saints. A reflection of the times and culture in which it was written, this monumental work has added to the understanding of countless members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints."

McConkie was a doctrinal giant. Mormon Doctrine was a prodigious work. Yet by simply omitting key elements of the story, Prince and Wright created a false picture of "The Controversy over Mormon Doctrine."


Conclusion. Mormon Doctrine is a classic of Mormon literature. As the author's son, Joseph Fielding McConkie, has pointed out:

"Few books can match it in endurance or number of copies sold. Perhaps few books, except the scriptures, can match it in the frequency with which it has been quoted in talks and lessons by those seeking to teach gospel principles."[25]

And the influence of Bruce R. McConkie himself is greatly underestimated by those who ignore his reputation among those with whom he served as a Church leader. According to President Ezra Taft Benson, the First Presidency and Twelve frequently turned to Elder McConkie on matters of doctrine.[26]

His part in the preparation of the 1979 LDS Bible and 1981 edition of the triple combination was monumental. He was one of three (along with Thomas S. Monson and Boyd K. Packer) assigned by the First Presidency to oversee the project. He personally wrote all of the newly revised chapter and section headings and his imprint is on many entries in the LDS Bible Dictionary.

The scripture project, said Boyd K. Packer “was one great crowning achievement in Brother McConkie's ministry.... If ever there was a man who was raised up unto a very purpose, if ever a man was prepared against a certain day of need, it was Bruce R. McConkie." According to President Packer, the project "could not have been done without Elder Bruce R. McConkie."[27]

Boyd K. Packer served closely with Bruce R. McConkie during that project and believes "few will ever know the extent of the service he rendered. Few can appraise the lifetime of preparation for this quiet crowning contribution to the onrolling of the restored gospel in the dispensation of the fulness of times."[28]



Notes

1. David H. Bailey, "History of the LDS Church's view on the age of the earth and evolution" (Click here).

2. Gregory A. Prince and William Robert Wright, David O. McKay and the Rise of Modern Mormonism. SLC: University of Utah Press, 2005, pp.49-53.

3. Prince and Wright, p.49.

4. Prince and Wright, p.50.

5. Prince and Wright, p.50. One wonders how long it took to give an oral report of 1,067 corrections.

6. Prince and Wright, pp.51-52.

7. Prince and Wright, pp.52-53.

8. Thomas S. Monson, Ensign, Mar. 1984, p.9.

9. See Joseph Fielding McConkie, The Bruce R. McConkie Story: Reflections of a Son, SLC: Deseret Book, 2003, pp.186-187.

10. Elder McConkie stated in Mormon Doctrine:

"At the command of the Lord and while acting under the spirit of revelation, the Prophet corrected, revised, altered, added to, and deleted from the King James Version of the Bible to form what is now commonly referred to as the Inspired Version of the Bible....

"Such Biblical revisions as have been made may be used with safety, and parts of these are now published by the Church in its standard works [including] the Book of Moses [and] the revised 24th chapter of Matthew." (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 2nd edition, 1966, pp.383-385; the same wording is in the 1958 first edition.)

11. Elder Petersen stated in As Translated Correctly:

"It will be recalled that the Prophet Joseph Smith began what truly was an inspired translation of the Bible, but persecutions and his subsequent martyrdom made it impossible for him to finish the work. Certain parts which he did finish are now printed in the Pearl of Great Price as the Book of Moses and the 24th Chapter of Matthew.

"Not satisfied with these, however, the Reorganized Church decided to publish the 'inspired version' including what changes the Prophet had made. But, not happy with all of his changes, THEY ALTERED THE BIBLE TO SUIT THEIR OWN DESIRES, and actually changed some of the corrections made by the Prophet Joseph himself....

"Such changes of course make the work of questionable value, because the ordinary reader is at a loss to know what the Prophet corrected and what the Reorganized Church 'corrected' (?) to their own liking." (Mark E. Petersen, As Translated Correctly, SLC: Deseret Book, 1966, p.30; capitalized emphasis and "(?)" in the original.)

12. See Dennis B. Horne, Bruce R. McConkie: Highlights From His Life & Teachings, Roy, Utah: Eborn Books, 2000, pp.63-64.

13. Robert J. Matthews, "Why does the LDS edition of the Bible not contain all of the corrections and additions made by Joseph Smith?" Ensign, June 1992, p.29; see also David Rolph Seely, "The Joseph Smith Translation: 'Plain and Precious Things' Restored," Ensign, Aug. 1997, p.13

14. On March 10, 1985, a Churchwide satellite fireside on "Using the Scriptures" was held. Speakers included President Gordon B. Hinckley and the three Apostles (Thomas S. Monson, Boyd K. Packer, and Bruce R. McConkie) who served on the Scriptures Publication Committee during the preparation of the new LDS edition of the scriptures. During this fireside, Elder McConkie said:

"Other Inspired Version changes are found in the footnotes of our new edition of the Bible. Those too lengthy for inclusion in the footnotes are published in a seventeen-page section at the back of this Bible edition. All of these changes and additions are scripture and have the same truth and validity as if they were in the Pearl of Great Price itself." (Ensign, Dec. 1985, p.58.)

15. See Ensign, July 1988, p.74 (Romney) and New Era, June 1985, p.9 (McConkie).

16. Horne, p.63.

17. Prince and Wright, p.50. Prince and Wright date the letter Jan. 7, 1960, but I've seen multiple sources that date it Jan. 28, 1959 (i.e. Horne, p.63).

18. Horne, p.63.

19. See Ensign, May 1974, p.90.

20. Prince and Wright, pp.52.

21. Reflections, p.183.

22. Reflections, p.183.; see also Horne, pp.65-66.

23. Reflections, pp.187 and 191.

24. Prince and Wright, pp.51-53.

25. Reflections, p.182.

26. Ensign, June 1985, p.16.

27. Ibid.

28. Ibid.

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