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The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

The best

This book is life changing

posted by Anonymous on June 22, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

America's Greatest Work of Religious Fiction

Joseph Smith's "The Book of Mormon" is without question America's greatest work of religious fiction. Written between 1828 and 1830, Joseph Smith took a then popular belief (that the Mound Builders of the eastern and midwestern US had been displaced Israelites)and const...
Joseph Smith's "The Book of Mormon" is without question America's greatest work of religious fiction. Written between 1828 and 1830, Joseph Smith took a then popular belief (that the Mound Builders of the eastern and midwestern US had been displaced Israelites)and constructed an ancient thousand year 'history' of the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. Through this 'hsitory' he debated the most controversial theological issues of the Second Great Awakening (the evangelical Christian movement of the 1810s and 1820's.) These issues included the Divinty of Christ (Smith accepted the doctrine of the Trinity when he wrote the book; by the end of his career he rejected not only the Trinity but monotheism itself), Original Sin, infant baptism, the relationship of republican government to the established churches and even Freemasonry (which in the book he referred to as "Secret Combinations"), anti-semiticism (he rejected it), Biblical infallibility (he rejected this also) and, most importantly, the role of Native Americans in teh future of the United States.
The book was privately published in Palmyra, New York in the Spring of 1830, but sales were so poor that Martin Harris (who paid for the publishing) completely lost his investment. Nevertheless, the few copies that were circulated deeply impacted religous seekers of the day.
In late 1830 an entire community of Christian Primitivists in Kirtland, Ohio, under the leadership of Christian restorationist minister Sydney Rigdon, accepted the book as scripture. Joseph Smith and his scribe, Oliver Cowdrey, movwed the dozen or so families who belonged to their local congegation, The Chruch of Christ, to Kirtland, Ohio.
Joining forces with Sydney Rigdon, Joseph Smith established a seminary (called the School of the Prophets), began studying theology and developing new doctrines that would alter Mormonism, turning it into a new American religion--as different from Christianity as Christianity is different from Judaism.
THIS EDITION of "The Book of Mormon" is the verison published by the Utah LDS Church (the largest, but NOT the only Mormon denomination.) The modern subtitled "Another Testament of Christ" was created by the Utah LDS Church in 1983 in that church's attempt to transform itself into a more mainstream Christian denomination. THIS EDITION also contains over a century of rewrites and word changes, many of which change the meaning of the text as originally published. The most drastic changes involve changing references to race and skin color by substituting the words "pure" for the word "white."
"The Book of Mormon" was not reprinted until the 1840's, and was NOT used as the basis of Mormonism's more profound and innovative doctrines. In fact, until the early 1980's when the subtitle "Another Testament of Christ" was added by the LDS Church, Joseph Smith's LATER writings were the ones that LDS Church members studied the most.
Rather than reading this edition, I would recommend that you read the ediiton recommended below--which is a reprint of the 1840 ediiton.
ALSO check out the recent-award winning bioraphy of Joseph Smith by Dan Vogel (recommended below) entitled "Joseph Smith: The Making of a Prophet." This book goes through "The Book of Mormon" exploring what Joseph Smith was dealing with in his personal life, day by day and week by week, as he wrote each chapter.

posted by dec0558 on March 25, 2009

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  • Posted March 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    America's Greatest Work of Religious Fiction

    Joseph Smith's "The Book of Mormon" is without question America's greatest work of religious fiction. Written between 1828 and 1830, Joseph Smith took a then popular belief (that the Mound Builders of the eastern and midwestern US had been displaced Israelites)and constructed an ancient thousand year 'history' of the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. Through this 'hsitory' he debated the most controversial theological issues of the Second Great Awakening (the evangelical Christian movement of the 1810s and 1820's.) These issues included the Divinty of Christ (Smith accepted the doctrine of the Trinity when he wrote the book; by the end of his career he rejected not only the Trinity but monotheism itself), Original Sin, infant baptism, the relationship of republican government to the established churches and even Freemasonry (which in the book he referred to as "Secret Combinations"), anti-semiticism (he rejected it), Biblical infallibility (he rejected this also) and, most importantly, the role of Native Americans in teh future of the United States.
    The book was privately published in Palmyra, New York in the Spring of 1830, but sales were so poor that Martin Harris (who paid for the publishing) completely lost his investment. Nevertheless, the few copies that were circulated deeply impacted religous seekers of the day.
    In late 1830 an entire community of Christian Primitivists in Kirtland, Ohio, under the leadership of Christian restorationist minister Sydney Rigdon, accepted the book as scripture. Joseph Smith and his scribe, Oliver Cowdrey, movwed the dozen or so families who belonged to their local congegation, The Chruch of Christ, to Kirtland, Ohio.
    Joining forces with Sydney Rigdon, Joseph Smith established a seminary (called the School of the Prophets), began studying theology and developing new doctrines that would alter Mormonism, turning it into a new American religion--as different from Christianity as Christianity is different from Judaism.
    THIS EDITION of "The Book of Mormon" is the verison published by the Utah LDS Church (the largest, but NOT the only Mormon denomination.) The modern subtitled "Another Testament of Christ" was created by the Utah LDS Church in 1983 in that church's attempt to transform itself into a more mainstream Christian denomination. THIS EDITION also contains over a century of rewrites and word changes, many of which change the meaning of the text as originally published. The most drastic changes involve changing references to race and skin color by substituting the words "pure" for the word "white."
    "The Book of Mormon" was not reprinted until the 1840's, and was NOT used as the basis of Mormonism's more profound and innovative doctrines. In fact, until the early 1980's when the subtitle "Another Testament of Christ" was added by the LDS Church, Joseph Smith's LATER writings were the ones that LDS Church members studied the most.
    Rather than reading this edition, I would recommend that you read the ediiton recommended below--which is a reprint of the 1840 ediiton.
    ALSO check out the recent-award winning bioraphy of Joseph Smith by Dan Vogel (recommended below) entitled "Joseph Smith: The Making of a Prophet." This book goes through "The Book of Mormon" exploring what Joseph Smith was dealing with in his personal life, day by day and week by week, as he wrote each chapter.

    5 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2013

    Broadway

    The play was okay

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  • Posted March 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    America's greatest work of religious fiction

    "The Book of Mormon" is America's greatest work of religious fiction. It's influence on the course of US history is unparralled. HOWEVER, read it in it's original 1830 format--not in this heavily re-edited and in many cases rewritten version from the Utah LDS Church.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2004

    Another witness of Jesus Christ

    Just as the New Testament provides a witness of Christ in the Old World, the Book of Mormon provides a witness of Christ visiting the New World shortly after His ressurrection. The Book of Mormon chronicles the history of a group of Israelites who travelled to America in about 600 BC and grew to large populations and whose descendants became the American Indians. The book in fact was written with their descendents in mind and was often directed towards them. The scientific evidence that disputes this story - including genetic, archaeological, anthropological, linguistic - should not be considered dissuasive: there's evidence that in addition to Siberian ancestry native Americans derive from other sources as well and that various migrations (such as the ones described in the Book of Mormon) likely occured. Woven within the historical chronology is a text rich in philosophy about the meaning of life ('Man is that he might have joy', 'The natural man is an enemy to God', 'It is better that one man should perish than that a nation should dwindle and perish in unbelief' - the latter in regards to the killing of a man named Laban whose brass plates contained ancient scripture that would be needed by the Book of Mormon peoples), quotes from the Bible that emphasize Christian doctrine, and interesting details about the use of horses, steel, chariots, ancient monetary systems, and more. The Book of Mormon also provides profound spiritual insights into various Christian doctrines, such as baptism, pointing out that very young children should not be baptised, that baptism should be performed by immersion, and describes baptism by immersion in America both before and after the birth of Christ. Some of the text in the Book of Mormon can be rather wordy (lots of 'it came to pass' phrases, etc.) and cumbersome, but that apparently results from the translation process from 'reformed Egyptian', as Joseph Smith described the language that these ancient Americans used, to English. There have also been concerns by some about possible racist overtones of the Book with respect to dark skinned people being less righteous than light-skinned people, and people's skin becoming lighter when they became more righteous and vice-versa, but it should be clear that the implications are not racist but a kind Heavenly Father attempting to help distinguish between two warring groups during that long-ago time period.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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