Topics on the Book of Abraham, JST, and D&C
In this section we want to give a wide-ranging discussion about issues with the Book of Abraham, Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible, and the Doctrine and Covenants. We want to highlight the issues for each and why they put into question the authenticity of Joseph Smith's status as a prophet of God. This section will go into many different areas of these scriptures in order to get a fuller picture of both the problems as well as the apologetic responses to them.
Book of Abraham Write-Ups:
Book of Abraham Overview, Part 1: Translation and Source Materials - A look at the translation of the Book of Abraham along with the source materials that we have from the translation process, and what that tells us about Joseph Smith's ability as a prophet, and the authenticity of the Book of Abraham as an ancient text.
Book of Abraham Overview, Part 2: The Book of Abraham Text - We build on our part one overview, and look at what the text of the Book of Abraham itself tells us about the authenticity of the Book of Abraham as an ancient text, and what the material tells us about both who wrote the Book of Abraham and when it was written.
Official LDS Essay "Translation and Historicity of the Book of Abraham" with Discussion Notes - The official church essay on the Book of Abraham with annotated notes, looking at how the church's claims regarding the Book of Abraham stand up to the evidence, scholarship, and history of Joseph Smith and his composition of the Book of Abraham.
The Book of Abraham in 1,000 Words - A very quick, high level look at the Book of Abraham and the problems that come from Joseph Smith's translation of the papyri fragments. It literally covers the problems and apologetics for the Book of Abraham and the Mormon church in 1,000 words and is a good beginning step for anyone who has not read much about the Book of Abraham before.
We did a chapter by chapter fact-check and review of the church's "Saints" volume 1 book, looking at where the church was being honest, where they were being dishonest, and where they left out important context to their historical claims. This was a fun project to help learn a lot about early church history, and there is a chapter summary so you can read the chapters of most interest.
Joseph Smith's Other Translation/Revelation Projects:
A Look at Joseph Smith's Translations - We take a high level look at some of Joseph Smith's most significant translations, and see what the evidence tells us about their authenticity including the Book of Mormon "caractors," the pure Adamic language, the Kinderhook Plates, the Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible, and the writings of John.
Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible - BYU Study on the Plagiarism of Adam Clarke's Work - A summary and preview of the study done at BYU by Haley Wilson, detailing the many times that Joseph Smith used Adam Clarke's Bible Commentary when translating the Bible. This has been a groundbreaking study that helps to further understand how Joseph Smith created scripture, and reframes what revelation and translation are in the church's history.
Overview of the Kinderhook Plates - A history of the Kinderhook Plates, looking at the story of the Kinderhook Plates creation, what Joseph Smith translated, and how the church defended the Kinderhook Plates as authentic until science proved them to be a hoax in the 1980s.
Changes to the Doctrine and Covenants - An overview of the changes that Joseph Smith to revelations from God in the Doctrine and Covenants, including some crucial changes that were made between the initial dictation of the revelations and the compilation of them in the 1835 Doctrine and Covenants, including the priesthood restoration, Joseph Smith's gift as a translator, and more.
The Church's "Now You Know" Video on the Word of Wisdom - A review of the church's official "Now You Know" video about the Word of Wisdom, looking at the history behind the Word of Wisdom's initial revelation along with what science and nutrition tell us today about the accuracy of the revelation, along with the source that Joseph Smith was pulling from when creating it.
Masonry and the Temple (Now You Know Video) - A review of the church's official "Now You Know" video about the church's temple ceremony and its connection to the Masonic ceremony that Joseph Smith learned just before creating the endowment ceremony.
I Cannot Read a Sealed Book - A look at the Charles Anthon visit by Martin Harris, and how Joseph Smith retroactively turned the story into a fulfillment of revelation with a misreading of Isaiah.