On Doctrine and Covenants Language and the 1833 Plot of Zion

Abstract: Contrary to the generally accepted view, it seems likely that much of the wording of the Doctrine and Covenants was transmitted to Joseph Smith as part of the revelatory process. Apparent bad grammar and a limited reading of “after the manner of their language” (D&C 1:24) have led to the received view that “the language of the revelations was Joseph Smith’s.”1 This judgment, however, is probably inaccurate. Abundant cases of archaic forms and structures, sometimes overlapping with Book of Mormon usage, argue for a different interpretation of “after the manner of their language.” Scholars have chosen, for the most part, to disregard the implications of a large amount of complex, archaic, well-formed language found in both scriptural texts. As for the 1833 Plot of Zion, transmitted words in Doctrine and Covenants revelations, a key statement by Frederick G. Williams, and a small but significant amount of internal archaic usage mean that the layout, dimensions, and even some language of the city plat were specifically revealed as well. Continue reading

Scripture Roundtable 198: Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson 9, “The Only True and Living Church”

This is Scripture Roundtable 198 from The Interpreter Foundation, in which we discuss the Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson #9, “The Only True and Living Church”, discussing selections from D&C 20, 21, 27, and 115, bringing in various insights to help us better understand the scriptures. These roundtables will generally follow the 2017 Gospel Doctrine schedule of scriptures, a few weeks ahead of time.

Panelists for this roundtable are Bruce Webster, Martin Tanner, and Shon Hopkin.

This roundtable is also available as an audio podcast, and will be included in the podcast feed. You can listen by pressing the play button or download the podcast below:

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Scripture Roundtable 197: Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson 8, The Restoration of the Priesthood

This is Scripture Roundtable 197 from The Interpreter Foundation, in which we discuss the Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson #8, The Restoration of the Priesthood, discussing selections from D&C 13, 20, 27, 84, 107, 110, and Joseph Smith-History, bringing in various insights to help us better understand the scriptures. These roundtables will generally follow the 2016 Gospel Doctrine schedule of scriptures, a few weeks ahead of time.

Panelists for this roundtable are Martin Tanner, Bruce Webster, and Kristine Frederickson.

This roundtable is also available as an audio podcast, and will be included in the podcast feed. You can listen by pressing the play button or download the podcast below:

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Scripture Roundtable 196: Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson 7, “The First Principles and Ordinances of the Gospel”

This is Scripture Roundtable 196 from The Interpreter Foundation, in which we discuss the Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson #7, “The First Principles and Ordinances of the Gospel,” bringing in various insights to help us better understand the scriptures. These roundtables will generally follow the 2016 Gospel Doctrine schedule of scriptures, a few weeks ahead of time.

Panelists for this roundtable are Martin Tanner, Kristine Frederickson, Daniel Peterson, and Craig Foster.

This roundtable is also available as an audio podcast, and will be included in the podcast feed. You can listen by pressing the play button or download the podcast below:

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Scripture Roundtable 195: Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson 6, “I Will Tell You in Your Mind and in Your Heart, by the Holy Ghost”

This is Scripture Roundtable 195 from The Interpreter Foundation, in which we discuss the Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Lesson #6, “I Will Tell You in Your Mind and in Your Heart, by the Holy Ghost,” discussing D&C 6, 8, 9, and 11, bringing in various insights to help us better understand the scriptures. These roundtables will generally follow the 2016 Gospel Doctrine schedule of scriptures, a few weeks ahead of time.

Panelists for this roundtable are Martin Tanner, Craig Foster, Kristine Frederickson, and Daniel Peterson.

This roundtable is also available as an audio podcast, and will be included in the podcast feed. You can listen by pressing the play button or download the podcast below:

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