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Is Trinity in Lectures on Faith/Book of Mormon? (Part 2 of 7)

There are many people who claim that the Book of Mormon and Lectures on Faith contain trinitarian ideas.  Denver Snuffer, on the other hand, says that the Book of Mormon contains Nauvoo-style theology, rather than the trinity.  How does he come to that conclusion?

GT:  Also, I’ve read Lectures on Faith, and one of my understandings is Lectures on Faith is very Trinitarian. I feel like that’s kind of why the LDS Church put that away. So, I’m curious, because you’ve re-canonized that.  To me, the Lectures on Faith sounds very Trinitarian and the Book of Mormon, as we have it, does sound very Trinitarian. So it’s interesting, to me, to hear you say, “Well, if you take out the punctuation…I guess it would support more of a Nauvoo-style theology. Is that what you’re saying?

Denver:  Oh, yes. Yes, I think so.

GT:  So, how would you respond to that?

Denver:  Well, let me see if I can find the language. The Lecture that talks about who God is. See, one of my problems is that I just got this on the 25th, and this is the 28th. I haven’t gotten to Lectures on Faith to look at it just yet. There’s a definition given of who God is, in Lectures on Faith, and it says that there is God the Father who is a personage of spirit, power, glory, and then there’s God the Son. And he’s a personage, and then there’s the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost is the mind of the Father and the Son. That is very Nauvoo-era doctrinally correct.

Have you read Lectures on Faith?  Do you think it trinitarian?  Do you think re-punctuating the Book of Mormon would make it less trinitarian?  Check out our conversation….

The Remnant Movement has re-canonized Lectures on Faith. Denver Snuffer says the Book of Mormon is not trinitarian.

Don’t miss our previous conversation with Denver!

437: New Scriptures in Remnant Movement

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Documentary Hypotheses & Adam-God (Part 4 of 8)

The Adam-God doctrine identifies Elohim and Jehovah as separate beings.  However, the Documentary Hypothesis states that these two names were used interchangeably for the same god in the Old Testament.  I asked 2 members of Christ’s Church how they dealt with that issue with regards to the Documentary Hypothesis.  Apostle David Patrick and Seventy Benjamin Shaffer share how they deal with this issue.

GT:  As I understand the Documentary Hypothesis, the idea is the first five books of Moses were written by four different authors.

Benjamin: Right.

GT:  The J author refers to God as Yahweh; E [author refers to] Elohim because this is the point that I want to make here. I might be getting this backwards. In the Northern Kingdom, they referred to God as Elohim and then in the Southern Kingdom they referred to God as Jehovah.[1] And then the editors according to the Documentary Hypothesis combined them all. Really Jehovah and Elohim are really two names for the same for the one and only God. And if you go to the Hebrew, they basically alternate behind between Jehovah and Elohim as the same person. And so Mormons are heretical, because we say that Jehovah and Elohim are two different people but historically, especially in the in the five books of Moses (I hope I’m getting this right) the Southern Kingdom referred to Jehovah, the Northern Kingdom referred to Elohim but they’re really the same person. So how would you respond to that issue?

Benjamin: Textual criticism is a big rabbit hole to go down, a big gospel tangent.

GT:  Sure.

Benjamin:  And it is complicated, but I do have a couple things that I could say to that. First of all, we do believe in this unity of godliness. Jehovah is in Elohim as in El, right? These are different titles as David [Patrick] is explaining. Right? You can use those titles. Sometimes you can use those titles somewhat interchangeably. This is actually another evidence for the Adam-God Doctrine. If Michael is a title of God with God right in the name right there then you could call any of them by any of those titles without being incorrect.[2]

[1] I got it backwards.  Southern Kingdom called God “Elohim” while Northern Kingdom called God “Jehovah” according to Documentary Hypothesis.

[2] It should be noted that El means “god” in Hebrew.  Therefore the name Michael could be written as Micha-El, which includes El (God) as part of Michael’s name.

Benjamin talks further about how the Documentary Hypothesis might support the idea that Laban was helping put together the Torah under King Josiah.  What do you think of his explanation?  We’ll also talk about how Christ’s Church deals with evangelicals who like to ambush Mormons at places like the Manti Pageant over the Adam-God doctrine.  Check out our conversation….

Mormons believe Elohim & Jehovah are 2 different beings, while the Documentary Hypothesis says Elohim & Jehovah are 2 names for the same god.
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Fixing Known Biblical Errors (Part 4 of 5)

Joseph Smith wrote Article of Faith 8: “We Believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly.”  But has anyone ever identified these errors?  BYU professor Dr. Thomas Wayment has identified known biblical errors, such as this one!

Thom:  1st John 5:7, that verse is forged in our Bible. When you go to Sunday School and you read 1st John 5:7, there is no scholar on the planet, I believe that would say that verse is original. We know when it’s forged. We know why it’s forged and so that’s comes out.

GT:   See, I’ve done a lot of Mark Hofmann stuff. So, this is fascinating to me. So tell me about that. What does the verse say and why do you say it is forged?

Thom:  It’s a trinitarian verse, and what I mean by that is it says that there is God the Father, the son, and the Holy Ghost, and these three are one. And so, the verse is forged, and I should have looked up the exact date on this.* But, we know exactly the century when this happens. There’s no manuscript prior to that. And when it happens, we believe it’s probably written in the margin at first, like “This is what this means,” or something and somebody migrates that into the text. So, in our King James [Bible], it’s a fascinating story how we have it. The person who put together the Greek text for our King James Bible went to his local ecclesiastical leaders and said, “This verse isn’t in my manuscripts.” And they produce a manuscript for him that has it, that’s a forgery itself. And say, “You better put this in.” We are confident this is a forged verse.

This is going to be a very cool conversation. We’ll talk about biblical errors known by scholars, and which versions of the Bible are the best.  This is a conversation you won’t want to miss!  Check out our conversation….

Dr. Thomas Wayment of BYU has a modern translation of the New Testament that updates and fixes known errors.
Dr. Thomas Wayment of BYU has a modern translation of the New Testament that updates and fixes known errors.

Check out our other conversations with Dr. Thomas Wayment!

232: Juvenile Jesus a Jerk? Apocryphal Stories Say Yes (Wayment)

230: Christmas Legends: Herod, Wise Men, the Star (Wayment)

228: Separating Fact and Fiction on Birth of Christ (Wayment)

 

*Later in conversation he says it was in the 14th century.