Category Archives: Literary Views of Scripture

in verse #43 : hero’s journey

When Leonard Cohen said “Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash,”[i] he probably didn’t have Joseph Smith in mind. Joseph Smith burned brightly in a world lit only by … Continue reading

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In Tents #42 He is Risen and Other Texts That Don’t Behave as Textual Critics Think They Do Part III

Disharmony, Dat Harmony, Utter Harmony, or Harmony Pennsylvania? Cleaning out my parents’ home recently I cane across my father’s copy of Our Lord of the Gospels, the Melchizedek Priesthood manual for 1958, the year I expanded our family. That was … Continue reading

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In Tents #41 He is Risen, and Other Texts That Don’t Behave as Textual Critics Think They Do, part II

At the end of #40 I suggested that both Stephen Mitchell and Reza Aslan dismiss the Resurrection on the grounds that there’s no Resurrection appearance in Mark. In looking for the passage where Aslan dismisses the Resurrection I found that … Continue reading

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In Tents #39 Literal and Figurative Interpretation, or The Place is Called Gilgal Unto This Day

Here’s a paradox. I read scripture literally, and yet as I read letter by letter laterally through the word I keep seeing invitations to see the stories pointing toward something else. The writer of Exodus sees Moses as a new … Continue reading

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In Tents #38 The Physical First, Then the Spiritual

On Sunday, October 15, 1843, Joseph Smith preached “at the stand east of the Temple.” He began by talking about the Government’s (capital letter his) failure to uphold the civil rights of the saints, then turned to the failure of … Continue reading

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In Tents #37, Some Additional Views on Figures and Speech

I have had a few additional views in relation to this matter. (D&C 128:2) We have to drop everyone twice, but we try to drop them gently. If they survive they get to go home and we want as many … Continue reading

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Thankful for five

. ‘Tis the time of year we engage in exercises of our gratitudinal capacity. I though I would share five books that have shaped my conceptions of Mormon literature for the better. I encourage you to share your own beloved … Continue reading

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In Tents #35 And the Cruse of Oil Failed Not to Trouble the Waters

  Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.  (John 5.7) Last month I ended with a contrast between metaphors and puns, … Continue reading

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In Tents #33 More on Figurative Language and Interpretation (Who You Callin’ a Moron?)

September, the beginning of school, thirty-seven years since I signed on with the BYU moving crew to move the books into the new library. That was back when the new library was not the addition under the quad between the … Continue reading

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In Tents 32 Scripture Study Tools part IV: Figurative Interpretations

Greetings from Missoula, Montana. We traveled here today from my wife’s hometown not far from the Stanley, Idaho wildfire, and Monday morning we will be going over Lolo Pass, more wildfire country. In all the little towns on the way … Continue reading

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