Categories
Brigham Young Cornerstone

What Do Historians Think About Brigham Young?

Brigham Young is one of the most well-known figures in the history of the American West. The first man to become President of the Church after the death of Joseph Smith, Young left behind a legacy in which he was known both as a “Lion of the Lord” and “Brother Brigham”—two distinct aspects of his personality. This article breaks down some of the most important historical research about Brigham Young’s wives, church presidency, teachings, and more.

Categories
Come Follow Me Cornerstone Joseph Smith

Joseph Smith: As Seen by Historians

Joseph Smith has been a fascinating figure since the day of his “First Vision” in 1820. Scholars and believers continue to ask questions about the Prophet’s character, his use of golden plates to translate the Book of Mormon, his relationship with Brigham Young and Emma Smith—and much more. This article presents snapshots of academic and devotional insights about the life and teachings of Joseph Smith Jr.

Categories
Ancient history New Testament

Were the Pharisees Bad People?

The Pharisees are often portrayed as bad people that serve as foils for the New Testament Jesus. Indeed, the Gospels depict them in an especially bad light. But history suggests that common narratives may be flawed—and that religious stereotypes are unfair to contemporary Jews. In this interview, Jewish scholar Amy-Jill Levine discusses why many historians think that the Pharisees are misunderstood.

Categories
Book of Abraham Cornerstone Pearl of Great Price

Book of Abraham: What Have Scholars Learned?

The Book of Abraham is a volume of holy scripture translated by Joseph Smith. The text is unique because we possess some of the Egyptian papyri the Prophet may have used during his translation. However, the text on extant fragments doesn’t align with what’s found in the book—and that’s led to many debates. Ultimately, the Church says that the book’s power lies in study, prayer, and personal revelation. This article walks you through some of the latest research findings, including exclusive From the Desk interviews.

Categories
Bible

What Does It Mean to Be Anointed in the Bible?

Prophets, priests, and kings were anointed in the Old Testament. And the title Christ in the New Testament literally translates as “anointed one.” But what does that mean? This post draws from the comments of Tim Mackie and John Collins in a seven-part series by the Bible Project explaining that anointing is a ritual in which people and places are set apart as portals between heaven and earth. The story starts in the Garden of Eden and ends with contemporary Christian disciples.

Categories
Book of Mormon Come Follow Me Cornerstone

Come Follow Me 2024: Book of Mormon Resources

The Come Follow Me 2024 Sunday School lessons focus on the Book of Mormon. We’ve put together this library of study helps that cover everything from the gold plates and translation of the Book of Mormon to the theology taught by Jesus Christ in 3 Nephi. We’ve also got 2024’s Book of Mormon reading chart with links to the Church website.

Categories
21st Century Book excerpts Latter-day Saint History

How Was Henry B. Eyring Called to the First Presidency?

At the time, a few thoughtful observers saw Henry B. Eyring‘s assignment to speak at Mountain Meadows as a portent that he would be called to fill the vacancy in the First Presidency created in early August of that year by the death of President James E. Faust. Hal (President Eyring), though, was not among them. He had no such inkling, and certainly not a feeling strong enough to overcome the illogic of the idea.

Categories
Book of Mormon Theology

What Did Alma in the Book of Mormon Contribute to Theology?

The Book of Alma is one of the richest books in the Book of Mormon in both theology and narrative. Alma2 is a powerful preacher who has a remarkable conversion story and dramatic (albeit tragic) missionary journeys. Similarly, the sons of Mosiah, also have dramatic stories of missionary work. In this interview, Kylie Nielson Turley discusses the theology in Alma 1–29 found in the stories of figures like Alma, Amulek, and Abish.

Categories
Joseph Smith Latter-day Saint History

What’s in Joseph Smith’s Uncanonized Revelations?

In the historical memory of Latter-day Saints, Joseph Smith is the Prophet of the Restoration who pronounced hundreds of revelations and prophecies, most of them canonized today in the Doctrine and Covenants. However, what many Saints may be surprised to learn is that a number of Joseph Smith’s revelations have, for various reasons, remained uncanonized even after their pronouncement.

Categories
Ancient history Theology

Does Atonement Theory Matter to Latter-day Saints?

Latter-day Saints claim unique understanding of the Atonement of Jesus Christ thanks to the ongoing Restoration initiated through Joseph Smith. Yet we’re also influenced by Christian traditions that emphasize the very notions of equity and fairness repudiated by Jesus in the New Testament—which can lead to flawed perceptions of salvation. In this interview, Terryl Givens traces the history of atonement theology and explains why it matters to Latter-day Saints.