From BoAP Archives: Who is Iscah?

This originally appeared a few years ago at BCC. Since it’s Old Testament times in Sunday School, I thought this curiosity might be fun for you.

Abraham’s family life is the stuff of Jew, Gentile, and Mormon legend. But, I’m not going to break into that territory much. It’s too complex and I don’t have the mental space for it now. But, who is Iscah? The name appears once in the Hebrew Bible, just after the genealogy of Abram:
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Polygamy 101

I don’t really have anything new here, just pointing out my series of posts on D&C 132, starting here. Links to successor posts are in the headers. Have fun.

Charles W. Penrose and Adam-God

Joseph F. Smith noted the following in his journal p. 81, 1912.

“Our Father Adam by C. W. Penrose– Impt. Era, vol. 5– pages: 873 to 880-” Important for what it doesn’t say as well as what it does. Even more important is JFS’s notation.

The New God: John Robinson

Anglican Bishop John Arthur Thomas Robinson (1919-1983) shocked the world of Christianity in 1963 with his book, Honest to God. Its assertions were so radical, that I’m not sure if Mormonism even brushed by it in the theological waters of the twentieth century.
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God Knows Everything. —ish

We are behind in the ph/rs lesson sequence and today was our crack at the Lorenzo Snow manual, lesson 7. One man, a retired university professor, steered the discussion into evil and foreknowledge. The usual sorts of responses then showed up:
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King Follett and Stuff.

So I promised something on King Follett. Because of BCC persecution, I put it over there.

Richard Whately and Preaching/Teaching the Word in Mormonism

Richard Whately (1787-1863) was an academic churchman. First a Fellow at Oriel College, Oxford, then the Rector of Halesworth, then Principal of St Albans Hall, then Drummond Lecturer on Political Economy at Oxford and last but not least Anglican Archbishop of Dublin. Read more of this post

Stemmata for the Funeral Sermons of Joseph Smith

Here’s an example for one of the funeral sermons.

Preaching event at the top. Arrows represent text dependence.

This particular sermon was published in full a comparatively large number of times. The more times in print the more complicated the variorum. In this particular case, one excerpt has appeared (just in recent years) over a hundred times in Church conferences and literature. That is rather unusual and somewhat odd, given the earth shaking stuff you *could* come up with. The stemma reveals the most influential editor: MS2. It is not always easy to identify the real editor of published Church documents and in the typesetting era often more than one set of hands dealt with a given text like this one. Complete texts of Joseph Smith’s sermons tend to be published by the Church at large during in a cycle very similar to this one. Aside from reprinting certain standard imprints like Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, and a few independently published versions of the sermons, new “official” imprints stopped after 1952.
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The Return of the B. H. Roberts Cabal

The 19th century produced some prominent thinkers in Mormonism. But the 20th century also had its share. One particular group (I use the term in a loose sense) was what I choose to call the “B. H. Roberts Cabal.” Roberts himself was not entirely self taught, but he trolled the waters of intellectualism in his day and in some respects sought to show Mormonism consistent with or even ahead of the science and philosophy of the times.
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D&C 107. Part 13. Succession and Discipline.

One of the interesting issues raised by the history of Doctrine and Covenants section 107 is the question of a transgressing President of the Church. The November 11 revelation (second half of D&C 107) introduced a church court system (see parts 2 and 3 in the series). The two leading offices in the early church were the bishop and the president of the high priesthood. The revelation defined a way for each officer to be disciplined, should the need arise. This was to work by using each of the court systems attached to these officers to judge the other.
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Where is Zion? Rises Again!

Coming back for another round:

Blair Hodges’ recent interview with Richard Bushman brought to mind some old ponderings that I have resurrected for the book on Joseph’s sermons. The tandem evolution of concepts of Zion, consecration, temple, millennium and gathering find a discursive foundation in Joseph’s sermons.
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More Yet. D&C 107. Part 11. Ordination Practices.

[Part 10 is here.]
For the first 90 years or so of LDS church organization, priesthood ordination gradually developed into more or less the following pattern:

By authority of the Holy Priesthood and by the laying on of hands, I ordain you an elder in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and confer upon you all the rights, powers keys and authority pertaining to this office and calling in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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Summertime and Recycling #8: D&C 107. Part 6. Interregnum.

Here’s what’s happening so far: D&C 107 is a compilation of revelations. There are two major parts in the compilation, one from November 1831 and another from April 1835. In D&C 107 these are arranged in reverse chronological order. So, we’ve spent some time looking at the last part of D&C 107 (which came first!). Later we will look at the April 1835 segment which is of a rather different character than the 1831 segment. As these two revelations were combined in the 1835 D&C, still other revelations and regulations were interleaved in these texts to form what we now know as D&C 107. But for now we consider what happened in between these two major components. You really should read the previous parts to understand (and believe) what I’m going to say here.

Between the ca 1831 texts of the November 11 revelation and the 1835 Doctrine and Covenants text (section 3 of that first edition, 107 of the present edition) there were several developments. One was the important revelation of September 22, 23, 1832. (LDS D&C 84) In this revelation we see the beginnings of a taxonomy of priesthood, more nuanced than previous classifications but not yet mature.
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Correlation FAIL -part the second

So we get to have conference talk hash in adult priesthood/relief society meetings once a month. We get the opportunity to hear from different members of the group on these Sundays, by design I think, so that new folks get a chance to be heard, and mostly this is positive. But Zig Ziglar’s doppelganger left his side and came to visit us a few weeks back.
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Does Doctrine follow Practice?

I suppose the title is a bit misleading. What I really want to know is how circumstance plays into Church doctrinal interpretation and emphasis. I think it’s a two-way street. I’m really interested in what I see (and I know this may be uncomfortable in some quarters) as overlaid forces in Mormonism during the 1845-60 period that seem, at least in my view, to make a fundamental difference in how Church leaders saw religious cosmology/cosmogony. Previously planted seeds grew in robust new ways. In particular, something like this:
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