June 29, 2009 12 Comments
Years ago, I can’t remember when we started to do it exactly, but we began to collect Joseph Smith’s sermon reports. Of course, Andrew Ehat and Lyndon Cook had published reports of Nauvoo sermons in the groundbreaking (1980) Words of Joseph Smith -WJS. This was an effort that could be classified as part of the New Mormon History in a way, although it was not analytical per se. It was reprinted 10 years later. It is a work that does not resonate with average Mormons, partly because it brings to the forefront some of the uncertainty that exists regarding what Joseph said. Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith has been rather a standby since its 1938 publication and has basically remained fixed since then, except for Richard Galbraith’s Scriptural Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1993. I think that was a big seller for Deseret Book. Just reading the title, one might think that it merely extracted those teachings of JS which were “scriptural” somehow, or that it sought to supply scriptures implicitly referenced by JS in his speeches or “writings.” But it was neither of those. It was an attempt to match LDS scripture passages with TPJS passages as the author saw links. I do not know if it is still in the D-Book arsenal. Meanwhile, there were some privately published “parallelized” versions of some of JS sermons, some possibly extracted from Ehat and Cook, I don’t know.
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