Council, Chaos, and Creation in the Book of Abraham

Facsimile 2 from the Book of Abraham.

I am pleased to announce that my article “Council, Chaos, and Creation in the Book of Abraham,” published in the Journal of the Book of Mormon and Other Restoration Scripture, is now available online at the website of the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship.

I presented this paper at the 2013 Religious Education Student Symposium on BYU campus. Paul Hoskisson, who has just retied as editor of the journal, was in attendance at my presentation, and some time after my remarks I asked him if he’d be interested in publishing my piece. He expressed his interest in glancing at my manuscript, which he did. And, well, here we are now!
To give you an idea of what my article is about, here are Hoskisson’s editorial remarks about my piece.

Traditionally, though not uniformly, Christianity and Judaism have relegated all references to gods other than the One God to pagan idolatry. Stephen Smoot, using more recent scholarship on the scriptural anomalies that do seem to assume other divine beings, compares this vast body of material to the statements in the Book of Abraham accounts of the creation. Thereby, he places the Abrahamic creation story squarely within its ancient (read: theologically nontraditional) Near Eastern context.

I hope you enjoy reading the article as much as I enjoyed writing it!


Here is a video clip from the FairMormon DVD A Most Remarkable Book: Evidence for the Divine Authenticity of the Book of Abraham that directly touches on many of the points I raise in my article.