Once Again: Joseph Smith, Richard Dawkins, and the Language of Translation

The King James Bible: the greatest monument of English literature or a work of charlatanry? [This is another follow-up post to these posts here, here and here. This blog post has been reposted at the Interpreter blog here.] At the risk of overkilling this topic, I want to return to Richard Dawkins’ arguments against the … Read more

Does the Bible Teach Creation Ex Nihilo?

Destruction of Leviathan (1865) by Gustave Doré Not according to Ziony Zevit. “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” On the basis of this well-known rendering, it can be argued that the ancient Israelites believed in creation ex nihilo, that is, creation out of nothing. This happens not to be the case. … Read more

Archaic Hebrew in the Old Testament (And What It Means for the Book of Mormon)

One of the Lachish ostraca (7th century BCE), written in paleo-Hebrew script. Some time ago I posted a blog entry at Interpreter on the atheist polemicist Richard Dawkins’ argument that the Book of Mormon is a fraud because Joseph Smith rendered his translation into Jacobean English. Dawkins’ argument is (and I’m not making this up) … Read more

Mormonism and Magic

Abra, Kadabra, Alakazam! My good friend Brandon Habermeyer has an interesting blog post on the relationship between Mormonism and magic. I actually agree with a lot of what Brandon has highlighted in his blog post. I am also pleased that this is a question that has been explored by numerous Mormon historians. I myself remember reading D. … Read more

Some Thoughts on Literary Borrowing

John H. Walton From the evangelical biblical scholar John H. Walton. When comparative study is carried out at this conceptual or cognitive level, some adjustments in methodology need to be made. When literary pieces are being compared to consider the question of dependency among them, the burden of proof has been on the researcher to … Read more