The Pearl of Great Price

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Discussion[edit]

  • Contents. One way to understand the collection of scriptural writings in The Pearl of Great Price is to think about Joseph Smith's complete scriptural output in terms of three major translation projects plus two sets of historical records.
  • Joseph's first major translation project was the Book of Mormon. Joseph was first called to translate the Book of Mormon in September 1823, but the translation was not completed until June 1829, and it did not become available to the public until March 1830, about ten days before the Church was organized.
  • Joseph's second major translation project was the Joseph Smith Translation of the Old Testament and the New Testament. This project began in June 1830 and was essentially completed three years later in July 1833. The book of Moses is the Joseph Smith Translation of Genesis 1-6. The book of Joseph Smith-Matthew is the Joseph Smith Translation of Matthew 24. While most of the Joseph Smith Translation is available in the LDS Edition of the King James Bible, only these two portions have been formally canonized as official scripture.
  • Joseph's third major translation project was the book of Abraham. Joseph began working on the Abraham translation in 1835 but did not complete and publish it until 1843.
  • The first set of historical records relevant to this discussion is the two "revelation books" into which Joseph's scribes copied the revelations that he received, roughly corresponding to the Doctrine & Covenants.
  • The second set of historical records relevant to this discussion is the manuscript history compiled by Joseph's scribes. The accounts of the First Vision, Moroni's initial visit, and the restoration of the Aaronic Priesthood contained in Joseph Smith-History are all taken from that manuscript history.
  • Organization and canonization.

Resources[edit]