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Joseph Smith’s American Bible: Radicalizing the Familiar

TitleJoseph Smith’s American Bible: Radicalizing the Familiar
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsGivens, Terryl L.
JournalJournal of the Book of Mormon and Other Restoration Scripture
KeywordsAtonement; Canon; Early Church History; Fall of Adam; Resurrection; Revelation

The Book of Mormon treats many topics that most nineteenth-century Christians would have been thoroughly familiar with: the fall, atonement, and resurrection, just to name a few. However, the Book of Mormon treats these subjects in a way that would have required such readers to rethink their relationship with the divine, their place in Christian history, and God’s relationship to history. Christ’s visit to the New World, the continuance of the scriptural canon, and abundant personalized revelation all create a text that is both familiar and radical.