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Lesson 77 - The Book of Mormon Published

TitleLesson 77 - The Book of Mormon Published
Publication TypeManual Lesson
Year of Publication1898
Corporate AuthorsDeseret Sunday School Union
Manual TitleDeseret Sunday School Union Leaflets
PublisherGeorge Q. Cannon & Sons Company
Place PublishedSalt Lake City
KeywordsCowdery, Oliver; Early Church History; Harris, Martin; Scripture Study; Smith, Emma Hale; Smith, Joseph, Jr.; Translation; Whitmer, David

The Prophet Joseph was busily engaged in the translation of the Book of Mormon records during the years 1828 and 1829. In this work he was assisted by his wife, Emma Smith, Oliver Cowdery, and Martin Harris, who at various times acted in the capacity of scribe. The Prophet was given some trouble by Martin Harris, who received reluctant permission to take a portion of the manuscript and show it to his relatives. It fell into the hands of the enemies of the work, necessitating the translation of a corresponding portion of the “smaller plates," as a substitute for the lost manuscript. As a result of Martin’s carelessness, the instruments of translation were taken away from the the Prophet for a time.

The work of translation was interrupted occasionally by Joseph’s financial condition, which rendered it necessary for him to labor for the support of himself and wife. These financial difficulties were partially overcome by the generosity of Mr. Joseph Knight Sen., of Colesville, Broome County, New York, who, out of pure kindness of heart and regard for the Prophet, furnished provisions on a number of occasions. David Whitmer also rendered some assistance, inviting Joseph and Oliver to go to his father’s house at Fayette, where they remained until the translation of the Book of Mormon was completed. Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris received a partial reward for their faithful labors, by being permitted to act as the three chosen witnesses to the divinity of the work.

While the translation was in progress, many persons visited the Prophet and his companions, propounding many questions, some for the purpose of learning the truth, but many with the intention of injuring these faithful men. But the power of God was made manifest in the wisdom with which these questions were answered, and the work went on apace. At length the translation was completed, and arrangements were made for the publication. Mr. Egbert Grandin, a printer of Palmyra, Wayne County, New York, issued five thousand copies of the Book of Mormon in the early spring of 1830, charging three thousand dollars for the work. In order to retain the control of all future publications of the book, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery secured the copyright. And thus one of the most precious records ever issued was published to the world. It has since been translated into fully twelve foreign languages.

Scripture Reference

1 Nephi 13:35-37