We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God. (AF 1:8)
This is the eighth of the thirteen Articles of Faith penned by Joseph Smith, Jr. as a way to explain the beliefs of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS). Joseph Smith wrote these thirteen statements of faith a few years before his death in a letter to a newspaper editor named Mr. Wentworth, who had inquired about the beliefs of the church. These Articles of Faith were later adopted as scripture in the book known as the Pearl of Great Price. Latter-day Saints still use these statements today to help clarify and share their faith.
Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints hold both the Bible and Book of Mormon as books of scripture. This means that they were written by inspired men who were directed by God to create these records. Through miraculous and wonderful means, these books of scripture are still available to us today to profit from. In fact, with the advent of advanced printing technology and online digital distribution, the word of God is more accessible now than any other time in history.
The eighth Article of Faith adds the caveat to the Bible “as far as it is translated correctly.” While it is miraculous that we have the Bible at all, there are many different versions of the Bible, because it has been translated so many times. Meanings and subtleties of language are often lost in a single translation of a book, and the Bible, in some cases, has gone through several translations from its original language into the language in which it is read today.
One of the great works of Joseph Smith, the first prophet of the LDS church, was to undertake a new translation of the Bible, guided by the Holy Spirit. He made many clarifying notes in both the Old and New Testaments and even restored entire passages that had been lost previously as the Bible was passed down from generation to generation. These clarifications are included in the footnotes of the Latter-day Saint edition of the Scriptures.
For example, the King James Version of the Bible usually reads that King Saul was troubled by an evil spirit that was of God. The Joseph Smith translation clarifies that this was an evil spirit that was not of God.
The Book of Mormon does not require the same caveat as the Bible, because it was translated only once by the gift and power of God. Joseph Smith used seer stones to translate the ancient language engraved on the golden plates, on which the Book of Mormon was written, into English. This resulted in a translation that was not of man, but of God, and as such, not prone to the faults that arose from the frequent translations of the Bible. We believe that the Bible and Book of Mormon strengthen each other and support the reality of the life and mission of Jesus Christ.
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“Bible and Book of Mormon” was written by Michael D. Young. The subject “Bible and Book of Mormon” is important to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. If you would like to know more about Mormons with no obligation, please click on the following links: