Monday, March 4, 2013


Last Friday, the LDS church announced a newly released digital edition of the LDS canon, which includes "adjustments" (as they call them).  Many have called the changes a bomb detonated to revise history, especially on troubling issues such as racism and polygamy.

The reason for the changes?  The first paragraph of official discussion on the "adjustments" says this:

"The current printing masters of the 1979 edition of the King James Version of the Bible and the 1981 edition of the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price have deteriorated because of age and long use. The quality of the typeface is no longer as clear and sharp as it should be. Therefore, in the process of preparing new printing masters, the Church has taken the opportunity to make adjustments."
(See )

Printing masters? In the digital age of desktop publishing they actually expect us to believe they had to do this because they were losing the printing masters?

The LDS church has all its scriptures, guides, footnotes, headings and more online, in digital format. When newspapers can daily transfer digital editions to printing masters for bulk volume, rapid prints, the church's reasoning that it was deteriorating printing masters looks like a ... lame excuse.

So why did the church take the "printing master" change-out opportunity to make "adjustments"? 

Late last year, I posted a blog called the Infallible FAIL! which highlighted how the Mormon church's position on why they engaged in racist doctrinal practices in the past is a huge chasm to their claim of divine revelation.  I will repeat a little of it again here.

One of the most significant 2013 edition changes is the heading to the Official Declaration 2, which states the following:

"Early in its history, Church leaders stopped conferring the priesthood on black males of African descent. Church records offer no clear insights into the origins of this practice."

But then, in the preceding Official Declaration 1 are these words:

"The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as president of this Church to lead you astray. "
It is also taught in official church manuals.

Preceding the O.D.2 heading change on racism, in 2012, the church released a press statement that read: "It is not known precisely why, how, or when this restriction began in the Church but what is clear is that it ended decades ago...We condemn racism, including any and all past racism by individuals both inside and outside the Church."

This statement and the one in O.D.2 on racism are very profound.  They, together with the statement in O.D.1, that the prophet not permitted to lead the church astray, tacitly admits that the previous statement, that the Lord won’t allow a prophet to lead the members astray, is false.  For nearly 150 years the prophets have led the people astray with racist policies and the current prophet administration does not know why this happened, they just know firmly, racism is wrong.  That repudiation of the former policy, of hundreds of statements made by Brigham Young, Wilford Woodruff, John Taylor, Bruce McConkie, and many more effectively opens the gate to an understanding that the current administrating prophets could be absolutely dead wrong on policies they have in place currently.

The other most interesting changes which many have already noted are those that change the headings. Removing the History of the Church references in the D&C reduces the influence of Joseph Smith's journal on the official history and allows them to keep sliding down history revisionism.

The other change is the Book of Abraham Introduction, from:

"A Translation of some ancient Records that have fallen into our hands from the catacombs of Egypt. The writings of Abraham while he was in Egypt, called the Book of Abraham, written by his own hand, upon papyrus."
“An inspired translation of the writings of Abraham. Joseph Smith began the translation in 1835 after obtaining some Egyptian papyri.”

They no longer admit, as Joseph Smith wrote in History of the Church, that it was written by the hand of Abraham. (History of the Church, 2:235–36, 348–51).  Rather, it is an "inspired" translation.  This is an obvious migration to one of the several solutions advanced by LDS apologists to overcome the deficit on the proven inability of Joseph Smith to actually translate Egyptian.  Instead of claiming that Smith literally translated off of the actual papyri, the church appears to be evolving the story to one where Smith was inspired by the papryi, which acted as catalyst for an inspired account of Abraham's tale.  It's actually a very clever, almost underhanded move. 

The church leaders know they cannot directly, humbly address the concerns of members and critics who find the official claim of origins of the Book of Abraham highly suspect.  They are now addressing them through a sliding of words that help re-define history, removing references to the source of these issues (the History of Church by Joseph Smith) and claiming that these changes are just minor necessary adjustments needed as the printing masters have aged.

In any case, the church is moving further from Joseph's claims about his "inspired translation" or revelation. I don't believe they will ever be able to completely remove Joseph Smith from the church, but this goes a long ways toward the beginning of marginalizing him.

My view is that LDS church leaders know that an onslaught of members have serious concerns, which cannot be addressed, mostly surrounding Joseph Smith. However, as is almost always seen in typical con-men modus operandi, they don't admit in humble honesty that Joseph Smith was an arrogant dictating opportunist, but rather try to carefully and slowly alter the equation without admission. They change without really admitting why they change. For as long as they can, they deny deny deny, but if forced, they change the problem without a lot of admission.

The LDS church treats history like a canal boat. 
They can raise the water or lower it at will, allowing
some claims passage and others to be dry-docked.


  1. Well stated. By subtly changing many documents, troubling points of view or expressions comfortably disappear into the memory hole. Good riddance. Now we are even more perfect than before. Perfect!

  2. This kind of stuff reminds of the book 1984.

  3. I can well appreciate what ‘Tohru’ is saying, but let’s think reasonably and be realistically rational. There are only a few options to choose from. One is, ‘if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, walks like a duck, etc, then it’s a duck.’ In other words, there is a plethora of very tenable data that would be well within in the bounds to conclude ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’ that the LDS church is not what is has always claimed -- that JS was a true prophet called by a the one and only divine, resurrected Jesus Christ (to mention this one claim). There is just too much very questionable historical data, (the non sanitized versions) to think otherwise; to think (as do the LDS apologists), “Well, it’s possible that it still actually may not be a duck as we understand what a duck is.”

    Another option is that the church was established by the one and only true God the Son, Jesus Christ, but has since gone into apostasy (as did the Nephite church recorded in the BofM). This would mean that the non-perfect leaders of the LDS church -- the ‘Brethren’, are leading the church the astray by not being up-front and truthful (to mention just 0ne reason for their disqualification as worthy priesthood holding ‘true’ living prophets, seers, and revelators). So sure, people are not perfect, even ‘true’ prophets of God, but when those ‘true’ prophets no longer are truthful time after time, I can no longer sustain them. End of story.

  4. The idea that the BoA was not a literal translation but an 'inspired' one is one i heard decades ago. That JS saw the egyptian papyrii and while looking at it got a revelation from god (the BoA). So it doesnt have to match any actual translation.

    The place where that goes belly-up is when JS 'translated' the pictures and put them in the book as real translations. The would knows the real translations of those pic's now and they aren't any where close to JS's explanation.

    How is the church explaining away that???

  5. (Printing masters? In the digital age of desktop publishing they actually expect us to believe they had to do this because they were losing the printing masters?)

    I would like to speak to your first unfounded put down. The printing offices that have been printing the LDS Scripture sets have been in business for a long time. It is only good money sense to keep using technology that works and is still cost efficative. Since the 30-year-old technology for printing the scriptures was working well, no change was needed. As stated, the 30-year-old printing masters have finally shown enough ware to need updating.

    You are a fool if you think new technology should replace working technology just because it is new.


    1. Fred: "You are a fool if you think new technology should replace working technology just because it is new"

      Strawman. I never said it should replace it just because it is new. I said their excuse that the printing masters is the catalyst for these present changes is a lame excuse because they already have everything in digital format (and have for years) so that there's no need to change anything just because the printing masters are old. They're old, ok, and so you just shift to printing from the digital copy. Fine. But the need to do editing adjustments is the priority. The church makes it sound as though it's all because of the printing masters wearing out. That's a lame excuse.

    2. 2 Timothy 3:16 "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:"

      The question is... Are the changes inspired? Will they instruct a man into righteousness? OR.... Are they just man's idea that leads us further astray?

      I have no problem with change, it's errors I have problems with. And not being open about making changes to scripture is a huge error on the church's part. Although at the same time, I can't imagine proclaiming on the pulpit every minor adjustment you've ever made to the church. Not that there's some things they should not make known, just that I know times are ever changing and it's sometimes hard to keep up.

  6. (The LDS church treats history like a canal boat.
    They can raise the water or lower it at will, allowing
    some claims passage and others to be dry-docked.)

    I see you have as poor knowledge of how a lock on a canal works as you have in your understanding of the LDS Church. A canal lock allows the user to raise or lower a canal boat so they can navigate the kinds of terrain that would stop a boats progression.

    Just look at the Panama Canal. It lifts ocean-going boats up and over the mountains that get in there way, somewhat like the teachings of the LDS Church lift peoples’ knowledge over the mountains of lies Satin keeps puking in front of us.


    1. Fred,
      Do you work in the printing dept? What is your source for this information?

  7. The thing I LIKE about the apostle Paul is that he threw the concept of having to be worthy to join God's church out the window. He did this by telling the Jews to let Gentiles join the church who were uncircumcised. Saying that although a man might have an uncircumcision of body, may he yet have a circumcision of heart. So that it's not a man's keeping of the law that makes him holy, but rather the heart's willingness to follow God. For all fall short of the glory of God, as all have different capabilities of doing things.

    I find this wise on Paul's part because circumcision is a much more grievous procedure for adults than babies. So that I see no reason as to why to put such a grievous burden on a man to be of God's covenant people. Not saying that Gentiles should not be circumcised, or that Gentiles should not circumcise their children, but that the messiah died on the cross for the ungodly.

    In retrospect, the LDS church should baptize smokers, alcoholics, etc. Not that people should do these sins, but that we should not bank someone's salvation based upon their ability to keep the commandments. For even David spoke of the blessedness of the man who is saved by grace without any good works, saying, "Blessed is the man whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sins are forgiven. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not hold responsible for sin."

    So yeah... I freaking love the apostle Paul man! I can't believe you don't.

  8. (Do you work in the printing dept?)
    I made college money in a print shop many years ago during a different technology up grade. You just don’t waste money on new technology if the old is still a sound business practice.

    Of course, now-a-days the “in thing” is to stand in line for days just so you can get the newest technology, even though your old technology is still working and it will become wasted money.