Book of Mormon
The Book of Mormon is a book I recommend to everyone living in the United States. Mormon (member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), or not, it is a must-read book for what is going on in our nation right now.
I have Christian friends who won’t read it because they have a prejudice regarding Latter-day Saints’ view of the book and their view of the Bible. If they would only set aside that prejudice and read the book in terms of hearing what it says about this nation, government, and its warning against secret combinations, I think they would enjoy it. Just for once, set aside Revelations 22:19 (because you already don’t believe the Book of Mormon to be scripture), and listen to the story.
Don’t give up once you start reading it. Remember, you’re reading it for the story line to find out what it has to say about the country we live in. And, start with the introduction and cover page. They will set the scene. (This is important because it is actually several books that have been abridged by a man named Mormon, and finished by his son Moroni. If you don’t realize this as you read, it kind of throws you for a loop when Mormon starts to speak. His comments should be parenthetical, but parenthesis weren’t used, and that can throw you for a loop if you don’t realize this. I know it did me the first time I read it.)
It’s written in King’s English, and that’s a bit tough for some people, but yea means yes, and nay means no. Thee and thou means you, thine means yours, thy means your, and if you can handle that, you can handle the “est” at the end of words (like thinkest).
Pay particular attention to what it says about kings, taxes, elections and corruption. Look for an underlying theme throughout the book. (Oh, and it pays to know some biblical history such as the Exodus and the Babylonian captivity.) Listen for promises.
While there is an underlying theme, there are also stories within stories. There is also an insert, the Book of Ether, that is another entire story of another group of people. Interestingly, their story is like a condensed version of the entire story. I like to think of the Book of Ether as a short, “I told you so,” story.
There’s nothing in the book that’s going to corrupt you. In fact, just the opposite. You’ll see things like King Benjamin teaching his people that when you serve and help others in need you are in the service of your God. That’s just one example of the good teachings contained in the book.
You can order a free copy here: https://www.mormon.org/free-book-of-mormon You can also ask a friend who is a Latter-day Saint for a copy. (You can even purchase one here, but seriously, we’ll gladly give you a copy if you ask. And, there is a free app called Gospel Library that contains the Book of Mormon.)
After completing the New Testament, Elizabethe and I decided to add the U.S. Constitution to our scripture reading. A few General Conferences back, Elder Oaks encouraged members of the church to study the Constitution so we will recognize the rights granted in the Constitution. Today was the day we started our reading.
It is amazing how quickly we read through the scriptures by reading every morning and night. We only read two pages each time (4 per day). As a result, we’ve read the scriptures dozens of times over. And, while there was a time in my life I could remember a lot of what I would read (I used to have chapters and verses memorized verbatim), as I grow older I appreciate re-reading the scriptures because my memory is waning.
The sisters came over for dinner tonight. I made black beans (feijoada) and cornbread. Elizabethe finally likes cornbread! The secret is to partially cook the cornmeal before making the batter. It makes for a moister cornbread.