K.C. and Michelle Woolf

Family blog

Monday, November 2, 2009

Lehi in the Desert, The World of the Jaredites, and There were Jaredites

I read Hugh Nibley's 3 in 1 book Lehi in the Desert, The World of the Jaredites, There Were Jaredites last month. The first one, Lehi in the Desert, was the best. Nibley makes it clear that only someone who had intimate knowledge of the Arabian Peninsula (knowledge no westerner had until the early 20th century) could have written the part of the Book of Mormon that took place in the Old World. If Joseph Smith did write it, he hit bull's eyes with so many lucky guesses it is bind blowing. As Nibley says at the conclusion of this book: "Who wrote the Book of Mormon? It would have been quite as impossible for the most learned man alive in 1930 to have written the book as it was for Joseph Smith. And whoever would account for the Book of Mormon by any theory suggested so far -- save one -- must completely rule out the first forty pages." And in my experience, that is exactly what critics of the Book of Mormon do - ignore the first 40 pages.

The other two books, The World of the Jaredites and There were Jaredites were harder to get through, and seems to have been written more for academic in ancient history, religion and mythology. Although much of it went over my head, reading it made me realize that perhaps no one has studied the Book of Ether in more depth and with more insight than Hugh Nibley, certainly not the critics of the Book of Mormon. If Joseph Smith wrote the Book of Ether as an after thought, as Fawn Brodie suggests, he certainly did his homework to follow the Epic Milieu perfectly, something no one in the 19th century knew about.


Anonymous said...

Good blog, thanks for posting, makes me want to read more. I liked the youtube references above, the audio with Chris Baker was hilarious. Glad I stumbled on this.

-Sterling Kellis (My parents know your family from the Groves Ward)

Anonymous said...

Great books. I liked all three, although for different reasons. I thought you might be interested in reading Why Jaredites Fell.