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“Comment,” Ensign, Jan. 1981, 67


The age of Enoch

The Old Testament chronology chart in the September 1980 Ensign shows Enoch being 430 years old when he was translated with the city. However, after reading Genesis 5:21–24 [Gen. 5:21–24], I find that Enoch was 365 years old when “God took him.” Can you explain this?

Cecil A. Poole, Jr.
Warren, Pennsylvania

The new LDS version of the King James Bible is extremely valuable in that it is cross-referenced to the other standard works. In this instance, Genesis 5:23 [Gen. 5:23] is referenced to Moses 7:68 and Moses 8:1 in the Pearl of Great Price, which clarifies: “And all the days of Zion, in the days of Enoch, were three hundred and sixty-five years. … All the days of Enoch were four hundred and thirty years.”

Asenath an Egyptian?

In his article entitled “Joseph, Model of Excellence” (Sept. 1980, p. 9), the author writes that Joseph’s wife, Asenath, “was not only Egyptian, but a daughter of an Egyptian priest,” thus conveying the idea that her two sons, Ephraim and Manessah, were of “half-Egyptian” blood. If that were so, then both of them would have been of a lineage which at that time “could not have the rights of Priesthood” (Abr. 1:27).

Actually, the Pharaoh of Joseph’s time was not Egyptian by blood, but was of the Hyksos, a nomadic people who swept into Egypt from the Arabian peninsula. The Hyksos were a Semitic people, which made them distant relatives of Joseph and his family. Asenath was a descendant of these Semitic Hyksos, not an Egyptian.

Albert S. Paskett
Grantsville, Utah

The language used does permit confusion. Yes, Asenath was of the Semitic Hyksos people who were ruling Egypt in the days of Joseph. However, because they had conquered Egypt and were living there for a number of generations, it is also appropriate to identify them as Egyptians, just as it is possible to identify U.S. citizens of Danish or German or English extraction as Americans. The author was discussing national homeland boundaries, not racial origin or lineage.

A warning about appliances

I felt that I should write a response to an item in the August 1980 Random Sampler column (p. 58).

I can certainly understand the desire to get an early start on tomorrow’s chores by washing and drying a load of clothes at bedtime. However, never should an appliance like a washer, dryer, or dishwasher be left on while everyone is asleep or away from home.

A tragic situation happened in my previous ward where a clothes dryer was left going while the family slept. It malfunctioned and started a terrible fire in which the family died and the home was destroyed.

Renita Clark
Orem, Utah

Singularly happy

It was with great joy that I read “‘I Love My Work’: Enjoying This Stage of My Life” (July 1980, p. 66). The very things the author wrote about—marriage in the future, frustration, joy, growing—are the things I’ve thought about and prayed about since being released from my mission a year and a half ago. Some time ago I decided that being single was not going to prevent me from being happy and progressing in the gospel. Far from being despondent because of my “singularity,” I am happy, and I too love my work. How I wish others could feel the same way.

Phyllis Rogers
Hastings, Nebraska

Re ERA insert

I congratulate the Ensign on the outstanding insert in the March issue, The Church and the Proposed Equal Rights Amendment: A Moral Issue. I work in the Illinois State government where the ERA is a hotly debated question, and such a pamphlet provides a valuable reference to Latter-day Saints who must deal with inquiries regarding the Church’s stand.

It should be pointed out, however, that reference to the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 (page 7) should actually read “Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1973.” This was subsequently amended through the CETA Amendments of 1978.

Wesley E. Carson
Springfield, Illinois

Tips on Tape Recorders

Thanks for the informative article “Too Busy to Keep a Journal?” (July 1980). From thirty years experience in storing tapes, may I suggest a few safeguards in using tape recorders for historical purposes? Recording tape was not designed to last, but it can be made to last if we understand its limitations:

1. After completing a tape, be sure to pop out the plastic tabs on the back or spine of the tape. This will prevent accidental erasure. If you want to record after popping out the tab, simply put a piece of scotch tape over the hole.

2. Be sure to place your tape hack in its plastic box. This will reduce exposure to dust and also ensure that the plastic gears are locked, preventing the tape from unwinding.

3. Never put your tape close to anything with an electric motor, such as a turntable, another tape deck, etc. Motor noise will put sound distortion on your tape. Tapes should also be kept away from amplifiers and other electronic equipment, except when actually recording.

4. There is a tape “illness” called offsetting or print-through, which comes from inactive tapes. The way to correct this is to make sure that you run all your tapes either fast forward or rewind at least once a year.

5. Tape has a tendency to dry out, especially in the dry southwest desert country. Therefore, be sure to remove tape from direct sunlight and intense heat. Store tape boxes on lower shelves. If you want your tapes to last from one generation to another, so that your grandchildren can hear your actual voice, build an airtight storage box for the tapes to prevent oxidation.

6. If a cassette tape jams in the machine or breaks, don’t throw it away. All cassettes can be repaired.

Job Matusow
St. David, Arizona

Isolated reader

I’m a regular reader of the Ensign and find it a very informative and helpful magazine. I have been in prison for eight years. During all of this time an elder who visited me when I was first incarcerated has sent me the Ensign. Even though l’ve only seen him twice briefly since 1972, I’d like to thank him for the magazine.

I know that God lives and that through his son Jesus Christ we may, if we live righteously and obey his commandments, return to his presence.

R. E. Hearne
Portland, Dorset, England