The Book of Mormon: Truly a Miracle
September 2017

“The Book of Mormon: Truly a Miracle,” Ensign, September 2017

Until We Meet Again

The Book of Mormon: Truly a Miracle

From “It Was a Miracle!Ensign, Nov. 1977, 11–13.

From cover to cover, the Book of Mormon is a revelation, an inspired translation, the work of God and not of any man.

golden plates

Background color from Getty Images

I … testify to the divine calling of the Prophet Joseph Smith and … declare my faith in the miracle by which the Book of Mormon was translated and published. …

On the 22nd day of September 1823, near Palmyra, New York, an angel of God revealed its resting place to [a seventeen]-year-old boy named Joseph Smith. …

… Let us consider for a moment the actual translation of this record. Joseph Smith says he did it by the gift and power of God. … As unlearned as he was at that time in his life, he could have done it in no other way. …

… How can critics [then] say that Joseph Smith, in his youth, was so scholarly that he could or would deliberately take passages from the Bible and skillfully make it appear that they were part of the Book of Mormon manuscript?

His mother said that at that early point in his life he had not yet even read through the Bible. Then how could he select carefully chosen passages and work them into the Book of Mormon so appropriately and skillfully?

Not having read through the Bible in his early years, he had no adequate knowledge with which to do such an editing job even if he had been adept at writing or editing, neither of which skills he possessed that early in life.

[Yet] the Book of Mormon is a literary and a religious masterpiece, and is far beyond even the fondest hopes or abilities of any farm boy. …

Read, for example, some of the Savior’s beautiful sermons in that book. Note that the Lord quotes Bible prophets. Are we to say that the unlearned Joseph Smith had the audacity or the skill to rewrite the Savior’s sermons and insert [Bible] passages in them, thinking to improve on what Jesus said?

… [Joseph Smith] … did not tamper with the work of Mormon, the sermons of Jesus, the marvelous defense of Abinadi, or the writings of Malachi or Isaiah. He was strictly a translator, not an editor or a composer; nor was he a thief plagiarizing someone else’s work. …

From cover to cover the Book of Mormon is a revelation, an inspired translation, the work of God and not of any man. From cover to cover it is true.