The Documentary Hypothesis

In struggling with some of the “higher criticism” assessments of scripture, I’ve had to attempt the same ruthless look at the Bible that I applied to the Book of Mormon when I left Mormonism. The “documentary hypothesis” asserts that Moses did not write the Pentateuch but rather someone(s) patched together different versions of the creation story and other elements of the history depicted there. Evidence of this, such higher critics would say, is the way that God is named in different sections, and other elements that tie such sections to various individual writers. I’m no Hebrew scholar. But I am a writer. And if I were going to collate an historical document, I’d try to be true to each temporal and geographical...

Review of Sister Wife by John Gates

Sister Wife by John GatesWalker and Company (July 2001)Reviewed by Harriet Klausner, Midwest Book Reviews All is well in Brigham Bybee’s world. He proudly owns a private motel shaped like a teepee in Kanab, Utah. He is seriously involved with Zolene Swapp. He is also the outside prosecutor brought in to handle the Hampton Crowe bigamy case because Brigham is not a Mormon. The case is airtight as one of Pampton’s wives is sequestered while waiting to testify against her husband. However, the case begins to unravel when another wife appears at Brigham’s motel, badly battered. Crowe caught her sleeping with someone else. He and his men castrated and killed the male and beat up the female. Brig realizes the case has taken a deadly twist and he hides...

Review of Brigham’s Day by John Gates

Brigham’s Day by John GatesWalker and Company, June 2000 Review by Harriet KlausnerMidwest Book ReviewsAttorney Brigham Bybee once walked with the state’s elite. In those days, he would never set foot in a place like Kanab, Utah. However, that was then and this is now and Brigham is divorced and an alcoholic with no future. Thus, Brigham agrees to assist the defense team as they defend drifter Owen Parks accused of killing a former local bishop Douglas Farnsworth. Though no one expects much of him in what is apparently an airtight case (the accused took a picture of the scene) Brigham begins to investigate the murder. To his shock, he begins to unravel a totally different scenario than that painted by the police and prosecutor. Instead, Brigham begins...

Reason #4 — freedom in Christ

“As far as what I regard as personal loss, I believe it was very light for me. I haven’t felt much personal loss. I have felt tremendous personal freedom especially from a hierarchal structure…All in all the cost of leaving Mormonism has not been much compared with the compensation of knowing Christ and the freedom He allows. There’s not much that I feel I left.” –Dave Wilkins, 5th generation descendant of Wilford Woodruff, 4th president of the LDS Church. As quoted in Why We Left Mormonism: Eight People Tell Their Stories (Baker Book House, 1993.) For more information, see The Mormon Mirage 3rd Edition:  A Former Member Looks at the Mormon Church Today (Zondervan, 2009). Also available as an audiobook and as an expanded-text...

Reason #3 –Prophets without Discernment

Philippians 1:9 identifies a trait of a Christian as one having “true knowledge and discernment.” LDS prophets have historically been unable to discern the truth when given falsified “old” documents. The first example of this was Joseph Smith’s boastful attempts to translate the Kinderhook Plates, which were specifically crafted to see if he would know they were forgeries. A second example — and there are so many more — is that of an entire LDS leadership who actually paid blackmail money to keep documents forged by Mark Hoffman out of the public eye. Read all about these issues here: http://utlm.org/onlinebooks/trackingcontents.htm For more information, see The Mormon Mirage 3rd Edition:  A Former Member Looks at the...