Faith Crisis and Reconstruction Podcast Series, Episode 8: Book of Abraham and JST

In this episode, I discuss apologetic aspects of the Book of Abraham (BoA) and Joseph Smith Translation. The LDS Gospel Topics Essay on the Book of Abraham provides background on the papyrus that Joseph Smith used to translate the Book of Abraham. It does not date back to Abraham’s time nor does it include any information on it related to Abraham or the Book of Abraham text. The LDS Gospel Topics Essay suggests two possibilities to resolve this issue: the lost scroll theory and the catalyst theory. We discuss these theories as well as insights into the Joseph Smith Translation project. My personal belief is that the Book of Abraham is not ancient but should be seen as modern, revealed, inspired scripture uncorrelated to Abraham or ancient happenings.


  • Michael Chandler’s traveling mummies
  • Kirtland Egyptian Papers (KEP) project
  • Brian Hauglid and Robin Jensen: LDS scholars overseeing Joseph Smith Papers project over BoA
  • KEP Papyri as Egyptian funerary text
  • KEP Facsimiles — the BoA images in LDS scripture
  • BoA potential source material
  • Missing Scroll Theory
  • Catalyst Theory
  • Midrash
  • Kinderhook Plates
  • FairMormon take on Joseph Smith Translation
  • Thomas Wayment research on Adam Clarke in JST
  • Terryl Givens on Book of Moses
  • Universalism in the JST and D&C
  • My take on logical inconsistencies in the restoration — Why would God do that?


Images used in the podcast Episode

Image 1: papyri with Egyptian text and facsimile

Image 2: close up of Egyptian text with KEP lookup table

Image 3: typed out KEP text

Image 4: papyri facsimile portion with missing elements

Image 5: Book of Abraham scripture facsimile with missing elements filled in by artist

Image 6: Book of Abraham scripture facsimile with missing elements filled in by artist

Image 7: Kinderhook plate with boat symbol on top


Image 8: close up of boat symbol on Kinderhook plate

Image 9: Kinderhook plate with KEP entry of boat looking hieroglyph

Image 10: close up of KEP text showing text correlating to William Clayton account