[Updated] Event Reminder: Program for the Mormon Scholars Foundation Summer Seminar Symposium, July 8, 2010

By July 7, 2010

The Mormon Scholars Foundation Summer Seminar, hosted by the Neal A. Maxwell Institute, under the direction of Richard Bushman and taught by Terryl Givens, will present the quasi-annual MSF Symposium.

Date:  Thursday, July 8.

Location: Auditorium of the McKay Building, BYU Campus [Building number 59 on this map]

Time: 9:30-12:00 and 2:00-4:30

Symposium Theme: The Foundations of Mormon Theology

Ten seminar students from around the country will present the results of their research into the formative years of LDS theology. Presented topics will range from Eliza Snow?s theological poetry to racial amalgamation in early LDS thought to Joseph Smith?s appropriation of Johannine language. A ten minute Q&A will follow each 20 minute presentation. The public and BYU community are cordially invited.


9:30            Welcome     Richard Bushman

Invocation TBA

9:45            ?Wallowing in the Mud and Snorting Like Beasts: The Problem of the Body in Early Mormon Spiritual Experience?

-Amanda Hendrix-Komoto

10:15          ?Saints and Saviors: Vicarious Obedience in Early Mormon Thought?

? Dallin Lewis

10:45                    ?Interpretations of Adam in Early Mormonism?

? Jacob Rennaker (read by Blair Hodges)

11:15          ?The Kingdom of God, The Family of God?

? Justin White

11:45          ?Ascending the Scale of the Universe: The Fall and Redemption of the Earth in Mormon Theology?

? Daniel Ortner

12:15                                       BREAK FOR LUNCH

2:00            ?A Savior Unto Israel: Bloodlines and Assurance in Early Mormon Salvation Theory?

– David Golding

2:30            ?Eliza R. Snow?s Elegies and Mormon Theology?

Elizabeth Pinborough

3:00            ?Inter-racial Marriage in Early Mormon Thought?

? Jared T.amez

3:30            ?My Principality on Earth Began: Millennialism and the Celestial Kingdom?

? Blair Hodges

4:00            ?Joseph Smith and the Johannine Jesus?

? Nick Frederick

Article filed under Miscellaneous


  1. Wish I could be there. If paper titles aren’t available yet, is there any way to find out what topic each presenter is speaking on?

    Comment by Ben — June 29, 2010 @ 11:01 am

  2. Good luck to those participating. I’m just going to miss this, as I leave Utah on the 5th.

    Comment by Christopher — June 29, 2010 @ 11:11 am

  3. Ben, good call. I’ll get that up this morning.

    Thanks, Chris!

    Comment by Jared T — June 29, 2010 @ 11:19 am

  4. Thanks for posting this so I could link it at MormonConferences.org.

    Comment by Kent (MC) — June 29, 2010 @ 11:26 am

  5. Thanks, Kent. I aim to please 🙂 Actually, thanks to Terryl for getting me the info.

    Comment by Jared T — June 29, 2010 @ 11:31 am

  6. I will be presenting at 11:30 on the fall of nature and the plan of salvation for/ of the world as well as the role of Zion in reclaiming the earth. I am quite excited.

    Comment by Daniel Ortner — June 29, 2010 @ 12:07 pm

  7. Ok, I put up approximate paper topics in brackets by the names.

    Comment by Jared T — June 29, 2010 @ 12:14 pm

  8. What does “quasi-annual” mean?

    Comment by SC Taysom — June 29, 2010 @ 1:09 pm

  9. Thanks for the notice. I hope to hit some of the presentations.

    Comment by Chris H. — June 29, 2010 @ 1:31 pm

  10. Congrats to a group of fine young scholars. I am sadly out of town that day. Best wishes.

    Comment by smb — June 29, 2010 @ 2:13 pm

  11. Steve, ha, I’m not sure!

    Comment by Jared T. — June 29, 2010 @ 2:51 pm

  12. Looks like another amazing group! Congrats to the presenters!

    Comment by TT — June 29, 2010 @ 3:22 pm

  13. Looks like a fun day! I’ll be there trolling for Dialogue papers, of course 🙂

    Comment by Kristine — June 29, 2010 @ 3:39 pm

  14. Kristine

    I look forward to your trolling :).

    Comment by Daniel Ortner — June 30, 2010 @ 3:14 pm

  15. Thanks, Jared. I’ll at least be there for the afternoon. Maybe all of it.

    Comment by WVS — June 30, 2010 @ 10:51 pm

  16. Great, WVS. I don’t know if I’ve met you yet, so please come say hello. At least I don’t think I’ve met you…I’ll be embarrassed and apologize if I have and just don’t remember.

    Comment by Jared T. — July 1, 2010 @ 12:22 am

  17. I’ll try to go. Is there a website up yet?

    Comment by Mark Ashurst-McGee — July 6, 2010 @ 12:07 pm

  18. WVS, make sure to introduce yourself to me as well if you get the chance.

    Comment by BHodges — July 7, 2010 @ 9:56 pm

  19. WVS

    I’d love to meet you as well 🙂

    Comment by Daniel Ortner — July 8, 2010 @ 12:36 am

  20. What a line-up!

    Comment by Ben — July 8, 2010 @ 2:54 am

  21. I attended the presentations by Amanda, Dallin, and Jacob (read by Blair).

    All very good. I really like how Amanda discussed the role of “the body” within early Mormon theology. Jacob’s paper raised some interest things about Adam and how we view Adam as both a figurative and historical figure. It dealt with a lot of stuff I have been thinking about.

    I want Blair to read one of my papers for me sometime in the future.

    Comment by Chris H. — July 8, 2010 @ 1:11 pm

  22. David Golding’s talk, very interesting, showing JS as broadening restorationism from NT restoration (Campbell-Scott) to a restoration of all OT+NT. Patriarchal blessings, one lynch-pin idea. Nice work.

    Comment by WVS — July 8, 2010 @ 3:26 pm

  23. Elizabeth shows that ERS gives some insight into post mortal/pre resurrection activities. She mentions two funeral sermons of JS (Yes). A nice analysis of ERS elegies as they bear on what you’re going to be doing later. Death conquest – Sam Brown gets some play. Nicely done.

    Comment by WVS — July 8, 2010 @ 3:50 pm

  24. I am not able to return for the afternoon. Hating my life right now.

    Comment by Chris H. — July 8, 2010 @ 4:23 pm

  25. Jared’s paper. Ok, a flow of interesting statements. Dark skin and intermarriage among Nephites-Lamanites. Dark skin signified curse. Prevents intermarriage. But reversible. BOM favors whiteness of skin as sign of righteousness. BY has view that intermarriage of white men with Indian women would bring Lamanites to whiteness. Jared reads a portion of Elijah Abel’s patriarchal blessing. Blood of Israel in Abel more powerful than blood of Cain/Ham/etc. Position reversed in BY early years. BY: Marriage between blacks and whites did not function like marriage between whites and Indians (Lamanites).

    Jared’s paper generated discussion of course. But I neglected to mention the comments on Elizabeth’s paper. Elizabeth made the statement that JS’s death was the most important in Mormonism (correct me if I’m wrong). Someone asked: what about the death of Christ. Interesting back and forth on that.

    Comment by WVS — July 8, 2010 @ 4:34 pm

  26. Wvs

    Your description of the back and forth sounds about right and was quite interesting. I think the questioner took elizabeth’s wording a bit out of context as she was speaking about the most important death in Mormon history/ culture and not necessarily theology.

    Everyone has done a great job so far. Some of the quotes jard used makes my blood boil however. So disturbing and upsetting.

    Comment by Daniel Ortner — July 8, 2010 @ 4:48 pm

  27. Blair’s paper moves through heavenly history among Mormons. Blair makes the point that the Millennial condition was at least partially identified with the Celestial kingdom. Blair has some really interesting stuff about procreation among Millennial mortals vs. resurrected beings. Mormon’s believe in a Carnal Paradise! Fun stuff. Parley’s Millennial views. Mormon’s accused of Heaven/Millennial earth having flocks, herds, riches, real estate. Bushman asked about procreation in heaven. That opens it up! Blair finally admitted that Eric was not his cup of tea. No spirit birth for him.(grin)

    Comment by WVS — July 8, 2010 @ 4:56 pm

  28. Nick Frederick. D&C has much Johannine language. Used by JS to expand doctrine. JS revelations refer to John 1. E. g., D&C 76, 84, 88, 93, 132, etc. Christianity new to Jews. Mormonism a new creation as well in modern Christianity? John’s recounting of Jesus using “I am” many times. Formula suggests Jesus = Jehovah.

    Revelations use same patterns. Tension between transcendence and immanence in John (John’s projection of resurrected Jesus onto mortal Jesus) exists in Mormonism’s revelations; the Divine Jesus standing next to JS dictating revelations. Lots of other speech parallels to JS revelations. More theological than historical.

    Why use Johannine language? JS believed his career colored by John. JS the revelator the legate of John the revelator.

    Comment by WVS — July 8, 2010 @ 5:16 pm

  29. WVS,

    Thanks for the updates.

    Comment by Chris H. — July 8, 2010 @ 5:38 pm

  30. Re: Daniel (26). It seemed like the questioner was disputing that characterization as well. But I think Elizabeth’s point is valid in the narrow way I believe it was intended. It just seemed to have struck an emotional chord. To be honest, I didn’t even pick up on it. Shows you how unreliable witnesses can be.

    Comment by WVS — July 8, 2010 @ 5:52 pm

  31. If anyone else was listening, when David Golding was talking about salvation assurance, did he talk about the 1831 high priest restoration and associated “sealing up to eternal life” episodes? I meant to ask him, but the question time ran out and I couldn’t find him afterward. Seems like that was kind of a hole in his argument, but maybe he addressed it.

    Comment by WVS — July 8, 2010 @ 7:48 pm

  32. Someone asked: what about the death of Christ.

    Seriously? Give me a break.

    Comment by SC Taysom — July 8, 2010 @ 8:51 pm

  33. Re: WVS (31):
    For want of time, I decided to focus on the ritualization of assurance as a unique development in soteriology, and as a way to see the various soteriological threads come together to inform early Mormon understandings of bloodlines as assurance of salvation. The role of the high priesthood and its development in 1831 had connections to the restoration of OT themes which I talked about, though briefly. Here, too, they understood the high priesthood in terms of covenant and lineage, still thinking of salvation within a confluence of OT and NT soteriologies. It would have been good to touch on those specifics, and to chat about it afterward; my apologies for running over on my presentation time and cutting into the Q&A.

    Comment by Dave G. — July 14, 2010 @ 9:13 pm

  34. WVS, you said:

    But I think Elizabeth?s point is valid in the narrow way I believe it was intended. It just seemed to have struck an emotional chord. To be honest, I didn?t even pick up on it. Shows you how unreliable witnesses can be.

    Ditto on all counts. The comment went right past me, I suppose because I took it in stride, that she wasn’t speaking theologically as Daniel pointed out.

    Comment by BHodges — July 19, 2010 @ 6:03 pm


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