I want to say to you, read the book, the Pearl of Great Price, and read the Book of Abraham. The Pearl of Great Price I hold to be one of the most intelligent, one of the most religious books that the world has ever had; but more than that, to me the Pearl of Great Price is true in its name. It contains an ideal of life that is higher and grander and more glorious than I think is found in the pages of any other book unless it be the Holy Bible. It behooves us to read these things, understand them: and I thank God when they are attacked, because it brings to me, after a study and thought, back to the fact that what God has given He has given, and He has nothing to retract." - Levi Edgar Young, Conference Report (April 1913), 74

"...it must be evident to all who seriously consider the matter, that if the Book of Abraham as given to us by Joseph Smith be true, it must have been translated by a greater than human power." - George Reynolds, The Book of Abraham: Its Authenticity Established as a Divine and Ancient Record (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1879), 4

Friday, August 12, 2016

Notes: Abraham and Cultural Adaptation and Appropriation

The usage of Biblical figures and traditions in the context of "pagan mythology" was, according to Wacholder, "typical Hellenistic fashion":
"according to Pseudo-Eupolemus, however, Belus, Kronos, Atlas and the Babylonian and Greek pantheons are none other than pagan names for the ancestors of Abraham. In typical Hellenistic fashion Pseudo-Eupolemus utilized exegesis to fuse biblical traditions with pagan mythological accounts."
Ben Zion Wacholder, "Pseudo-Eupolemus' Two Greek Fragments on the Life of Abraham," Hebrew Union College Annual 34 (1963), 91; Wacholder adds in footnote 59: "For the contamination of biblical traditions with pagan mythology, see Artapanus, 726 FF 1-3; Cleodomus-Malchus, 727 F 1; Theodotus, 732 F 1, p. 692, line 15; Or. Sibyll., III, 97 ff."

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