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  1. Excellent discussion. I love the genesis team! It would only be improved if you could get a Jewish scholar on to contribute midrashic and rabbinic traditions associated with the text.

  2. I’ve got a long drive ahead of me tonight and can’t wait to listen to this episode. The Genesis Team discussions are by far my favorite shows to listen to from Mormon Matters.

  3. I’m really enjoying the podcast and am about half way through. I wanted to get your perspective on something before going on. I’m grateful for the perspective being offered to deflect the common assumption of the sin of Sodom being homosexuality, using the text, ancient context and other scripture verses to support it. Our Gospel Doctrine teacher tried to do the same thing during our lesson on this story a few weeks back, but got a bit of push back when she read Ezekiel 16:49-50 and a class member pointed out that the “abomination” as mentioned in v. 50 was “homosexual behavior” as shown in the footnote. So my question is this: how do you work with an LDS audience when trying to challenge traditionally held beliefs, using documentary analysis and ancient context, when from their point of view any LDS footnote or JST modification trumps any and all of that? It’s what has me still feeling unable to advance these perspectives from this podcast, as well as others from the Genesis series, to my fellow LDS friends and class members. Thoughts or advice?

    1. And I should state that the reason often expressed as to why a footnote or JST change trumps the actual text is because of the LDS belief that modern revelation through these 2 sources reveals the texts’ “original intent”. So if you can’t jump over that hurdle first, how do you even attempt to show alternative perspective points to the text as discussed in the podcast?

      1. Hello Sisdm,

        Thanks for sharing this great question. The Hebrew word translated in the KJV as “abomination” is to’eva. This can have reference to a sexual sin in the Hebrew Bible, but it’s usually used in a much broader way. In Ezekiel, to’eva appears as a substantive connected with the verb “to do” or “to make.” Contextually, rather than a specific action, it seems to be used as a collective term for all sins that have a polluting effect. There’s no reason I can see to link it with sexual sin specifically, let alone homosexual acts.

        In a discussion such as this, we might explain that reference tools in the Bible are simply given as a guide. We should not assume that a footnote reflects THE correct interpretation of a passage, or even the Church’s current view. I think the following quote from Elder Bruce. R. McConkie who oversaw the work is very helpful:

        “[Regarding the] Joseph Smith Translation items, the chapter headings, Topical Guide, Bible Dictionary, footnotes, the Gazetteer, and the maps. None of these are perfect; they do not of themselves determine doctrine; there have been and undoubtedly now are mistakes in them. Cross-references, for instance, do not establish and never were intended to prove that parallel passages so much as pertain to the same subject. They are aids and helps only.”

        —Bruce R. McConkie, cited in Mark McConkie (editor), Doctrines of the Restoration: Sermons and Writings of Bruce R. McConkie (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1989), 289–290.

        1. Thank you for your reply and thank you so much for including that McConkie quote!! I have been looking for that quote for over a month! I had read it over a year ago but forgot where and couldn’t seem to find it again. I think it’s important for members to realize this about our footnotes and other aids because I don’t think they see it as possibly in error in any way. Now I have a GA quote to back up this point if it ever comes up and others think I’m just speaking my own opinion about it. 🙂

  4. Great discussion!

    Dave made the point that Lot’s daughters were engaged. These men are referred to “sons-in-law” (KJV) and the daughters are virgins.

    Other than their being virgins, how do we know they are engaged and not married?

    1. Hello Clair,

      Anciently, often a marriage was not viewed as complete until sexual intercourse had taken place. It served as the final rite of passage defining a “married” person versus someone who was still “engaged.” We even see this view happening in the New Testament with Joseph and Mary.

  5. Pingback: New “Genesis Team” Podcast: Abraham, Lot, and the Cities of Sodom & Gomorrah

  6. This is far the best treatise I have found on homosexuality and the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah…


    “Clearly, the general wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah was great.
    That’s not in question. Our concern here is whether homosexuality was
    part of that wickedness. Our analysis of Genesis shows that
    homosexuality was the principle behavior at issue in that passage.
    Ezekiel simply enumerates additional sins. The prophet doesn’t
    contradict Moses, but rather gives more detail.

    Stinginess and arrogance alone did not draw God’s wrath. Ezekiel
    anchored the list of crimes with the word “abominations.” This word
    takes us right back to homosexuality. The conduct Moses refers to in
    Genesis 18 he later describes in Leviticus as an “abomination” in God’s
    eyes.”–Greg Koukl from “What was the Sin of Sodom and Gomorrah?” found at the Stand to Reason website

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