2013 Edition of LDS Scriptures

As a full-time missionary I started a process of finding the typographical errors in the LDS edition of the scriptures that I owned (I am a bit of a copy editor at heart). Examples include:

  • Alma 9 footnote 4a – there was a double dash between (9–10) instead of a single [this might have been an issue with the master copy from which prints were made].
  • Leviticus 20:9 included an extra space
  • In the Topical Guide under Affliction, “D&C” needed to be inserted after Helaman 12:3.
  • In the Index to the Triple Combination under Power, Powerful the reference listed as Alma 3:15 should be Alma 31:5 [correct online – I’m not sure about the new printed version]

Then there is my favorite typo (this has been corrected for a number of years but was a typo in the scriptures I received in 1992) from Luke 7:39.

The LDS Church did many other things than just fix the sporadic typos that occur – they standardized fonts, headings, and updated context based on all the work they’ve been doing with primary sources, particularly from Joseph Smith’s life. This is where the great and potentially greatly beneficial changes are – in updating the context of modern day revelations and providing clearer chronologies of church history.

One other thing I like is that the Church documented all changes. Even though 99% of changes were to supplementary material (e.g., Topical Guide or headings or footnotes), there will be individuals who use these changes as yet another tired way to attack the LDS Church (“I thought the church was perfect!”). I say that from experience because corrections or changes over the course of various editions of the LDS scriptures came up frequently when I interacted with certain individuals as a full-time missionary for the LDS Church. I was always frustrated by people dogmatically picking at such motes – not frustrated by their arguments, just frustrated that they criticized the LDS Church for having the audacity to update its own scriptures yet they saw no problem in changing which translation of the Bible they used. Some of the translations of the Bible are substantially different from the others. These same people were also not willing to read the Book of Mormon themselves; they tended to rely on the word of their pastor or “un-fettered” [anti-Mormon] writings about Mormons instead of finding out for themselves. Many of the people I talked to who were this way were pleasant individuals, they just did not care to hear about Mormons from Mormons. We all have our biases and inconsistencies, which is why the Savior taught that we should not worry so much about judging others as we should making sure that we are free from sin.

If you have time and interest, peruse the detailed summary of changes (PDF linked to in the preceding paragraph). There are many interesting changes.

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