A New Witness for Christ

Chiasma are not readily apparent to readers of the scriptures who are untrained in their identification. In fact, chiasmus as a literary form was virtually unknown to Bible scholars when The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was restored through Joseph Smith. It is obvious that Joseph was unaware of the form when he translated the plates of the Book of Mormon. Yet now, through the careful analysis performed by the author, over 960 Book of Mormon chiasma have been identified and are listed and analyzed herein.

Author H. Clay Gorton, in his previous book Language of the Lord - New Discoveries of Chiasma in the Doctrine and Covenants, has already made a powerful case that chiasma are a characteristic of the Lord's speech pattern, and that their existence in the scriptures is strong evidence that those scriptures constitute divine revelation. He identified over 220 chiasma in the Doctrine & Covenants. Now, in this book, he documents over 960 chiasma in the Book of Mormon! He defines eight distinct types of chiastic structures. He takes all the chiastic passages found in the Book of Mormon and presents them in easy-to-read diagrams and explanations.

A New Witness for Christ - Chiastic Structures in the Book of Mormon is an essential tool for scripture study - one which deserves a place in the basic library of every LDS gospel scholar. It also constitutes a powerful challenge to anti-Mormon critics, who must now provide a rational explanation for the existence of the great quantities of identified chiasma in the Book of Mormon and in the Doctrine and Covenants, if they deny the divine origin of those sacred scriptures.

Understanding the form and nature of chiasma opens the way to a profound new level of scriptural understanding, since the structures of the chiasma often clarify the meanings of the passages involved. It has been wisely observed that "You don't understand the Book of Mormon till you know and understand this book - A New Witness for Christ!"

When you read this book you'll discover:

Nine hundred sixty-one chiasma have been identified in the Book of Mormon. This book lists and documents them all.

Fifty-three percent of the verses in the Book of Mormon are chiastic (3,394 verses out of 6,404). Writings from the small plates of Nephi are 72% chiastic, the abridgment of the large plates of Nephi is 46% chiastic.

Thirty-three different authors in the Book of Mormon used chiasma in their speaking and writing, including God the Father and Jesus Christ, the Hebrew prophets Isaiah and Zenos; Jaredites including Mahonri Moriancumer (the brother of Jared) and the daughter of Jared.

Authors in the Book of Mormon used different levels of chiasticity. Lehi's words are 83% chiastic: King Benjamin's, 79%; Nephi's, 76%; Mahonri Moriancumer's, 75%, Samuel's and Enos', 63%; Moroni's 52%; Jesus Christ's, 43%; and Mormon's 36%. Mormon's commentary verses are 49% chiastic, his abridgment verses, 42%. Moroni's commentary verses are 65% chiastic, his abridgment verses, 49%!

The entire book of 1 Nephi is a chiastic masterpiece, with layer upon layer of chiastic structures within it. There is a global literal chiasmus with 165 repeated elements starting from the beginning and the end of the book, drawing together towards the center. There is also a global conceptual chiasmus in 1 Nephi, plus 107 additional chiastic structures. Amazing!

You don't know the Book of Mormon until you've read and assimilated the wealth of information in this book!

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