Opening the Heavens: Accounts of Divine Manifestations

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    (as of 06/24/2018 06:29 UTC - Details)

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    “Opening the Heavens allows readers to decide for themselves about certain key events of the Restoration … All the crucial documents are laid open for inspection with enough commentary to put them in context. For serious students of Latter-day Saint history, nothing could be more helpful—and inspiring.”
    —Richard Lyman Bushman

    “The categorizing of a large number of primary sources makes it easy to analyze the particular events that are so crucial to an informed study of Mormon origins…For those who seek inspiration and for the historian, it is a valuable resource.”
    —Daniel P. Dwyer, Journal of Mormon History

    “Included are chapters on the first vision, the book of Mormon, the restoration of the priesthood, visionary experiences, the restoration of temple keys and powers, and succession in the presidency. These are not matters of minor historical detail; they go rather to the very heart of the truth claims made by the church and therefore to its reason for being…Everyone with an interest in the origins of Mormonism, whether as a matter of faith or simply as an academic interest, should read this book.”
    —Kevin L. Barney, FARMS Review

    Think what New Testament scholars would give to have access to a single letter that Mary wrote about the raising of Lazarus. We have many such documents that relate to the Restoration of the gospel in our dispensation. Opening the Heavens records hundreds of accounts of divine manifestations relating to the Restoration—events that strengthen our faith and expand our knowledge of Church History. Did you know for instance, that there are ten recorded accounts of the first vision from the lifetime of Joseph Smith? That there are seventy-one documents that deal directly with priesthood restoration? This volumes brings together, for the first time, all of the known documents from Joseph Smith’s lifetime relating directly to key events of the Restoration that were accompanied by divine manifestations. These first-hand accounts uniquely convey the spirit of these important occasions and provide precious details that help modern readers construct a vivid image of what transpired. Many new historical resources have become available since the first edition of Opening the Heavens. Newly discovered testimonies have been added to this second edition. Many hours have been spent in updating the footnotes, especially to the Joseph Smith Papers Project. This valuable collection offers remarkable access to the earliest historical sources. The ebook version of the second edition includes live links to online resources that contain images of original documents and information about their creation.

    Contents

    Introduction
    The First Vision
    The Earliest Accounts of Joseph Smith’s First Vision
    —Dean C. Jessee
    Analysis of Joseph Smith’s Accounts of His First Vision
    —James B. Allen and John W. Welch
    The Coming Forth of the Book of Mormon
    The Miraculous Timing of the Translation of the Book of Mormon
    —John W. Welch
    The Restoration of the Priesthood
    The Earliest Accounts of the Restoration of the Priesthood
    —Brian Q. Cannon and BYU Studies Staff
    Visions upon Visions
    Parting the Veil: Joseph Smith’s Seventy-six Documented Visionary Experiences
    —Alexander L. Baugh
    The Restoration of Temple Keys and Powers
    “A Pentecost and Endowment Indeed”: Six Eyewitness Accounts of the Kirtland Temple Experience
    —Steven C. Harper
    The Succession in the Presidency
    The Mantle of the Prophet Joseph Passes to Brother Brigham: One Hundred Twenty-nine Testimonies of a Collective Spiritual Witness
    —Lynne Watkins Jorgensen



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