Pearl of Great Price (Latter Day Saints)

The Pearl of Great Price is part of the standard works of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church; see also Mormonism) and some other Latter Day Saint denominations.

The first paragraph of the Introductory Note in the LDS edition of the Pearl of Great Price reads:

:The Pearl of Great Price is a selection of choice materials touching many significant aspects of the faith and doctrine of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. These items were produced by Joseph Smith Jr. and were published in the Church periodicals of his day.

Contents

The "Pearl of Great Price" contains five sections: "Selections from the Book of Moses", "The Book of Abraham", "Joseph Smith—Matthew", "Joseph Smith—History" and "The Articles of Faith". The "Book of Moses" and "Joseph Smith—Matthew" are portions of the "Book of Genesis" and the "Book of Matthew" (respectively) from the "Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible". "Joseph Smith—History" is a first-person narrative of Joseph Smith, Jr.'s life before the founding of the church including an account of the First Vision and other heavenly visitations. The "Articles of Faith" are a concise listing of thirteen fundamental doctrines of Mormonism composed by Joseph Smith, Jr. as part of a 1842 letter sent to "Long" John Wentworth, editor of the "Chicago Democrat".

The "Book of Abraham" results from papyri which were bought by Smith, which he claims to have translated. This translation became a book dealing with Abraham's journeys in Egypt, containing many distinctive Mormon doctrines such as exaltation and plurality of gods. Considerable controversy surrounds the surviving papyri claimed as the source for the translation of the "Book of Abraham".

The Book of Moses and Book of Abraham accounts have been compared to Life of Adam and Eve and other Jewish Pseudepigrapha due to some similarities, including accounts of Adam and Eve's temptation and life after leaving the Garden of Eden Fact|date=February 2007. The Book of Moses also contains teachings and prophecies of Enoch, including his testimony of the Only Begotten, Jesus Christ.

The original contents of the book were slightly different, reproducing material found in the "Doctrine and Covenants" and a poem entitled "Oh Say What is Truth?" (which is now found in the LDS hymnal). In 1878 some material from the "Book of Moses" was added. The Pearl of Great Price was canonized in 1880. In 1902 the material reproduced in the "Doctrine and Covenants" was removed. Two other documents, now found as Doctrine and Covenants 137 and 138, were added to the "Pearl of Great Price" in 1976 and moved to their current location in 1979.

1851 edition

The Pearl of Great Price was first compiled by Franklin D. Richards in Liverpool, England. It was compiled from the writings of Joseph Smith. Some items were later removed or moved to the Doctrine & Covenants. It contained the following:

* Extracts from the Prophecy of Enoch (Moses 6:43 - 7:69)
* The words of God, which he spake unto Moses (Moses 1:1-42)
* A section with no heading (Moses 2:1-5, 40; 8:13-30)
* The Book of Abraham including Facsimile 1, 2 and 3 from the Book of Abraham
* An extract from a Translation of the Bible (Joseph Smith - Matthew)
* A Key to the Revelations of St. John (Doctrine & Covenants 77)
* A Revelation and Prophecy (Doctrine & Covenants 87)
* Extracts from the History of Joseph Smith (Joseph Smith - History)
* From the Doctrine and Covanants of the Church Commandment to the Church concerning baptism (Doctrine & Covenants 20:71, 37, 72-75)
* The duties of members after they are received by baptism (Doctrine & Covenants 20:68-69)
* Method of administering the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper (Doctrine & Covenants 20:75-79)
* The Duties of the Elders, Priests, Teachers, Deacons, and Members of the Church of Christ (Doctrine & Covenants 20:38-44; 107:11; 20:45-59, 70, 80)
* On Priesthood (Doctrine & Covenants 107:1-10, 12-20)
* The Calling and Duties of the Twelve Apostles (Doctrine & Covenants 107:23, 33)
* The Calling and Duties of the Seventy (Doctrine & Covenants 107:34, 93-100)
* Extract from a revelation given July, 1830 (Doctrine & Covenants 27:5-18)
* Rise of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Doctrine & Covenants 20:1-36)
* "Times and Seasons", Vol. III, page 709 (Articles of Faith)
* Truth (a poem by John Jaques)

Current Edition

Many of the revelations given to Joseph Smith regarding the church were moved to the Doctrine and Covenants. Currently the Pearl of Great price contains:

* Introductory Note
* Selections from the Book of Moses
* The Book of Abraham
* Joseph Smith - Matthew
* Joseph Smith - History
* The Articles of Faith

References

*Citation
author=LDS Church
title=Pearl of Great Price: being a Choice Selection from the Revelations, Translations, and Narrations of Joseph Smith, First Prophet, Seer, and Revelator to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
author-link=The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
year=1878
publisher=LDS Church
publication-place=Salt Lake City
url=http://books.google.com/books?id=LGkTGPfxit4C
.
*Citation
title=Pearl of Great Price: a Selection from the Revelations, Translations, and Narrations of Joseph Smith, First Prophet, Seer, and Revelator to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
author=LDS Church
author-link=The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
year=1907
publisher=Deseret News
publication-place=Salt Lake City
url=http://books.google.com/books?id=n7QTAAAAYAAJ
.

External links

* [http://scriptures.lds.org/en/pgp/contents Official Online edition of "The Pearl of Great Price"]
* [http://scriptures.lds.org/en/pgp/introduction Introductory note to "The Pearl of Great Price"] from the official internet edition on the LDS Church website.
* "The sourcetext|source=Pearl of Great Price" at Wikisource.
* [http://www.boap.org/LDS/LDS-scriptures/Pearl_of_GP "historical notes on The Pearl of Great Price"]
* [http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/basic/scripture/pearl.html Summary of the Pearl of Great Price] on LightPlanet
* [http://www.ldsfaq.byu.edu/view.asp?q=108 What is the Pearl of Great Price?] from Brigham Young University's LDS FAQ.
* [http://www.xmission.com/~research/central/resscri5.htm Pearl of Great Price] - Contents listed by edition


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