Historical Mormon Smackdown: Kimball vs. Pratt [edited]

Well, it turns out that we think by almost 2:1 proportions that the Proclamation is more influential today. I guess that isn’t too shocking. I wonder however what the results would have been if I changed “influential today” to “important”. But probably I’ll save that for March Mormon Doctrine Madness next year.

Anyhoo, on with the show:
Which is the more influential early Mormon theological bigwig: Heber C. Kimball or Orson Pratt?

Heber C. Kimball: a visionary man, a member of the First Presidency, boon companion to Brigham, possible believer in Adam-God and Multiple Mortal Probations

Orson Pratt: An apostle who left the church and came back, put the Book of Mormon into chapter and verse, created the first good attempt at systemizing Mormon Theology, gave that one talk in the Journal of Discourse that all the Anti’s quote about Jesus, Mary, and Martha.

Well, what think ye? Please vote in the blogpoll on the right or below and post your thoughts.

10 Replies to “Historical Mormon Smackdown: Kimball vs. Pratt [edited]”

  1. If we are talking about being more influential on the church of the 19th century then it is definitely HCK. If we are talking about influencing the church of today then I’ve got to go with Pratt. Posted by Jeffrey Giliam

  2. On another note, can anyone tell me how to get these polls to work in posts. I can get them working on the sidebar, but not in posts. I actually would like to keep the results for posterity (and allow folks to vote in the future) but I haven’t bothered thusfar as I haven’t figured out the above. Thanks. Posted by John C.

  3. Pratt, like JFS and BRM after, contributed not only to our interpretation of doctrine, but also to our overall approach to doctrine. Their view, which most share today, is that our doctrine is clear, self-consistent, and rational, and therefore lends itself to systemization. I personally think that this approach has some pitfalls. Posted by will

  4. The problem I have with HCK is this: why didn’t he publish? He may not have had the best education, but he had a gift for wit, plain-speaking, and sermons filled with earthy language. The name of the game in the church hierarchy is “publish or perish,” and he sat on the bench.I do give HCK credit for this theological formulation: “[O]ur Father in heaven was once as I am, if faithful I shall be as he is now.” But it’s not quite as pithy as Lorenzo Snow’s couplet. Posted by Justin

  5. If I had it to do all over again, I would change my vote. The more I think about it, it is because of people like Heber C. Kimball that Mormonism resists the kind of systematic theology that Orson Pratt sought. I think that this is a good thing. Posted by John C.

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