What to do with the JST…and the GNT

A lengthy volume, just published, on the Book of Moses has got me thinking about the Joseph Smith Translation again. Going on five years now, I find it difficult to avoid the conclusion that there is no place for the Inspired Version in the study of the ancient world in general, textual criticism of the Bible in particular. If the JST is
to be studied academically, it is within the context of the nineteenth century. Such have been my tortured thoughts.

Of the various types of criticism of the Bible and other ancient literature, textual criticism is the most scientific, the least interpretive, the most elitist. It is the domain of the scholar’s scholar: introductions to many critical editions are written in Latin, even today. Based on available witnesses, through reconstruction of
fragmentary passages, and perhaps with recourse to the occasional emendation, the main objective of this type of criticism is to restore the text to read as it did when it left the author’s hand. Or as close to that as possible. Right?
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