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Joseph Smith the Prophet Hardcover – August, 1989
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Top Customer Reviews
This book is the written adaptation of Madsen's famous Joseph Smith tapes, recorded from a series of lectures at BYU's Education Week. I heard these tapes when I was a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in 1994 or 1995 and was deeply inspired. A few years ago, I borrowed a copy of the tapes from my brother and had a very different reaction: I found Madsen's wildly dramatic delivery of the lectures distracting and annoying. But the stories were still powerful, so I obtained a copy of the book. I'm very glad that I did.
The book could be subtitled, "Marvelous and powerful stories you don't know about the prophet Joseph Smith and his friends," for ultimately - beyond the structure Madsen places on them - that is what the book entails. Much of the deliciousness appears in the footnotes, where Madsen gives his sources (again, most of them primary) and tells stories that don't fit in the lectures.
The book starts from the assumption that Joseph Smith is a prophet and a good man. For a more historical and thorough treatment of Joseph Smith (also by a member of the Church), try Bushman's Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling.
I found it very inspiring. It indeed led me to look beyond Joseph and the other early members to the Savior: their love for Him and for His work inspires me to seek to do and to be better.
I recommend this series of lectures for those that want to learn more about Joseph Smith from a believing scholar who has spent most of his life studying him.
These series of lectures present the life of Joseph Smith in a way that is both powerful and unique. From his early life, to his study of religion, to his founding of the LDS Church, to his relationships with family and others close to him, to his death at Carthage Jail, Joseph Smith is discussed in Madsen's lectures in an easy to understand format. Regardless of what you may have heard already about Joseph Smith, these lectures are enjoyable.
Nothing Madsen discusses is sugar coated here. He goes over, in detail, Smith as boy, young adult and a man. Weaknesses, strengths and everything in between. There's no question Joseph Smith was a complex individual, and many aspects of Smith's personality and character are discussed here.
I totally recommend these series of lectures to LDS Sunday School teachers, soon-to-be missionaries, and anyone else, regardless of their faith or background, who really wants to understand more about the life and mission of Joseph Smith.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of my favorite books about Joseph Smith. Brother Madsen provides an insightful portrait of the Prophet Joseph and has unearthed many inspiring stories from those who interacted... Read morePublished 1 day ago by Guyzen
I was searching for a greater understanding and further testimony of the prophet and his life, this book provided it for me.Published 2 months ago by Lori Klienstuber
This book was a great review of the prophets life and provides a great understanding of his character. Read morePublished 3 months ago by S. Droge
Memorable insights into an amazing man. Madsen has clearly done his homework, and serves up a fascinating portrait of Mormonism's founding prophet.Published 13 months ago by BizTraveler
I enjoyed this book because it gave more details about Joseph Smith than I knew before. The fruits of this Smith's life, including especially the Book of Mormon. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Sean
I bought it for a gift. The person who received it was thrilled with it, stating that it was just what he was looking for.Published 18 months ago by Conley S. Thatcher