Thursday, September 20, 2018

Seven Terrific Book of Mormon Videos

A new video starring Kelsey Edwards debuted today on Book of Mormon Central's BMC Studios YouTube channel.

Entitled "Evidences of the Book of Mormon: Hebraisms," this video is the fifth in the Book of Mormon Central evidences series. Previous videos in this series include Evidences of the Book of Mormon: Complexity starring Kwaku El,

Evidences of the Book of Mormon: Plates,

Evidences of the Book of Mormon: Translation,

and Evidences of the Book of Mormon: Nahom, all starring Stephen Smoot.

At the end of the latest video on Hebraisms, a user can click on links to two very good KnoWhy videos: Is It Possible That a Single Author Wrote the Book of Mormon? KnoWhy #399,

and What Can Stylometry Tell Us about Book of Mormon Authorship? KnoWhy #389.

Together, these seven videos present powerful evidence that the Book of Mormon:
The world is full of questions. Book of Mormon Central is providing well-researched, well-written, well-illustrated answers. Book of Mormon Central's mission is to build enduring faith in Jesus Christ by making the Book of Mormon accessible, comprehensible, and defensible to the entire world. We take seriously the divine injunction to seek diligently out of the best books learning, even by study and also by faith D&C 88:118 and D&C 109:7, 14.

Six of the seven videos are available on the Book of Mormon Central en  Español YouTube channel:
Kelsey Edwards is a young Latter-day Saint actress who has played roles in several films. Kwaku El is a young Latter-day Saint actor best known for his comedy. Stephen O. Smoot is a brilliant young Latter-day Saint scholar with many publications to his credit. Stephen and Kwaku have appeared together several times on Three Mormons produced by the outstanding More Good Foundation.

Many people and groups produce Book of Mormon videos. What really separates the men from the boys is their degree of scholarly rigor. Go to this Book of Mormon Central blog post and click on "References" to see Book of Mormon Central's bona fides for the Hebraisms video thanks to the great work of another brilliant young Latter-day Saint scholar, Ryan Dahle.

How good are these videos? Elder Larry Y. Wilson, Executive Director of the Temple Department, thought our complexity video deserved to be on the homepage so every member of the Church could see it. That is unlikely, of course, but as of September 20, 2018 these videos have earned over 185,000 views in English and 230,000 in Spanish. These are relatively modest numbers, but our skills are improving and this material will have a long digital life.

We hope videos such as these help fulfill Pres. Ezra Taft Benson's vision of flooding the earth with the Book of Mormon. We believe videos such as these help parents and educators fulfill Elder M. Russell Ballard's injunction in his important address "The Opportunities and Responsibilities of CES Teachers in the 21st Century." Shortly after Elder Ballard's talk on February 26, 2016, began linking to Book of Mormon Central as a trusted independent voice supporting the mission of the Church:
Elder Kevin W. Pearson speaking at FAIR 2018 told everyone to use material from FAIRMormon, Interpreter, and Book of Mormon Central, as well as to support these groups by donating time and money. The Church can't do this for itself, he said. Trusted, independent voices are essential. Elder Pearson's talk was important enough it was featured on the homepage for over a month.

Some early feedback on the new Hebraisms video:
  • "Please keep making these videos. They are amazing." Delvis
  • "Inspiring! Enlightening! Solid! Wow! I'm floored! And ... the animation was cool." Katie
  • "Very cool." Tory
  • "This is a great video, very informative and the narrator is easy to listen to, I subscribed to hear more like this." Christine
  • "This video is incredible! Thank you very much for sharing!" Eduardo
  • "Thank you for making these! Especially loved learning about and it came to pass!" Sylvia
A handful of people with Jewish backgrounds have joined the Church largely because of the Book of Mormon. This comment is from one of them: "My father is Jewish and mother Chilean (including some Lamanite). I found Christ through reading the Book of Mormon. I love your video and the vast amount of research to make such a brief summary of such an extensive topic. Please continue to share these." Gregorio. You can read his moving story here.

As is typical, hardened anti-Mormons swarmed around this video and began attacking it and us (Book of Mormon Central) almost immediately. We take their vitriol in stride. "Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad; for great is your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." Matthew 5: 11,12.