p. 162. Revelation
- Richard Lyman Bushman
‘Revelation’ contends that, though Smith's First Vision came out of a widespread culture of visions, the translation of the Book of Mormon was without parallel. How Smith wrote the book is hotly debated. It seems far beyond the capacities of someone with little education, leading Mormons to believe it must be inspired. It is best understood as an elaboration of the Bible, extending the history of Israel to the western hemisphere. It established the principle of godly people everywhere receiving revelations. No single doctrine distinguishes Mormonism more sharply than the belief in direct revelation, which underlies everything from the governing authority of the church to every Mormon's daily life.