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Analysis of Joseph Smith's Accounts of His First Vision

TitleAnalysis of Joseph Smith's Accounts of His First Vision
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsAllen, James B., and John W. Welch
EditorWelch, John W.
Book TitleOpening the Heavens: Accounts of Divine Manifestation, 1820-1844
PublisherBYU Press/Deseret Book
CityProvo, UT/Salt Lake City
KeywordsEarly Church History; First Vision; Multiple First Vision Accounts; Smith, Joseph, Jr.
The Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ and the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began when God the Father and his Son Jesus Christ appeared to the youthful Joseph Smith in spring 1820. In the brilliant light of this key event, almost everything else in Church history pales by comparison.
Fortunately, Joseph Smith spoke and wrote on several occasions about this sublime and formative experience, now known as the First Vision. In addition to numerous circumstantial and secondary evidences that have expanded and supported our historical knowl-edge of this all-important event, ten accounts, written or dictated by Joseph Smith himself or recorded at the time by someone who heard him, are available to modern readers. Few events so central to the foundation of any world religion are so informatively documented.