After helping my dad publish his scholarly writings for several years, I developed an eye for identifying chiasmus, an ancient poetic style that is prevalent throughout the Bible. One day, while sitting in Sunday School, I noticed elements of a chiastic pattern in The Family: A Proclamation to the World, a prophetic declaration released in September 1995. I showed my dad what I had found and he was able to use his highly trained eye to identify and diagram chiasmus throughout the entire document.
Excited by what we had discovered and enlightened by the new insights we had gained, we decided to share our findings in an e-book, A Chiastic Analysis of The Family: A Proclamation to the World. In process of writing this book, we identified several additional examples of chiasmus in the writings of modern prophets, so we also launched a blog, Latter-day Chiasmus.
Our hope is that, through our writings, more people will see the value of a chiastic approach to studying the words of the prophets. One major benefit we have identified is that chiasmus serves to reinforce the meaning of a particular passage, making it virtually impossible to misinterpret a prophet’s message.
Here is a list of our articles, so far:
• New Beginnings: David A. Bednar’s Facebook Chiasm (16 January 2017)
• The Faith Necessary To Persevere: D. Todd Christofferson’s Three Facebook Chiasms (30 December 2016)
• To Be Honest, To Be Kind: Chiasmus in Robert Louis Stevenson’s “A Christmas Sermon” (21 December 2016)
• The Happiest People You Will Find Anywhere: Quentin L. Cook’s Facebook Chiasm (4 December 2016)
• The Mountain of the Lord’s House: Chiasmus in the Salt Lake Temple Dedicatory Prayer (12 November 2016)
• He Lives: Chiasmus in “The Living Christ: The Testimony of the Apostles” (12 October 2016)
• His Answers Will Come: Robert D. Hales’ Facebook Chiasm (8 September 2016)
• To Love As He Loves: Chiasmus in Henry B. Eyring’s “Our Perfect Example” (8 September 2016)
• I’ve A Mother There: Chiasmus in Eliza R. Snow’s “O My Father” (29 August 2016)
• Seer Stones: Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s Facebook Chiasm (5 July 2016)
• The First Vision: Chiasmus in “Joseph Smith—History” (27 May 2016)
• My Witness: Henry B. Eyring’s Facebook Chiasm (26 May 2016)
• Chiasmus in Howard W. Hunter’s “The Great Symbol of Our Membership” (28 March 2016)