What is a Possible Explanation of the Striking Similarity Between Moroni 10:9-17 and 1 Corinthians 12:8-11

Daniel H. Ludlow

Some people have been bothered by the similarity between the two scriptures listed above inasmuch as the reference in the New Testament was written on the eastern continent in the first century A.D. and the reference in the Book of Mormon was written several hundred years later and without any known access to the New Testament account. Several plausible explanations of this similarity could be given; however, the following possibility seems to be most reasonable: The Savior could have given a great sermon on the manifestations or gifts of the Spirit on both the eastern and western continents. Thus both Paul and Moroni would have been acquainted with the teachings of this sermon, just as they were both acquainted with the teachings of the Sermon on the Mount. Neither the New Testament nor the Book of Mormon claims to contain all the teachings of Jesus Christ. In fact, the Book of Mormon specifically states the "more part" of the teachings of the resurrected Christ were not included on the plates of Mormon (3 Nephi 26:6-11), and John indicates that not all of the teachings of the Savior were contained in the New Testament (John 21:25).

Two other possible explanations of this similarity are as follows: (1) These teachings on the gifts of the Spirit could have been recorded by a prophet in Old Testament times, and thus could have been available to Moroni through the brass plates of Laban and to Paul through one of the manuscripts that has not been included in our Old Testament; (2) the truths of the gospel are revealed to man through the power of the Holy Ghost, and the teachings concerning the gifts of the Spirit could have been revealed to both Moroni and Paul in essentially the same order.

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