4. "Remember the New Covenant, Even the Book of Mormon"
Joseph Smith was prepared to translate the Book of Mormon
When Joseph first learned of the plates from Moroni, he was only 17 and clearly not ready to receive the plates. That changed as Moroni met with Joseph from 1823 to 1827. The mental, emotional, and spiritual significance of an annual visit with a heavenly being can hardly be overestimated.
Miraculous translation of the Book of Mormon
Almost all of the Book of Mormon as we have it today (not including the lost 116 pages) was translated from April 7 to the end of June 1829. Here are 202 statements by Joseph Smith, Oliver Cowdery, Emma Smith, the Whitmer family, and others that tell about the translation.
The text was dictated by Joseph to eight different scribes. The scribes seem to have written just what they heard, no more and no less. There does not appear to have been any explanatory conversation between the translator and his scribes.
Short description of the witnesses' sacred responsibility, their lives, and their testimonies.
From 1833 to 1869 William McLellin in 1833 interviewed all of the three witnesses and some of the eight witnesses. All continually testified that they believed the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.
The Book of Mormon was not a creation of Joseph Smith
The Book of Mormon fits into the context of Jerusalem around 600 BC regarding divine revelation, deification, the iron rod, Jehovah/Jesus, and the temple.
Securing the copyright
The second edition of Opening the Heavens (2017) is now available now through BYU Studies.