The Most Correct Book: Why the Book of Mormon Is the Keystone Scripture
I like the way Brian M. Hauglid summarizes the meaning behind Joseph Smith’s declaration that Book of Mormon is the “most correct of any book.”
Brain states, “He states that the Prophet “no doubt had reference to the contents the doctrines and teachings of the Book of Mormon rather than to its grammatical construction, punctuation, and spelling.”2 Somehow this concept is never developed, nor even introduced, in Nyman’s volume. The author is trying to make a neat little package using the verses from D&C 20, but in limiting his analysis to the points contained in those verses, he cannot discuss the many significant doctrines and teachings (the contents) of the Book of Mormon with the same emphasis given those teachings in the Book of Mormon itself.
I suggest that the statement of Joseph Smith can only be understood and appreciated in light of the doctrines and teachings of the Book of Mormon. According to Elder Boyd K. Packer, “true doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior. The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior.”3 President Ezra Taft Benson has said “the Book of Mormon is the keystone of our religion, . . . the keystone of our testimony, the keystone of our doctrine, and the keystone in the witness of our Lord and Savior.”4 To emphasize the Savior’s power, President Benson has also stated that “the Lord works from the inside out. The world works from the outside in. . . . The world would mold men by changing their environment. Christ changes men, who then change their environment. The world would shape human behavior, but Christ can change human nature.”5
Joseph Smith’s statement, therefore, is a concise declaration that the Book of Mormon is the “most correct of any book” because it has the power to change individuals into more correct (Christlike) people. This change can only come because of better understanding Christ as the “keystone” figure of the Book of Mormon, and by applying the atonement, which em-braces all of the “precepts” that bring one nearer to God.”