Joseph Smith’s Genesis 50 Additions

I’ve recently completed a 2-year study of the Old Testament book of Genesis. What a rich, sacred history God has given us in the opening pages of His Word. Though the book is a mere 50 chapters, it’s so packed with amazing events, prophesies and wisdom I could easily spend many more years in a dedicated study of these 78 pages of Scripture and continue to find fresh and new insight.

When I came to the end of my 2-year study, as I closed the cover of my Bible, I sat thinking about how the things begun in Genesis are fulfilled in Christ. I thought about the Patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and the closing chapter of the book, which so beautifully highlights God’s faithfulness. The end of the book of Genesis prepares the reader for a seamless transition into the book of Exodus, where God continues the sacred history of His covenant faithfulness with His chosen people.

As I contemplated the final passages of Genesis, I remembered that Joseph Smith added 13 verses to the 50th chapter. With heart and mind saturated with the biblical writing, I opened the LDS edition of the Bible and turned to the appendix containing excerpts from the Joseph Smith Translation. As I read the words Joseph inserted between verses 24 and 25 it was like a needle skimming roughly across a phonograph record.

One thing that jumped out at me was an oft-repeated phrase that made a debut in Joseph’s added verses. Five times in this short passage there is reference to “the fruit/seed of my/thy/the loins.” This wording does not appear anywhere in the biblical book of Genesis. Indeed, in the entire Bible only one use of a similar phrase is found, “the fruit of his loins,” in Acts 2:30. To find it five times coming out of the blue in Joseph’s addition was striking. It might not be doctrinally important phraseology, but it does highlight the distinctiveness of Joseph’s addition.

The most remarkable subsection of Joseph Smith’s addition to Genesis is found in his verses numbered 30-33. It is here that we find a “prophesy” regarding the nineteenth century appearance of the Book of Mormon and the work of Joseph Smith himself. Though there is no biblical manuscript support for Joseph’s additions to Genesis, the LDS Church asserts that this passage is an example of Joseph Smith’s mission “foretold in ancient scripture” (as indicated at

Moses parts the Red Sea

Joseph Smith’s Genesis 50:34 prophesies that when Moses would later lead the people of Israel, he would “smite the waters of the Red Sea with his rod.” But in the King James version of the Bible we learn that this is not what actually happened. Exodus 14:16-21 says that Moses was instructed by God to–and subsequently did–lift up his rod and stretch out his hand over the sea, whereupon the sea was divided by the LORD and the people crossed on dry ground. Moses did not “smite” the waters of the sea. In Exodus 7:17 it is recorded that Moses used his rod to smite the rivers; in Exodus 17:6 he used his rod to smite a rock; but he did not use his rod to smite the Red Sea as Joseph Smith’s addition to Genesis 50 says.

All in all, I see several reasons to reject the idea that Joseph Smith’s additions to the biblical text are authentic. Genesis 50:24-25 (without Joseph’s 800 word addition) says this:

And Joseph said unto his brethren, I die: and God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. And Joseph took an oath of the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones from hence.

And this is exactly what they did (Exodus 13:19).

About Sharon Lindbloom

Sharon surrendered her life to the Lord Jesus Christ in 1979. Deeply passionate about Truth, Sharon loves serving as a full-time volunteer research associate with Mormonism Research Ministry. Sharon and her husband live in Minnesota.
This entry was posted in Bible, Joseph Smith and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to Joseph Smith’s Genesis 50 Additions

  1. DaveyMike says:

    Excellent post.

    I was a Mormon for 47 years before coming to Christ. I am still struggling to find my voice, at it were, to know how to engage and witness to Mormons.

    This reasoned (and civil) post is a good example to me of giving “an answer to everyone…with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15).

    Thank you.


  2. falcon says:

    Joseph Smith, as a prophet and translator of ancient text and interpreter of the Bible, is the religious version of amateur night. Joseph Smith’s real gift was his ability to con people into believing that he was hearing from God. I think the Apostle John (which I believe Mormons think is still wandering around the earth) said it best in Revelation 22:18-19: “I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.”
    While the Book of Revelation appears to be the specific reference here, none-the-less, I think we can see the seriousness of messing around with God’s Word. Mormons who come here and read the postings have sufficient information to reject the fraudulent claims of Joseph Smith and turn to the living God. They choose, however, to believe a lie from a false prophet with a false gospel.

  3. jackg says:


    Praise the LORD that you have been set free from the bondage of Mormonism! I just encourage you to tell Mormons your story of how Jesus Christ called you to Himself and redeemed you. That’s the first step in finding your voice.


    I love your directness. The sad things is that Mormons will find any way they can to defend the JST, which really isn’t a translation (one needs manuscripts from which to translate). He worked more as an editor than a translator. One would think this post would really wake up some Mormons and cause them to think. However, they must cling to their testimony that JS was a prophet because when they stand up in sacrament meeting on fast Sunday, they say, “I KNOW JS was a prophet…” It’s very difficult to recant such a demonstration of your faith. But, alas, I am off-topic. When I read this from the post: “As I read the words Joseph inserted between verses 24 and 25 it was like a needle skimming roughly across a phonograph record” I though, WOW! That describes it beautifully. However, to some people, the sound of the scratching needle obviously enhances their listening experience, and will ultimately argue that the incongrous sound is actually supposed to be a part of the music when it’s obvious that it’s not.

    Grace and Peace!

  4. falcon says:

    Having never been a Mormon, I don’t know what it takes to crack through the protective shell that the members testimony provides. I would like to hear/read DaveyMike’s account of what got him thinking that maybe Mormonism wasn’t the real deal. I had some friends in graduate school that were smokers. I’d look at them in total amazment and unbelief when they’d talk to me about their worst fear was waking up in the middle of the night and finding that they were out of cigarettes. They would actual race down to an all night convienence store at two in the morning to get some. Honestly, one guy went and bought a whole duffle bag full of cigarettes when one of the places was running a special. I’d just laugh at their folly. One of them said to me “You just don’t understand addiction.” So my little story here is to illustrate my total amazement, that given all the information available to the contrary, Mormons still cling to that special feeling that only comes from God that confirms that what is false is true. I don’t get it! That’s why I don’t demonstrate a lot of patience when I post here and am so direct. For example, in Sharon’s article above, we’ve got Joseph Smith editing the Bible. Come on…..give me a break. Isn’t that enough to even give a little bit of a hint that something isn’t right here? In my professinal life I had to deal with people who would deny the obvious when presented with the facts regarding a person or situation. We’re dealing with a protective response because the alternate view is more than they can bear emotionally. Anything to protect the status quo. Way too much to lose. That’s why I’m fascinated by the stories of people who worked their way out of the maze.

  5. jackg says:


    One thing that might help you understand the Mormon mindset is that if they begin to ask any questions, they are immediately cautioned to beware of apostatizing. This is a huge fear factor that generally puts an end to inquisitive minds when things just don’t add up. The other usual response is: “We’ll understand it when we get to heaven” or some such variation. Personally, I think it all boils down to pride. I say this because it is human nature to recant something that you have been so adamant about, especially when you are judged/gauged by the power of your testimony. Whenever members speak of another member, it is in relationship to the testimony: “Wow, Brother so-and-so has a strong testimony,” I think you get the point. So, when a post like this comes along that seems totally rational to us, the Mormon generally has to scramble to defend the charge no matter how impotent the argument might be. That’s when you get the testimony thrown into their defense, as well as the manifestation of the “persecution complex” that comes along with it. I’m pretty sure the Mormon responses to my comments will reveal the truth of what I’ve been saying.

    Grace and Peace!

  6. jackg says:


    I meant to say that it is not in human nature to recant something that we have been so adamant about. There’s pride in that, and it’s difficult to do.

  7. DaveyMike says:

    I have not yet written down my full “story.” (I avoid the word testimony to avoid confusion with my past life). There are bits and pieces on a blog that I just started:

    I grew up in Provo, served a mission in Paris France, graduated from BYU, lived and worked in Utah until I moved to North Carolina in 1993.

    I come from a four-generation Mormon family (five if you include my children). I served in many leadership roles (High Priest group leader, Bishopric) and taught nearly every kind of class in the church (Priesthood, Sunday School, Primary, etc.)

    I was born again last year after more than 40 years in Mormonism. My exit from Mormonism is a story of grace, pure and simple. The short version is that I was in a wretched state and I thought I could work my way out of it by taking on more callings, reading the Book of Mormon more often and other works. I finally cried out to God that I could not do it on my own and He offered me His grace.

    I did not leave the church because of its history or its doctrine–although I was certainly aware of its problems. In fact, I was am amateur apologist who worked as a researcher at BYU during college.

    A key aspect of being born again is a renewing of the mind. All of the Mormon apologetic arguments and justifications melted away for me after I became a new creature.

    More comments coming in smaller chunks related to specific posts.

  8. germit says:

    DaveyMike wrote:

    A key aspect of being born again is a renewing of the mind. All of the Mormon apologetic arguments and justifications melted away for me after I became a new creature.

    Wow !!! the pragmatic part of me would love to put whatever this is in a bottle and mass produce it….. I know it’s not as simple as that . I look forward to learning more about your story DMikey, and by all means, welcome to Mormon Coffee……have a hot beverage, your choice, on us……. GERMIT

  9. DaveyMike says:

    falcon wrote:

    To “my total amazement, given all the information available to the contrary, Mormons still cling to that special feeling that only comes from God that confirms that what is false is true. I don’t get it!”

    I think it boils down to two “feelings.”

    One, the burning in the bosom (D&C 9: 8) that a Mormon interprets as the Holy Ghost testifying of truth.

    Two, the “spirit of contention” (3 Ne. 11: 29) that a Mormon will say exists when someone questions the church.

    After being born again, I have a new insight on these feelings.

    First, let me say that for a Mormon or a traditional Christian, learning to heed the Spirit is essential in our walk with God. But as a born-again Christian, I have also come to rely on the objective and reasonable measure of the Bible to test the spirits (1 Jn. 4:1) that I feel/felt.

    In hindsight, I can see where I have let my heart deceive me (Deut. 11:16).

    Click here for more

  10. DaveyMike says:

    GERMIT wrote:

    “…welcome to Mormon Coffee……have a hot beverage, your choice, on us.”

    I never had a hankerin’ for coffee. But since being in North Carolina and as an ex-Mormon I have learned to love the tea.

    I also live among the vineyards of the Yadkin Valley, so I am learning to appreciate the fruit of the vine (but in “moderation”).

  11. falcon says:

    Jackg & DaveyMike,
    Thank you very much, both of you. You are an encouragment. God drew you to Himself not out of some clever argument or wisdom of man but by the power of the Holy Spirit. Makes me want to cry….literally. Jack you gave some terrifc insights into the Mormon mindset. Never having been there, it’s really difficult for me to understand. Least anyone should think I’m too hardcore, I’m pretty gentile when encountering Mormons firsthand. In fact, I had three Mormon students in my Fellowship of Christian Athletes group back in my working days. That organization is very evangelically oriented, but the Mormon kids kept coming every week. I did have my spiritual antenna up high. If the Mormon kids knew the difference between what we believed and what they believed, I don’t know. But they never tried to use the group as a recruiting ground.
    Again, I appreciate you folks being here. I’d like to suggest that you get unlimited posts. I’d even give up two of mine every day.

  12. DaveyMike says:

    jackg wrote:

    “JST…really isn’t a translation (one needs manuscripts from which to translate). He worked more as an editor than a translator.”

    In the Mormon view, Joseph Smith’s work on the JST (or Inspired Version), the Book of Mormon and the Egyptian papyri were translation/revelation projects regardless of the existence of source documents.

    Mormonism promotes the notion that revelation is, in effect, a translation effort (and vice versa). That is, God has something to say and the prophet receives that truth and translates it and uses his own words (admittedly human and feeble) to proclaim them to the people.

    This reasoning is used to explain why Joseph Smith made revisions (even significant doctrinal changes) to his revelations. He simply didn’t “translate” correctly God’s original concepts into human words.

    Of course, this is not Biblical. Click here for my post on the subject.

    [Hey, DaveyMike, welcome to Mormon Coffee. Thanks for all the input you’ve give so far. We look forward to more. Just a quick note about links. Your web url is active in your user name, so there’s no need for you to post it in the body of your comments. Also, we ask everyone here at Mormon Coffee to provide a summation in their own words of the key arguments used before linking to another site. Check out our comment policy. Thanks. -Mod]

  13. DaveyMike says:


    Very kind words, thank you. But don’t give up any posts on my account. I am the rookie here (and a baby Christian).

    On a lighter note, you wrote:

    “I’m pretty gentile when encountering Mormons firsthand”

    If you are a gentile, then I have become a heretic to Mormons.

  14. germit says:

    FoF: you ask a fair enough question, but you are way off topic, and your post in probably a “dead post walking” Maybe we’ll see that topic again.

    DaveyMike: we post here not only in response to specific questions and posters, but (speaking for myself , at least) also for the ‘lurkers’ who rarely post , but read the entries. I have no idea how many people this represents, but to me they are an important audience. Obviously, the attitudes and content of the LDS participants’ posts direct who I talk to and how, but that’s not my only aim…. hope this helps. GERMIT

  15. Kitty says:

    faithoffathers says:
    “No offense, but why is it that so many ex-mormons turned public critics experienced their epiphany leaving the church through experiences involving sexual sin?”

    I wish I had 10% of anyone’s income each time I have heard this from TBMs. This my dear fofs, is another mormon urban legend made to bolster the morale of the “perfect oriented” mormon. Obviously those who leave must have sinned. Stay away, it is catching.

    One of my favorite Joseph Smith writings is when Smith lets the Savior supposedly talk on his own. This after the Savior visits the Nephites and basically tells them the same stuff from the New Testament. After that Smith has the Savior rambling in Smith-ite fashion. See 3 Nephi 16: 6-20.
    It pretty much stands on its own, but I want to add a big resounding, WHAT?

  16. faithoffathers says:

    This is a personal observation of mine, confirmed so many times it is rediculous. I actually don’t hear this from anybody else in the church. And the truth of the fact is not hard to figure out- a little search on almost all such outspoken critics unfortunately reveals the same details in almost all cases.

    As far as 3 Nephi, those passages sound almost verbatum from the New Testament, but actually include none of the nuances that could relate to a middle eastern, Jerusalem audience. Detailed analyses have shown the sermon is perfectly adapted to a group located in the Americas- differences including money, weather, history, and government. Again, the BOM shows it is much deeper and complex than most recognize.


  17. Jacob5 says:

    If we are going on this subject of words not fitting exactly from one scripture to the next, how about Acts 5:30. Come up with what you will but wasn’t the Lord hung on a cross. But yet you are not going to call the author or translator of the book of Acts stupid are you. I sure wouldn’t. Without going into further precious space I will simply post this link regarding Joseph Smith’s first vision recitals and how there are many different versions written of the same event in the bible without Joseph Smith ever even touching it.
    Yes, I am back folks. It has been a while and I have taken a breather, however I have been watching this blog from time to time.
    Anyway, look forward to posting some new stuff in the immediate future.

  18. falcon says:

    Help me out buddy, I’m missing your point.
    I could have predicted this. Actually set my watch by it. Are you accusing our new exMo poster of something? Mormons just can’t reconcile the fact that someone would leave the Mormon church because they figured out the program’s a fraud. You my friend a bearing false witness by your subtle accusations. You need to repent. And by the way, have you ever had a lustful thought? You’re guilty of violating the whole law if you did. It’s as if you did the act by thinking about it. The Mormon system has no solution for you. Try this, Christ died for us while we were yet sinners. Shed His blood up front and covered us in righteousness when we didn’t deserve it.
    Joseph Smith had an ego totally out of control. He thought himself a prophet of great esteem to the point where he interjected himself in God’s Holy Word. My only question is, did this “prophet”, who wrote the BoM with the help of his magic treasure seeking rock, use it to “correct” the Book of Genesis?


  19. jackg says:


    It is clear from the Bible that we are all sinners, and that we are only deceiving ourselves if we say that we have no sin. Another issue has to do with the Mormon teaching that sins are different in degree, i.e. lying isn’t as bad as adultery, etc. This is a false premise that is not biblically based because a sin is a sin is a sin; you see, when we commit one sin, we are a lawbreaker. When I worked in DOC as an officer, it always humored me how a murderer was at least better than a child molester. In actuality, everyone in there was a lawbreaker. It usually comes to this, though, that whenever Mormons get exasperated they try to diffuse the witness of God’s grace in the lives of newly regenerated folks by this accusation. I am glad you raised this issue because it emphasizes the point that Mormonism does not properly teach grace, and that we must work to earn grace. You see, when a person realizes their sinfulness, realizes that the only thing they could ever merit for themselves is death, realizes that their puny human efforts will never bring them to the point of earning God’s grace, and that they need God’s intervention now, that is when such a person sees their need for Jesus Christ who is grace enfleshed. So, to accuse someone for leaving the Church because they were a sinner reveals a misunderstanding of man’s condition and the Person and Work of Jesus Christ.

    This is off topic, but this is where you brought this conversation. The evidence presented in this post by Sharon confirms the truth about JS, that he was not a prophet of God. Because of JS, the entire Bible for Mormons is suspect, and that JS is more authoritative than God’s word. Hey, it’s your prerogative to believe the teachings of JS et al. So, I’ll continue praying for you, FOF. You have a right to your opinion; and I have the right to confess the mercies and grace of Jesus Christ for sinners such as I.

    Grace and Peace!

  20. germit says:

    To the LDS: could someone answer in plain english for me why exactly the JS ‘translation’ is not considered scripture…or is it ?? Seems like it ISN’T, most of the time. Can someone clear this up? If it isn’t, why isn’t it ??

    Thanks, GERmIT

  21. DefenderOfTheFaith says:

    Just popping in after a few months. Looks like all the "faithful" are still lingering.

    Nice to hear that Ms. Lindbloom has had such a wonderful experience with Genesis (which is the temple from beginning to end….another days topic). She sets the picture of serenity, fulfillment and wonder that I suspect is common when feasting on the Word. Then, it appears, her peace is interrupted by the remembrance of Joseph's Smith addition to the book. Fair enough. But I thought feelings were out of bounds in the realm of truth? I expected to see the whole group correct her, and that how she "feels" about the JS additions should have no bearing on discerning truth. But instead I find nothing but ranting about how Mormons persist in "relying on that special feeling". Isn't that, at least in part, what Sharon has done? with the stance taken here, I could accept if she said she "feels" the JS additions take away from the beauty of the text (which clearly she does). I am bound to accept her feelings as well as her attempted explanation (although I happen to think "fruit of loins" is key in the referenced scriptures). But this group has clearly enough denounced all such "inspiration" as out of bounds in the realm of truth.

    Just looking for some consistency here

    LDS will always rely on the "whisperings of the Spirit" as we read the scriptures, pray, listen to our leaders, do missionary work, etc.

    The Lord said, through JS, that if something wasn't right that we would have a stupor of thought or that we would forget the thing that was wrong. Whether we believe JS was a prophet or not, one thing is for sure: It appears that all of us have not/cannot forget the words (fulfillment of this scripture). Maybe it's because they are not really his words after all.

  22. I didn't get the impression that Sharon was claiming divine inspiration via feelings. And I don't have any problem with an evangelical or Mormon talking about how certain things make them feel.

    As for Smith's addition to Genesis, an addition not rooted in any actual manuscript evidence, it speaks for itself apart from any feelings expressed over it. And the reasons Sharon gave for rejecting it are eyebrow-raising.

    But I'm afraid Sharon might be shooting herself in the foot. In the MRM version of the Gospel of John, it foretells of a man in California starting a ministry to engage the beliefs of Mormonism, and then moving to Utah. This man is our prophet, Bill McKeever. If Sharon rejects Joseph on account of the additions made to Genesis, why does she not also leave the ministry which she serves?

    Double standard indeed.

  23. I didn't get the impression that Sharon was claiming divine inspiration via feelings. And I don't have any problem with an evangelical or Mormon talking about how certain things make them feel.

    As for Smith's addition to Genesis, an addition not rooted in any actual manuscript evidence, it speaks for itself apart from any feelings expressed over it. And the reasons Sharon gave for rejecting it are eyebrow-raising.

    But I'm afraid Sharon might be shooting herself in the foot. In the MRM version of the Gospel of John, it foretells of a man in California starting a ministry to engage the beliefs of Mormonism, and then moving to Utah. This man is our prophet, Bill McKeever. If Sharon rejects Joseph on account of the additions made to Genesis, why does she not also leave the ministry which she serves over McKeever's additions to the Gospel of John? I mean, can a guy like Bill really just write in verses into a book of the Bible and prophesy about himself without looking like a fraud?

  24. Andrea says:

    you can't be serious. The Latter-Day Saint Church is all about coming to Christ. It's part of being a Mormon. I have a strong testimony of Jesus Christ and serving Him. I am doing a research projoect for school and when I come across these "chip-on-the-shoulder" ex-mormons, I can't help but wonder why they have such negative feelings for other
    Christians if they claim to follow Christ themselves. I grew up in the church and was inactive for many years. Do you know what I found out there in the world? Here a little and there a little. It took a few years of being stupid to realize I was wasting my time away from God and His TRUE CHURCH. You can pick it apart if you want to, but is that really helping you toward salvation? The answer is no. May the spirit touch your heart and bear witness as it does, that Joseph Smith was a prophet. Have you read the articles of faith? It talks about believing the scriptures as far as they are translated correctly. So, pray and ask if it's true.

  25. DaveyMike says:


    Praise the Lord that He chooses to give sinners an epiphany "while they are yet sinners" (Romans 5:8).

    However, I agree with you that far too many outspoken critics of the LDS church live their lives inconsistent with God's commandments. We are all sinners (Romans 3:10), but many of these critics openly declare their lack of faith in anything after leaving the church.

    I am sad that they choose to blame God for having been LDS and they replace the church with another set of false teachings or with a lifestyle counter to God's Word. I think they are worse off because of it (Luke 11:24-26).

    That is why I try to seek out former LDS members who have come to Christ by His grace. They are examples to me not because they are perfect but because they have entered into the Lord's rest (Hebrews 4:10-11).

  26. DaveyMike says:

    I know that many Mormons sincerely seek to heed the admonition to come to Christ (2 Nephi 25:26) including my own children who are still LDS. However, Mormonism–by its own definition–teaches a different Christ than the traditional church (JSH 1:19). That distinctiveness was reiterated by President Hinckley in 1998 (click for Church News article).

    The Bible teaches that a correct knowledge of the nature of God is paramount to salvation (John 17:3) and Joseph Smith agrees: "It is the first principle of the gospel to know for a certainty the character of God" (History of the Church, 6:305).

    I appreciate your testimony and hope that I am never guilty of criticizing LDS people for their sincerity nor the experiences which lead them to their faith. But I must put everything to the test (1 Jn 4;1; 1 Thes 5:21) for the sake of my own salvation and preach the true gospel for the salvation of others (Romans 10:10).

Comments are closed.