“8) O the wisdom of God, his mercy and grace! For behold, if the flesh should rise no more our spirits must become subject to that angel who fell from before the presence of the Eternal God, and became the devil, to rise no more. 9) And our spirits must have become like unto him, and we become devils, angels to a devil, to be shut out from the presence of our God, and to remain with the father of lies, in misery, like unto himself; yea, to that being who beguiled our first parents, who transformeth himself nigh unto an angel of light....”
Much of the literature written about the writing of and alterations in the Pentateuch have been the result of the work of the higher critics in the mid-twentieth century. Margaret Barker, a Methodist scholar who has made a life-long study of recovering the theology of the First (Solomon’s) Temple, has argued that the reforms of Josiah may have been part of a larger movement by an amorphous group of priesthood, royalty, scribes and theologians whom she calls “deuteronomists” who were writing and altering books of the Old Testament for their own theological and political ends, much as Nephi described in 2 Ne. 13 and in several of Joseph Smith's personal statements which may be found in Fowles, The Farm Boy Does It Again, pp. 84-85. In this she is consistent with Moses 1:41 where the Lord tells Moses that a day would come in which the people "shall esteem my words as naught and take many of them from the book which thou shalt write...."