Even something like the Fall of Adam and Eve, which appears to be a failure and a tragedy, turns out to be part of God’s plan of happiness. Lehi’s narrative might make sense if we eliminate the commandment to multiply and replenish the earth. Men act for themselves, they are free. To be faithful is to trust that we can do otherwise than we’ve always done. I think what complicates this discussion for me is that the Nephites have a bifurcated notion of death: the first death (temporal death) and the second death (spiritual death). Alma 12 contains no trace of Lehi’s ontology of opposites as a necessary stage for agency to occur. Any any rate, Clark’s reading of Genesis is probably considered novel in that the tradition preceding him tends to view knowledge of good and evil as discernment or the ability to distinguish, or judge between good and evil or judge good from evil, rather than the ability for man to declare, in his own eyes, what is good and what is evil, an element that Clark would argue makes the narrative work, and functions as the very thing that makes Adam and Eve like the God who declares to man what is good and what is evil. Lehi is couching the phrase as if they telos of man is joy, but given everything Lehi has built theologically, this seems to be only one half of the equation. 2 Nephi 2:25 Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy. Isn’t this just redundant? It has become customary to use the word Jew to refer to all the descendants of Jacob, but this is a mistake. His interpretation will not allow him to see this as obedience. 1) I think we are always making assumptions with the text. And perhaps for the first time. I misunderstood your comment. 2 Nephi 2:25 “So… do you understand what the tree and the candy bars mean?” our teacher asked us. The phrase in StL’s words “God hath given unto you a knowledge and he hath made you free” could be seen as a re-visioning of the Fall, one that sees transgression in terms of blessing/opportunity/opening rather than straight-cut sin. I’ve take two different rounds of antibiotics and both times I recovered, only to immediately relapse. In Alma 42:16, 18 and 22 the same idea of “punishment” being “affixed” and interestingly, just like in 2 Nephi 2:10 the passive voice is used (no specific indication of who is affixing the punishment). 2) And the Messiah cometh in the fullness of time that he might redeem the children of men from the fall. In my view, the fact that both the resurrection and the atonement are both brought about in and through Christ does not justify eliminating the fact that the Nephites use the terms atonement and resurrection to mean different things.