Hugh Nibley: Pros & Cons (Mostly Pros)


-Great at debating non-latter-day saints about the validity of Joseph Smith, The Book of Mormon, etc. He was appalled when he met with other scholars who didn’t believe in the literal 1st Vision of Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon as history of real people, etc.

-Brilliant analysis of scripture, antiquity, the Egyptian temple endowment, early Christianity, the world of the near east, the teachings of Brigham Young, Abraham, and many other topics.

-He was a good steward of his time and talents, and often toiled late into the night searching out the mysteries of God.

-Wasn’t emotional in his teaching method, but had a lecture style which delivered a lot of information without being slow about it.

-Nibley longed for Zion. He powerfully rebuked the Babylon culture which we saints so often support. He asked his bishop permission to live the law of consecration.

-He had a large family.


-Leaned toward socialism, “free lunch”, etc.

-Taught the flood of Noah was only local

-Taught pre-Adamic people lived, that Adam evolved from lower lifeforms, believed in evolution

-Espoused the view of Meso-American Book of Mormon geography.

-Often had long writings on tangents and only put his opinions hidden toward the end.

-May have touted his own wisdom in his rambling on about sources, siting scholars, etc.



I find his works very useful if one has the discernment to reject his false ideas, and hold to the truths he taught. Someone as brilliant as he was should have seen through the falsehoods of evolution, and it is to his shame that he believed scholars over God’s word on that account. It is incumbent upon every intelligent thinker to rise above the false liberal doctrines of our time. He remains to me a beloved teacher, but I think he should not be worshipped as we have a tendency to worship scholars in the church rather than using  personal revelation to understand the mysteries of God. Nibley is one to be imitated in most of his views and approach.

2 thoughts on “Hugh Nibley: Pros & Cons (Mostly Pros)

  1. My husband read most all of Nibly’s works to me. I have these books still. I’m 80. He didn’t teach what you are saying here. Hrumph. You took words out of context.

    1. I know for a fact he taught a local flood, and that he taught Neanderthals. He also taught the rainbow was before the flood (but there are scientific reasons why it would not have been…) Believe me I’m a big Nibley fan and am indebted to him for many teachings, but I want to point out that people should be careful about some of his liberal views, and I want to push the idea that we shouldn’t “worship” scholars by thinking them beyond reproach in everything.

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