Royal Skousen has decided the Book of Mormon was written in Middle English and no one's really prepared to argue with him, so let's let it stand.
That raises the question: Why NOT translate to modern English? It's helped in other languages!
Well, there's a lot of arguments on both sides, and I'm accidentally about to make one. Mostly, I just noticed something interesting last Sunday and wanted to share (1 Nephi 2:19, 20, 22):
And it came to pass that the Lord spake unto me, saying: Blessed art thou, Nephi, because of thy faith, for thou hast sought me diligently, with lowliness of heart.If you need a quick reminder, thee/thou/thy are singular and ye/you are plural.
And inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments, ye shall prosper, and shall be led to a bland of promise; yea, even a land which I have prepared for you; yea, a land which is choice above all other lands.
And inasmuch as thou shalt keep my commandments, thou shalt be made a ruler and a teacher over thy brethren.
In other words, Nephi may have a great relationship with God, but there are some things that are only promised to the group. Ye had better keep those commandments if ye want to prosper in the land.
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