Michael D. Rhodes
Michael Dennis Rhodes is an Egyptologist, author, retired Air Force Major, and associate professor emeritus. He retired from Brigham Young University as an associate research professor in the Department of Ancient Scripture.
Prior to beginning his college education, he served in the United States Army (from 1965 to 1971). He earned his BA in Classical Greek from BYU in 1970. He did graduate work in Egyptology at Johns Hopkins University from 1970 to 1973, and at Freie Universitaet Berlin from 1977 to 1978. He earned a BS degree in electrical engineering from the Air Force Institute of Technology in 1982 and his MS degree in physics from the University of New Mexico in 1989. He was in the U.S. Air Force from November 1973 to April 1993.
He was a German and Russian linguist, intelligence officer, software test engineer, software test manager, and chief of software evaluation at Air Force bases in Nebraska, Germany, South Dakota, Utah, and New Mexico. While in the Air Force, he was also an assistant professor of physics in the U.S. Air Force Academy and director of the U.S. Air Force Academy Observatory (1989–1993).
While studying Egyptology, he participated on archeological digs in Giza, Egypt, and Petra, Jordan. He has published on astronomy and gospel-related subjects. He is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Rhodes, Jack Welch, and John Gee visited Hugh Nibley in February 2005 when he was dying. Nibley’s unfinished book, One Eternal Round, needed someone to finish the project. It was Nibley’s magnum opus, an exhaustive examination of Facsimile 2 in the Book of Abraham. During the night after their visit, Rhodes realized he was the one to finish the book. Rhodes had worked with Nibley at BYU in 1993. One of his duties then was the book he was committing to finish for Nibley, as well as other projects. Early the next morning, Nibley passed away.
In addition to co-writing One Eternal Round, Rhodes wrote The Hor Book of Breathings: A Translation and Commentary, and Books of the Dead Belonging to Tshemmin and Neferirnun: A Translation and Commentary. He co-wrote The Pearl of Great Price: A Verse-by-Verse Commentary, Converging Paths to Truth: The Summerhays Lectures on Science and Religion, and The Revelation of John the Apostle. He is one of the editors of Nibley’s second edition of The Message of the Joseph Smith Papyri: An Egyptian Endowment.