As a natural parser, I have looked closely (minutely, with dictionary in hand) at JSH 1:19 to try to understand what it actually says, and I can say with confidence that I have never read a more concise yet comprehensive description of the apostasy and its practical effects than that verse. Contrary to what many have claimed, both inside and outside the Church, it is quite measured and focused - and brilliantly precise. I have read lengthy treatises on the topic, by Mormon scholars and by Protestant theologians (though the Protestant theologians obviously didn't use the word "apostasy"), and in all their writings I have not once read as powerful and comprehensive a treatise as I see in that one small verse.
He who wrote it was an intelligent and articulate but not classically educated man, so I choose to believe he was summarizing and quoting deity.
Perspective and Time
14 hours ago