Thursday, August 18, 2011

Historical inaccuracy of the Book of Mormon

A. Mormon archaeological argument that proves the historical accuracy of B of M

  1. The Book of Mormon claims to be a history of ancient peoples inhabiting Central America until 421 A. D.
  2. No one in 1830 (when the Book of Mormon was published) had any idea of the existence of the great cities and ancient civilizations which once inhabited Central America
  3. Archaeologists and other researchers after 1830 confirmed that such ancient civilizations and cities, similar to those described in the Book of Mormon, did exist.
  4. Therefore, this shows that the Book of Mormon is accurate and must have been translated by the power of God as Joseph Smith claimed.

B. Argument #2: The B of M reveals new ideas about the origin of N.A. Indians

1. The following books about the ruins in Central America and the origin of the Indians were in print prior the publishing of the book of Mormon:

  • History of Mexico by Clavigero (2 Vols.), lst English edition in 1787, 2nd in 1807, translated by Charlie; Cullen; A Star in the West, by E. Boudinot, 1816; Spanish Colonies, by Walton, 1810; Researches in Mexico, by A. De Humboldt, translated into English by H. M. Williams, 1814; History of America, by Herrera, 1725; A View of S. America and Mexico, by Niles, 1826; Spanish America, by R. H. Bonnycastle, 1818; European Settlements in America, by Burks, 1808; Bullock's Mexico, 1824; Researches on America, by James H. McCullah, 1817; Archaeologia Americana, 1820; Notes on Mexico, by Poinsett, 1825; The American Geography, by Jedidiah Morse, 1789; History of the American Indians, by James Adair, 1775; The Hope of Israel, by Manasseh ben Israel 1649-1656; View of the Hebrews, by Ethan Smith, 2nd Ed., 825; The Wonders of Nature and Providence, by Josiah Priest, 1824.
  • The books by Priest, Smith, Mannasseh ben Israel & Adair all presented the then popular theory that the American Indians were in reality decendants of Israelites.
  • Regarding this book by Priest: it was copy-righted June, 1824 in the office of R. R. Lansing - the same office in which the Book of Mormon was copyrighted!

2. Smith himself had knowledge of the ancient Indian cultures prior to first seeing the gold Nephi Plates. Joseph Smith's mother, Lucy Mack Smith, said of her son prior to his first seeing the gold Nephi Plates:

  • "During our evening conversations, Joseph would occasionally give us some of the most amusing recitals that could be imagined. He would describe the ancient inhabitants of this continent, their dress, mode of traveling, and the animals upon which they rode; their cities, their buildings with every particular; their mode of warfare; and also their religious worship. This he would do with as much ease, seemingly, as if he had spent his whole life with them.'" Biographical Sketches of Joseph Smith The Prophet and His Progenitors For Many Generations, p. 85 of the original 1853 Edition. (This section is deleted in current editions.)

C. Argument #3: Archaeologists confirm the historical content of the B of Mormon

1. Statements by the Smithsonian Institution and the National Geographic Society:

  • "The Smithsonian Institution has never used the Book of Mormon in any way as a scientific guide. Smithsonian archaeologists see no connection between the archaeology of the New, World and the subject matter of the Book." Official Statement, 1979
  • "Neither representatives of the National Geographic Society nor, to my knowledge, archeologists connected with any other institution or equal prestige have ever used the Book of Mormon in locating historic ruins in Middle America or elsewhere." Dr. Neal Judd

2. Statements made by Mormon archaeologists:

  • "In the first place, the statement that the Book of Mormon has already been proven by archaeology is misleading...As for the notion that the Book of Mormon has already been proved by archaeology, I must say with Shakespeare, 'Lay not that flattering unction to your soul.'" - The University Archaeological Society Miscellaneous Papers, No. 19: Some Views On Archaeology And Its Role At Brigham Young University, Dec., 1960, p9. (This pamphlet is still available from B.Y.U.)
  • "For example, some popular 'Mormon' books show pictures of classic Maya, Inca, and Aztec ruins and attribute them to the Nephites. Scholars are aware that these civilizations postdate Book of Mormon times. Other gross errors include the use of out-dated or otherwise unreliable source materials and the tendency to make every piece of evidence fit neatly into the Book of Mormon picture, whether it belongs there or not." - U.A.S. Newsletter, No. 54, Nov. 19, 1958, p. Z. Dr. Dee F. Green, LDS Archaeologist and the editor of the University Archaeological Society Newsletter at B.Y.U.

Book of Mormon

Holy Bible

No Mormon cities have been located using B of M

Most Bible cities have been located with Bible.

No Mormon names have been found in inscriptions

Many Bible names have been found in inscriptions

Archaeologists have never successfully used the B of M as a guide in locating ancient ruins.

Archaeologists have and still do successfully use the Bible as a guide in locating ancient ruins.

The B of M was translated from "reformed Egyptian". Nothing on the western hemisphere has been found that even remotely resembles Egyptian. Officially "reformed Egyptian" doesn't exist.

The Bible was translated from Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. These languages are taught in today's universities.

There are no manuscripts or "reformed Egyptian" writings available. None of the "gold Nephite plates" exist to examine and compare the English translation of the B of M.

The English Bible is supported by thousands of Greek & Hebrew manuscripts along with at least 2 compete copies of the Bible from 300AD. All manuscripts are available to public at any time.

 


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