THE BOOK OF MORMON: LIKELY SOURCES…
Since the Book of Mormon did not spawn from divine sources, it behooves us to determine its origin.
Although it’s fascinating to speculate on the View of the Hebrews, The Late War, and a host of other texts surfacing (thanks to the digital era), we need look no further than three sources: Joseph Smith’s life experiences/19th century events, The Old Testament, and the New Testament.
Regarding the former, Dan Vogel has done a masterful job presenting the case in “Joseph Smith: The Making of a Prophet.” This text is free to view at: http://signaturebookslibrary.org/joseph-smith-the-making-of-a-prophet/
For biblical evidence of plagiarism, I have determined to present an exhaustive on-line comparison, which is also free and available at: http://realbookofmormon.org/likely-sources/
Because of the unabashed “Isaiah” insertions, we are all familiar with this stolen text in identifying the influence of the Old Testament in the Book of Mormon. However, were you aware that Jerald and Sandra Tanner documented more than 2,500 instances of New Testament influences? What makes this particularly significant is that the “Isaiah” passages can be tracked back (mostly) to when Lehi left Jerusalem. The presence of New Testament parallels is problematic; especially when it comes to anachronisms.
My initial task, is to review each passage in the Book of Mormon (OM/PM texts) against the entire New Testament; to find ‘3+ word string’ matchings.
I’ve posted my findings through 1 Nephi 7 thus far. Each verse has its own .pdf. I estimate this project will ultimately generate about 8,000 pages of data.
Once completed, I’ll move on to the Old Testament.
After that? We’ll have to see, as there seems to be no shortage in parallels, and there will be even more many years down the road.
SCIENCE FICTION and RELIGIOUS FICTION
The world of science happily embraces works of fiction. In many cases, elements of sci-fi writing help perpetuate true scientific ideas, and in other cases, help the progress of new theories. All done (proudly) in the name of science, and without leading the reader into believing it’s something that it’s not.
Isn’t it time for the Book of Mormon to enter the realm of ‘Religious Fiction’ instead of being touted as an historical document? There is absolutely NO science-based evidence to give the text an iota of historicity.
There has got to be a way, given the lack of physical evidence, via a reputable secular organization, to have the Book of Mormon permanently labeled by society as “Religious Fiction,” so that our children, indeed everyone to come after us, can easily dismiss this book as historically inaccurate.
I don’t have a problem with it being a philosophical text. And although there are fewer inspirational verses in it than other ‘more accredited’ religious works, it certainly can be a force for good in the lives of some people.
“Having Faith in Something Does Not Make It True” (Virgos Merlot). Let’s find a way to rid the world of the historical lie of the Book of Mormon, and put it in it’s proper place: Religious Fiction.
WHY SEND OUT MISSIONARIES THEN?
“Brigham Young expressed his frustration by stating that he did not ‘care about preaching to the gentiles any longer.’ Indeed, he stated, paraphrasing Lyman Wight, ‘Let the damned scoundrels be killed, let them be swept off from the earth, and then we can go and be baptized for them, easier than we can convert them.’”
~Brigham Young via Lyman Wight, JS Papers – Administration-Council of Fifty, “Record,” 11 March 1845~
A SENSE OF BETRAYAL COMES AFTER ALL ONE CAN DO TO MAKE SENSE OF IT
Many years ago – before the internet was really born, I sat next to my lovely wife and watched her cry. She had asked me at odd times through our marriage, why I doubted the church? Most of the time we did not talk about it – it was too painful to discuss. I can remember moments where my entire family sat in a room – all trying to persuade me I was wrong. I had my own intellectual arguments and gut feelings, yet nothing you might call substantial or concrete…. no evidence, just a different opinion on certain doctrines and policies. Everyone thought ‘I’ was the problem. She was a very beautiful, loving and kind person to me – regardless of the worry I must have caused her. If she was still alive now and asked me the same question, she would still cry, but at least I’d have an avalanche of facts available.
In those days members would say to me: “You think too much.” The truth is, I did not think enough, or I should never have joined. Over decades, the burden of doubting and trying to soldier on became so very exhausting. I wanted so much for it to be true (I do not know of any Ex Mormon who wanted and hoped it was false), so when I still hear GA’s call people like me lazy, lacking in faith, deficient in tenacity, endurance, patience or spirituality…. and to cap it all: prideful, I feel so bloody angry!
Right from the start of my church life (at 18) I would regularly go out after dark in local woods where I lived to pray; always vocally and on my knees (with poly bags under them). Over the years I have had some long agonizing petitions and soul wrenching conversations with God. In later years I still continued this practice, except I reverted to going to remote locations near home and would sit in my car to pray. It grew into a form of meditation, where I asked for nothing – only talked about how I felt, cried and offered praise back. The strength and sustaining I felt from this was just unparalleled.
…… A wedge was forming in my soul between God and the church. The equation was changing – the relationship was shifting, I no longer needed to affiliate or equate God WITH the church – the two had separated. Slowly, ever so slowly, I gained a certain confidence within myself to trust what I was feeling – my own gut revelation, if you like. So when I began to assert a stronger opinion to those in priesthood leadership, I noticed a change – in them. Somewhere beneath the surface of kindly faces, white shirts and dark suits, was a harder line – a harsh uncompromising dogmatism, which, if crossed, or provoked, would rise to the surface. Then I saw the other face; the face that is soulless. The Church is bogged down with procedure, rules, conditions, rigidity, dogmatism, compliance and morbid guilt. They talk of Christ and then so often proceed to deal with you as if He did not exist. Sometimes their God can feel so beautiful and you really want to believe.
Sometimes you so desperately want to return to that soft cotton wool emotion of thinking, “you know” it is true, because that feeling is so reassuringly peaceful. I came to realize I COULD NOT TRUST those kind of emotional whisperings, without becoming fundamentally dishonest inside. I am a man who found huge poetic beauty in Mormon scripture. On this basis alone, my divergence proves something was seriously wrong. It is rather like being in love and adoring a woman, yet leaving her regardless. I should have found every justification for staying – not deserting.
40 REASONS WHY I FEEL BETRAYED:
- Blood atonement
- B of M Witnesses confess to NOT actually seeing and feeling plates, angels etc.
- Early magic, spiritualism, Invented vision, invisible plates,
- Character of prophets and other leaders
- B of M problems (all evidence against it)
- Sources for B of M now found
- Creation (7000 years since death)
- Doctrinal contradictions (stupid teachings and mothballed ideas of prophets)
- Secrecy and deliberate lies
- Temple endowment
- Book of Abraham + other translation failures
- Outright racism in disguise
- Corrupt and dishonest Kirtland Bank fiasco
- Tithing – corrupted in its interpretation and application
- No financial transparency
- DNA proof B of M narrative is false
- Lack of power in priesthood, failed predictions, no revelation
- The promise that the Church would never be led astray
- Smith’s life and conduct
- Restoration of Priesthoods – not as described – retrospective claims inserted later
- Changing Doctrines
- Changing Endowment
- Rewritten and retro invented History
- Corrupt prophets
- Discredited claims and beliefs
- The methods of ascertaining truth by the church are totally inadequate
- Greedy, money soaked Corporation – fronted by a church
- Misogyny, cloaked in the patronizing pretense of esteem
- Biblical myths, like the flood with Noah’s Ark – creation timeline
- First Vision claim not credible – inserted later to bolster Smith authority at time of widespread apostasy, even of the 12 apostles
- Smith’s 3 heavens is actually bloody awful and NOT merciful. It reveals ‘separation’ by default, unless you prove ‘worthy’ to men playing God. There is a powerful level of anxiety and fear, due to variations in conformity by their family members, classified as ‘unworthy’ of the Celestial kingdom.
- Unfulfilled prophecy by Smith in the bucket loads
- Current Gay policy punishing children – the church pretends it is protecting children, which is another way of saying that their possible baptism and Gift of the Holy Ghost would have had NO effect upon any child, to guide and protect them?!! Instead, they leave each child to feel terribly isolated, alienated, unworthy, guilty and unwanted – compared to their peers. It was presented as a Revelation from Jesus Christ. My God – what a load of shit… if you believe that, you will believe anything! “Whosoever hurts one of these little ones, it would have been better for him…. “
- Hoffman forgeries which show prophets are NOT seers and have tried to buy and suppress information.
- Kinderhook plates nonsense
- Leadership succession totally devoid of guidance and sinister
- Church Essays themselves, are evidence (if you ever wanted it) of how the church tries to excuse its way out of all responsibility for its own sins and wrong doing.
~Anon. FB Post – 12 September 2017~
GREEN FRIENDS: THE ELUSIVE TEXT IN MORMON 8:5
Occasionally, I get questions about the ‘green text’ in the ‘Book of Mormon Comparative’ and ‘The Handwritten Book of Mormon.’ I explain their use in these tomes: “During type-setting and while attempting to secure a Canadian copyright for their work, Oliver Cowdery exchanged the PM with the OM at the printer’s office so he could travel with the PM. Consequently, the OM was utilized during the type-setting of Helaman 13:17 through Mormon 9:37. Accordingly, these passages in the printed 1830 edition reflect favorably with the OM version. Although thousands of modifications were made to the entire handwritten text by the printers of the 1830 edition, there are a few instances where certain words differ from the PM to the 1830 edition; likely to have been from the non-extant portions of the OM in these few chapters.”
In the books, the verse has the word “Friends” in green. The OM is not extant. The unedited PM reads “but I have not I have none”, and Oliver Cowdery ‘later’ inserted two words to make it read “but I have not and ore I have none”. So why the green text “Friends?” Royal Skousen does not address this in “Analysis of Textual Variants of the Book of Mormon,” nor is it referenced by him in his “Earliest Text” volume. John S. Dinger does not address this in “Significant Textual Changes in the Book of Mormon” either. My copy of the 1830 edition Book of Mormon doesn’t read this way!
…The plot thickens…
On page 532 of the 1830 Book of Mormon, shown on the Joseph Smith Papers site (http://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/book-of-mormon-1830/538) this same text reads “but I have not. Friends I have none…” This begs the question: Why is it not in my copy of the 1830 Book of Mormon? The 1830 edition of the BOM was constantly evolving during printing. Indeed, a friend once speculated that “there may be as many different versions of the 1830 edition as there are original copies still in existence.” Could the word “Friends” have been a part of the (now destroyed) OM? Was this variety in the JS papers a mistake John Gilbert made during typesetting? Evidently the church is convinced of the latter, as well as the Oliver Cowdery edit of the PM, since the current version reads “but I have not; and ore I have none…”
~Dan Wees, 13 September 2017~