Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


Book of Mormon is Man-Made
 
LINKS:
 
http://mormonscripturestudies.com/
http://www.realmormonhistory.com/  
http://www.help4rlds.com/
www.mormonthink.com 

THE STORY

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the fastest growing Church in the world. It traces its origins back to 1830 when a young man called Joseph Smith of Palmyra, New York, founded the Church of Christ based on the Book of Mormon which he said he translated from golden plates that he found in a hill by the guidance of an angel called Moroni. Mormon was the pretended author of the Book of Mormon and supposedly died in the fifth century CE. He allegedly abridged plates he had to create the Book of Mormon. The book was translated with magic glasses and firstly three witnesses saw the plates and later eight more were granted the privilege. Smith called out what he saw on the glasses to his secretary who wrote what he dictated down. The Book of Mormon was supposed to have been written in Reformed Egyptian. Smith proclaimed himself to be a Prophet and he brought out several revelations before his assassination by a mob in 1844. He had claimed that the Father and the Son appeared to him in 1820 when he prayed about what Church to join. They told him to join none for they were all abominations and the disciples of these Churches were all corrupt. There is so much religious fraud going on that one or two frauds have to strike it lucky and get away with it. The founders of Christianity and Mormonism struck it very lucky indeed. 

WHAT IS THE BOOK OF MORMON?
 
The Book of Mormon is a scripture that was supposedly miraculously revealed to a man called Joseph Smith in the 19th Century in New York State. He said that God sent an angel to help him find ancient gold plates. When Smith got the plates he said God helped him translate Reformed Egyptian characters into English with the help of magic spectacles called Urim and Thummim.
 
The Book of Mormon does not claim to be another Bible. It claims to be a missing part of our Bible. It is a companion then to the Bible. Members of the Mormon faith say that the Book of Mormon is therefore the word of God.
 
The Bible is false and not divinely inspired so it is impossible then to see how the Book of Mormon could be anything other than a hoax. Also there is solid evidence that Jesus who the Book of Mormon says was a real person who appeared in America after his resurrection never existed and never rose from the dead if he did. 
 
IS THE BOOK OF MORMON THE WORD OF GOD?

Joseph Smith taught that God translated the book through him by means of magic spectacles which was why he said it was the most correct book on earth (History of the Church, 4:461). The articles of faith of the Mormon Church say that the book is the word of God. The book means the whole book. The whole thing is allegedly of divine authorship and God is even claimed to have done the translating.

The book does not claim to be fully inspired which is the main reason why it is best ignored. Nevertheless, it contains prophecies and revelations which it does say are inspired. But the book is certainly a forgery and not from God. First Nephi 19:6 says that mistakes could have been made in the book. Nephi says that he only writes things down if he thinks they are sacred and that if he makes mistakes it is only natural for he is a man. So Nephi is not sure if he is right or not. Mormon chapter 8 says that Mormonís work contains imperfections though he knows of no fault and that whoever condemns the book will be eternally damned. Mormon 9:30, 31 says it speaks from the dead and the son of Mormon, Moroni, says that the future generation that will read his book must not condemn him or his father for their imperfections. God is to be thanked for showing it their imperfections. Joseph Smithís introduction on the Title Page says that if there are faults they are human mistakes and do not justify rejecting the book for the book is of God. This introduction is attributed to the angel Moroni and is divinely inspired and was translated from the golden plates (page 18, An Address to All Believers in Christ). The Book of Mormon never claims to be perfect. It claims to record revelations from God but it never claims to be totally infallible. Moroni even wrote that if he and Mormon had been able to use Hebrew his record would have been better written and clearer (Mormon 9:33).

When the Book of Mormon is not infallible how could Smith be?

Mormon 8:12 commends anybody who will not condemn the book because of its imperfections.

The Mormons might respond that these imperfections are just bad writing style and awkward descriptions and banal language on the basis of Ether 12:23. But Ether was not the author of the Book of Mormon and wrote on different plates. Anyway God would improve the style and so on in the translation.

When the book might be fallible in matters of history and science the way is opened for the Mormons to advance a liberal understanding that the book gives the word of God but is not always factually correct. This helps the Church not to look stupid when the fact that there is no evidence that anything the book says is true becomes too much to bear. It would be a tragedy if the Church began to admit human error in the Book of Mormon for it would do away with many of the evidences against the Mormon Church at a stroke and make it stronger.
 
But when God planned to do a translation through Joseph Smith why could God not get the prophets to write without making mistakes? Jesus appeared among the Nephites and to Mormon and Jesus commanded that some prophecies and things be written down so why didnít he make sure the scriptures were right? If the Book of Mormon is to have the right to be added to the Bible then it has to be perfect for the Bible says true scripture is always factually correct down to the crossed ts when it predicts the future meaning that it is reasonable to expect total perfection. These questions are unanswerable.

2 Nephi 5:32 has Nephi saying he wrote what was pleasing to God but he did not write that he wrote only what pleases God. Any minister would say his sermon despite its imperfections and errors is pleasing to God.

No Book of Mormon coins have ever been found. The Mormons say they used no coins but they would have had for they came from a culture that used them. Mormons respond the Nephites did not use coins. They gave precious metals in exchange for other goods depending on the weight. But this is no help to the Mormons. Alma 11 says that you paid a shiblon for half a measure of barley which shows that if it is not coins we have here it is nuggets or lumps of gold and silver. Nuggets or not they should be as common as lost coins are especially in the battlefields.
 
No Book of Mormon cities have ever been found. Smith believed that the science of his day could prove the book when he wrote these daring things but made the book say it was imperfect just in case.
 
Mormon 7:9 says that anybody who believes the Bible will believe in the Book of Mormon too which is dishonest when the book never claims to be the word of God and claims that the Bible is unreliable. If I should believe in the Book of Mormon because of the Bible then it follows that both are equally full of error. Why? For if the Book of Mormon were infallible and not corrupted like the Bible, then it would be superior to the Bible and we should believe in the Bible where it says the Bible is right. We should make the Book of Mormon the supreme authority. The verse says that if you believe either one you have to believe in the other. The Bible is more believable than the Book of Mormon. We know that some of the places and people in the Bible existed and we do not have this assurance with the Book of Mormon.

1 Nephi 13:40 also says that the Book of Mormon will show the truth of the Bible and restore the many plain and precious things that have been removed from it. If so then why does the Book of Mormon agree with the Christian Church in all essentials and add barely anything?

Mormons say that the Book of Mormon in 2 Nephi 29 has God saying that those who say they have a Bible and need no more Bible when they hear of the Book of Mormon are wrong for if he speaks his words once he can speak them again.  Then God says that it is silly to suppose that God would speak to one nation and not another. This argument fails because God can speak again but may have chosen not to. This argument is trying to say that God cannot do that and must always speak!
 
The Book of Mormon then rejects the idea that the Bible is closed and the Book of Mormon claims to be another part of the Bible.
 
This is about what people say. It makes no comment on whether the Bible is accurate or not.
 
The fact that the Book of Mormon does not pretend to full inspiration proves that any blunders in it could be put down to the lack of divine protection so that the Book can still be believed no matter how many blunders it makes. This is an untenable approach. A book with no or fewer errors would have more authority.

The chapter speaks of the Bible. But the Bible was not called the Bible until well into the first millennium of the Church and this was supposedly written between 559 and 545 BC. Mormons say that God translated the word used by the Nephites as Bible so they didnít know the word Bible.

Verse 10 claims that it is mad to suppose that if there is a Bible that it contains all the word of God for there would have to be some word of God that was not in it. True but that does not prove that there would have to be new scripture or that the missing word would be preserved. The logic God uses here is fallacious. Also the Book of Mormon says there can only be one true Church of Christ and yet in verse 13 it says that the records of the ten tribes of Israel will appear as new additions to the Bible. But there is no evidence for the existence of these records. It does not say how they will come forth which opens the way for any Mormon and especially those ones who believe in the Book of Mormon alone to pretend to false revelations, for the other Mormon scriptures put a bit of a limit on how far would-be prophets would go, and lead the people astray. God is thoughtless isnít he?

The Book of Mormon accepts the gospel account of Christ and the Sermon at the Temple is almost identical to the Sermon on the Mount in the Matthew Gospel. Yet Lukeís version of the Sermon on the Mount is very different and why Matthewís version and not his? The differences between Matthew and Luke show that the gospels themselves do not claim to be giving Jesusí teaching word for word. Even the hardest fundamentalist agrees with that but insists that if the meaning is preserved that is all that matters. Objectively speaking however when the wording differs between Matthew and Luke it indicates that the early Church was careless for you need to watch the wording perfectly in case a mistake is made. Meanings are not enough. Christians boast that it does not matter for the meanings correspond but still the gospels endorsed a dangerous practice for they allegedly used only a small part of what was being said about Jesus which could have led them to misinterpret him when they were paraphrasing him. To paraphrase is to interpret.
 
So if the Sermon at the Temple were very different from both Matthew and Luke it would have a better claim to authenticity going by biblical standards.
 
We know too that the portrait of Jesus in the Book of Mormon is a product of the nineteenth century because it can be proved that the gospel Jesus was not known in the days of Paul and the activities of Jesus in the New World supposedly precede Paul for Jesus was in America in 34 AD according to the Book of Mormon.

The Book of Mormon says that the Bible has been altered. This means the Book of Mormon alone can be considered to be proper evidence for the resurrection of Jesus. The three witnesses should have seen the risen Jesus instead of the angel when they had their vision of the angels showing them the plates. Without seeing Jesus their testimony is no use because it means we have to believe that Jesus rose because they saw a book that said so. But the resurrection is Jesusí great proof that he was the Son of God and the saviour of the world. It is not much of a proof but a failure then in that case.
 
The Book of Mormon gives no provable prophecies or predictions of the future to show that a God who knew the future wrote it. The prophecies in it were largely written after the event. The book predicts that the Jews will return to their land when they believe in Christ. They are back in their land today and they don't!


CONCLUSION
 
The Book of Mormon cannot be taken seriously as the word of God. This is what the facts state. Prophets and Churches come and go but the facts endure forever.

BOOKS CONSULTED

A GATHERING OF SAINTS, Robert Lindsay, Corgi, London, 1990
A MARVELLOUS WORK AND A WONDER, LeGrand Richards, Deseret Books, Utah, 1976
AN ADDRESS TO ALL BELIEVERS IN CHRIST, David Whitmer, Board of Publications of The Church of Christ with the Elijah Message, Lacy Road, Independence, Missouri
ARE THE MORMON SCRIPTURES RELIABLE? Harry L Ropp, IVP, Illinois, 1987
ASK YOUR BISHOP, Ira T Ransom, 317 W 7th South, Brigham City, UT 84302
CHANGES IN JOSEPH SMITHíS HISTORY, Jerald and Sandra Tanner, Utah Lighthouse Ministry, 1965
CHANGING OF THE REVELATIONS, Apostle Daniel McGregor, Church of Christ, Independence, Missouri
GODíS WORD FINAL INFALLIBLE AND FOREVER, Floyd C McElveen, Gospel Truth Ministries, Grand Rapids, 1985
CONCISE GUIDE TO TODAYíS RELIGIONS, Josh McDowell and Don Stewart, Scripture Press, Bucks, 1983
HOW TO ANSWER A MORMON, Robert A Morey, Bethany House Publishers, Minnesota, 1983
JOSEPH SMITH AND MONEY DIGGING, Jerald and Sandra Tanner, Utah Lighthouse Ministry, 1970
JOSEPH SMITHíS BAINBRIDGE NY COURT TRIALS, Wesley P Walters, Utah Lighthouse Ministry, Salt Lake City, 1977
LARSONíS BOOK OF CULTS, Bob Larson, Tyndale, Wheaton, Illinois, 1988
LEAVING THE SAINTS, Martha Beck, Portrait, London, 2005
MORMONISM SHADOW OR REALITY? Jerald and Sandra Tanner, Utah Lighthouse Ministry, 1972
MORMONISM, AA Hoekema, Paternoster Press, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1978
MORMONISM, MAGIC AND MASONRY, Jerald and Sandra Tanner, Utah Lighthouse Ministry, 1988
MORMONISM, MAMA AND ME, Thelma Geer, Calvary Missionary Press, Arizona, 1983
MORMONISM, THE PROPHET, THE BOOK AND THE CULT, Peter Bartley, Veritas, Dublin, 1989
NEW LIGHT ON MORMON ORIGINS, Rev Wesley P Walters, Utah Christian Tract Society, 1967
NO MAN KNOWS MY HISTORY, Fawn M Brodie, Vintage, New York, 1995
SOME MODERN FAITHS, Maurice C Burrell and J Stafford Wright, IVP, Leics, 1988
THE BIBLE UNEARTHED, Israel Finkelstein and Neil Asher Silberman, Touchstone Books, New York, 2002
THE BOOK OF COMMANDMENTS, Church of Christ, Temple Lot, Independence, Missouri, 1995
THE BOOK OF MORMON, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Deseret Enterprises Ltd, Manchester, UK, 1972
THE CASE AGAINST MORMONISM, VOL 2, Jerald and Sandra Tanner, Utah Lighthouse Ministry, 1968
THE FACTS OF MORMONISM ARE STRANGER THAN FICTION, Charles Crane and J Edward Decker, Christian Information Outreach, Kent, 1982
THE HUMAN ORIGIN OF THE BOOK OF MORMON, Wesley P Walters, Ex-Mormons for Jesus, Florida 1979
WHY THE CHURCH OF CHRIST WAS ESTABLISHED ANEW IN 1929?, Church of Christ with the Elijah Message, Independence, Missouri
 
THE WEB
 
THE BOOK OF MORMON WITNESSES
www.exmormon.org/file9.htm
Excellent refutation of the claims of the witnesses of the Book of Mormon

Barry R Bickmore
www.geocities.com/Athens/parthenon/2671/EC.html
 
MORMON SCHOLARSHIP, APOLOGETICS AND EVANGELICAL NEGLECT, Carl Mosser and Paul Owen,
 www.gospelcom.net/apologeticsindex/cpoint10-2.html#mosserowen

BOOK OF MORMON QUESTIONS
www.lds-mormon.com/bookofmormonquestions.shtml

MORMONISM UNVAILED: MORE EVIDENCE THAT IT IS TRUE. Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry
 www.carm.org/lds/unveiled_defended.htm

THE ABRIDGEMENT OF D&C 137
 www.saintsalive./com/mormonism/falseprophetjs/htm

THE BOOK OF MORMON: ONE TOO MANY MíS Stephen Van Eck
 www.infidels.org/library/modern/stephen_eck/toomany.html
 
EGYPTIAN CHARACTERS
www.mormonstudies.com/seer2.htm
This shows that when Smith translated the book of Abraham he invented hieroglyphics where there was a piece missing from the papyri. The characters Smith added make no sense to translators. Yet he translated these imaginary hieroglyphics! His mother and close associate David Whitmer spoke of Joseph copying characters of the gold plates of the Book of Mormon before he translated and that like the Book of Abraham Smith often produced two lines in the manuscript with the translation of a single character which shows that the whole Book of Mormon thing was a hoax.
 
MORMON FARMS
www.xmission.com~country/reason/farms_1.htm
by Jerald and Sandra Tanner. Gathers evidence that indicates that it was possible that Smith was insane and had manic depression.
 
DR CHARLES ANTHON RE AUTHENTICITY OF WRITING SAMPLES ALLEGEDLY COPIED FROM THE GOLDEN PLATES
www.mormonism-web.com/anthon.htm

INTERVIEW OF MARTIN HARRIS
www.xmission.com/~research/about/docum4.htm

COMMENTS ON THE BOOK OF MORMON WITNESSES: A RESPONSE TO JERALD AND SANDRA TANNER
www.mormons.org/response/bom/witnesses_Roper.htm
A ridiculous rebuttal that has been taken into account for this book and refuted.

FACTS ON THE BOOK OF MORMON WITNESSES, PART 1
 www.irr.org/mit/bomwit1.html
Excellent refutation of the reliability of the witnesses to the Book of Mormon
 
THE STOLEN MANUSCRIPT
www.utlm.org/onlineresources/bom_early_problems/goldenbible_stolenmanuscript.htm