Anti-Mormon, Pro-Book of Mormon?

Posted by: Andee / Category: , , ,


Someone just left a comment on the article I wrote this morning about TBM comments. This is what BOMG had to say:

Did you forget the Eight Witnesses who saw AND touched the plates?

Did you forget the nearly 20 witnesses of the dictation process?

Are you aware David, Martin and Oliver refuted what you said in their life times?

Are you aware not a single Mormon Church doctrine is found in the Book of Mormon? If you wish to bash the Mormons, use the D&C or the PofGP.

Consider:

www.whitmercollege.com
www.jsfellowship.com
www.bomchristian.com

Holy shit.

I mean, I don't even know where to start.

For those who don't want to click on the links provided to me, let me give you a little bit of info from one of them...
Whitmer College: Anti-Mormon, Pro-Book of Mormon

David Whitmer (for whom this site is named), was a follower of Jesus Christ, having obtained his testimony from a life of experience and study of the Bible and Book of Mormon. It was the Book of Mormon that showed David the errors of Joseph's church, and his post-Book of Mormon revelations.

Continually accused by the LDS and RLDS for being an "excommunicated apostate," David was neither. Whitmer College establishes these and other truths long obscured.


The other two are similar. I won't go into detail copying and pasting all the information for each one of them. There is no point.

Can I tell you how much I hate the word "Anti-Mormon?" I don't even like "anti-religion." It makes it seem as if I hate all Mormons and I hate all religious people. That isn't true. Most of my friends and family are religious people, and I love them dearly. I believe they are putting their faith and money into ancient fairy tales, but that doesn't mean I am against THEM. Just against the dogma in general.

Just wanted to clarify that.

The people on these websites believe that Joseph Smith went astray, but they still believe in the Book of Mormon. I really don't understand that way of thinking, but hell... I don't understand most religious thinking anymore... so I am the first to admit that my patience for this kind of thing is low.

Here is what I don't understand, BOMG...

You mentioned that there were people who touched the plates. That is actually true from all of the studying and researching I have done about this particular topic. Guess what, though? They didn't see the plates AND touch the plates at the same time. They were simply touching the plates while being covered with a cloth of some kind.

Why was it necessary to cover the plates with cloth? If God and Joseph Smith had nothing to hide, why were they hiding it?

Here is the deal with this way of thinking...

Lets pretend for a moment that the plates were actually real (don't buy it... I think that the things these men touched and assumed were brass plates was actually a prop of some kind to trick people) and Joseph had them in his possession. What I don't get is why God wouldn't WANT people to see the plates? Wouldn't God want as many people as possible to see for themselves that the plates were real? Wouldn't it do God a HUGE favor if scientific studies could now be performed on these plates to authenticate them? Imagine the people who would be converted if this were possible! It makes no sense for a God to want people to believe in him, believe in the Book of Mormon/Bible and then make it so HARD TO BELIEVE.

Instead, we have to just believe this on faith alone. Just like the Bible. There is zero evidence to support any of these stories, yet people are willing to believe them because it makes them feel better about life and death (IMO).

If a God wanted us to believe that the plates were authentic, the information was correct and that we should follow this book, Joseph and the witnesses should have handled things this way (from MormonThink.com... a great place for information).

1. None of the witnesses should have been related to Joseph or each other. Most of the witnesses were either related or good friends. Having unrelated people as witnesses would be far more effective than using your brothers and father.

2. The witnesses should not have already been eager believers. There should have been some skeptics.

3. There should have been no financial motive. Martin Harris mortgaged his farm and invested some $5,000 of his own money into printing the Book of Mormon, so of course he had incentive to 'promote' the book.

4. Each of the witnesses should each have written their own testimony instead of merely signing a prepared statement written by Joseph. If the prepared document wasn't 100% accurate many people would simply sign it anyway as it would be too much of a hassle to have it completely rewritten by hand - especially in the 1800s.

5. The witnesses should have been much more detailed about this amazing event. What did the angel look like? What exactly did he say? How did he speak? There are almost no details provided which can be analyzed and compared. If each witness had simply written their own account and provided significant details then their individual testimonies could corroborate each other.

6. The witnesses should have been interviewed independently immediately after going public. They should have been interviewed the same way police do with witnesses to crimes or that investigators do with UFO cases. Ask questions to see if their stories match; How was the angel dressed? How tall was he? How did he speak?, etc.

7. The witnesses should not have used subjective language and say strange things like comparing seeing the plates with seeing a city through a mountain or using spiritual eyes instead of their natural eyes to view physical plates.

8. The witnesses should not have been gullible people that believed in things like 'second sight', divining rods, finding treasure by placing a rock in a hat, etc. That the Three Witnesses were a gullible sort is illustrated by an incident in July, 1837. Joseph had left on a five-week missionary tour to Canada, only to find on his return that all three of the Witnesses had joined a faction opposing him. This faction rallied around a young girl who claimed to be a seeress by virtue of a black stone in which she read the future. David Whitmer, Martin Harris, and Oliver Cowdery all pledged her their loyalty, and Frederick G. Williams, formerly Joseph's First Counselor, became her scribe. The girl seeress would dance herself into a state of exhaustion, fall to the floor, and burst forth with revelations. (See Lucy Smith: Biographical Sketches, pp. 211-213).

9. All of the witness should have been much more vocal and been interviewed much more often. There are very few interviews done with the witnesses that provide any additional information or corroboration of their statements. You would think that these people, after seeing such a magnificent sight, would spend their time testifying to the world about their experience instead of largely just signing a prepared statement and avoiding interviews by the media.

10. And of course it would have helped had all the witnesses remained loyal to the Church for the rest of their lives instead of having most of them abandon it later on. It doesn't make much sense to leave the true Church of God if you have really received an indisputable witness that it was true.

That doesn't really matter in the long run though. Even if the men in question really touched plates of some kind, doesn't make the information from those plates true. As I mentioned earlier, there is sooooo much against the validity of the Book of Mormon that its laughable. I have shared these examples before, but here they are again...

  • Laban's sword blade was made of steel, long before steel existed.
  • "We did work timbers of curious workmanship." But where did Nephi get the lumber? There are very few trees in the Arabian desert.
  • Nephi used a compass to navigate with about 1800 years before compasses were discovered.
  • Nephi found cows, horses, oxen, asses, and goats and goats when he arrived in the New World in 590 BCE. Yet none of these domesticated animals existed in North America before the Europeans brought them over 2000 years later.

This list goes on and on and on. I encourage you to really think about these facts. If the Book of Mormon were true, why did God make it so hard to believe in? Same goes with the Bible.

Now for the argument that the men I mentioned recanted their stories at one point or another. This actually proves my point. If they said one thing, and then recanted and then went back to their original position on the matter they have proven themselves to be untrustworthy. At some point they lied.
"The sky is red."

"This wasn't true. The sky was blue. Those who believe the sky is red are being taken advantage of."

"I was right the first time. The sky is red."
We can't talk to the witnesses personally and gauge for ourselves if they were telling the truth or lying in the first place. So, since that can't be proven we have to look elsewhere to determine if the information from the Book of Mormon is in fact truth. To do this, we go to science. We compare the information from the book to data and things that can be verified. When we do this, the Book of Mormon comes across as a bunch of crap (cause it is!).

You are willing to place your faith in something without having any evidence. You are trusting the men who make these claims instead of looking at the scientific and historical proof. On one side of the coin we have a group of men who have many reasons to lie for Joseph Smith, or who were conned by him. On the other side we have science, logic, reason and historical evidence that can prove many things in this book false.

I am on the side of science here.

Men lie. Especially when they have something to gain. Money, power, or just to make the people in their lives happy.

Seriously dude... think about it.


14 comments:

  1. Seth R. Says:

    I don't think any of the men gained much by way of money. Power maybe, but not even all that much of that.

    Few quibbles:

    There have been examples of steel implements dated to the Bronze Age. King Tut's tomb for instance, contained a steel dagger dated to that period.

    There is actually a small coastal area on the south end of the Arabian desert that fits the bill perfectly for Nephi's Bountiful. It's positioned about right to match up with the trade routes, and is something of a tropical paradise. Only spot like it on the entire peninsula. And it has trees.

    Nephi never claimed to be using a compass - but rather a miraculous device that pointed where to go by supernatural means.

    Not that any of this is a big deal. But I thought you ought to know.

    As for domesticated animals...

    Haven't researched it and don't care to at the moment. I imagine there's an explanation for it somewhere. But I'll leave it alone at the moment.

    Not trying to pick a fight or convince you or anything. Just wanted to provide information.

  1. Maelstrom Says:

    Cult: n, A small, unpopular religion.
    Religion: n, A large, popular cult.

  1. Andee Says:

    Maelstrom,

    A-fucking-men.

    Right on.

  1. Andee Says:

    Seth,

    You said:

    I don't think any of the men gained much by way of money. Power maybe, but not even all that much of that.

    Wrong.

    They had plenty to gain. Even if they just wanted to make Joseph Smith happy they had something to gain. They were going to sell the copyright to the Book of Mormon and one of these dumbasses mortgaged his home to fund the printing of the BoM. Of course they had something to gain.

    You said:

    There have been examples of steel implements dated to the Bronze Age. King Tut's tomb for instance, contained a steel dagger dated to that period.

    Are you talking about steel that was found in reference to the BoM? If you are not, your argument doesn't help you.

    There is actually a small coastal area on the south end of the Arabian desert that fits the bill perfectly for Nephi's Bountiful. It's positioned about right to match up with the trade routes, and is something of a tropical paradise. Only spot like it on the entire peninsula. And it has trees.

    You are reaching, dude. Big time. You WANT to believe it. I get that.

    You said:

    Nephi never claimed to be using a compass - but rather a miraculous device that pointed where to go by supernatural means.

    Not that any of this is a big deal. But I thought you ought to know.

    I am well aware of what Nephi said. Are you forgetting I was a member of the so-called church? True, the WORD compass was never used, but what you are describing is a compass. Is it not? Face it. Joseph Smith made the whole damn thing up. That is why there are so many things wrong with it.

    You said:

    Haven't researched it and don't care to at the moment. I imagine there's an explanation for it somewhere. But I'll leave it alone at the moment.

    Not trying to pick a fight or convince you or anything. Just wanted to provide information.

    Your information is biased at best. You are making connections that are not there, and you still haven't even touched the domesticated animals yet. Give it a shot.

    Just want to give you some information ;)

  1. Seth R. Says:

    There were actually a couple articles I read about the copyright sale being necessary to protect the LDS Church's rights to the text under Canadian law.

    I'll have to look that up and see if I can find it.

    I should point out, this really just boils down to whether you believe in a God or not.

    If you believe, then stuff like finding a small oasis in Arabia, or crossing the sea with a magic compass, or whatever else makes sense.

    If you don't, it looks silly.

    And that about sums it up.

    I didn't come here to pick a fight Andee. I've already done that with you before and I didn't find it that useful.

  1. Andee Says:

    Seth, they wanted to make a buck. That was Joseph Smith's whole life... scams. Money digging, treasure seeking, you name it. He was a con man.

    Even after Joseph started his church he was caught lying! The kirkland bank? Hello???

    I think people want to make excuses to keep their faith. They are willing to find some small way that their beliefs *might* just be true, even when there is overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

    I'm not fighting. You would know if I was fighting. Believe.

    I didn't find many things in the past useful either. Thats why I moved on.

  1. Seth R. Says:

    Keep in mind we didn't have the FDIC back in 1800s frontier America. And there was a desperate need for capital in the Mormon community - not just for Joseph Smith, but for all the people in that community.

    Almost all of their assets were tied up in land. You can't produce the cash necessary to run a local community just with real estate. A bank to issue legal tender was vital to the continued success of the community.

    Except for a combination of factors and what might be called bad luck, the bank might have succeeded too. It's management and operation was typical of American frontier banks at that time.

    Sure, it looks like a mess by modern standards. But by 1800s standards, it wasn't that unusual of a story.

  1. Andee Says:

    He was a "Prophet of God" Seth.

    Shouldn't a prophet of God be directed to handle things correctly for the one true church?

    There is no excuse for the crimes he committed, and there were a lot of them. Fraud being just one of them.

    You can't call someone a prophet in one sentence and then excuse them from living the same morals standards they expected of their followers.

    He knew what he was doing. I think deep down you know that. This wasn't an "oops!" this was fraud. period.

  1. Seth R. Says:

    As you know, that's not a paradigm of the role of prophets that I share. I don't believe in prophetic infallibility.

    Nor do I think he committed any crimes worthy of me rejecting his role as prophet.

  1. Andee Says:

    So, in your mind you think that God would sit back and watch his chosen one screw things up time and time again for the one true church?

    What sense does that make?

    Basically, you are willing to excuse all of the things he did wrong and still trust in the things he said. He is a proven liar. Many times over. Not just him, either. Other "prophets" lied. Apostles, church leaders. How can you trust a liar?

  1. Andee Says:

    Why would God WANT you to trust a liar?

    Isn't that basically what God doesn't want you to do?

    Not that I believe in one anymore. I certainly don't.

  1. Seth R. Says:

    You know, to this day my dad denies that my mom had to call the bishop to shovel our sidewalk when she was pregnant because he wouldn't do it. And yet I still trusted him.

    And that worked out alright.

  1. Andee Says:

    Yeah, Seth.

    Thats the same thing.

    :/

  1. www.spamlds.org Says:

    Here's a video on the eleven witnesses of the Book of Mormon.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vde2IGoe6Qw

    There appears to be some confusion in the comments above. Some Smith family members were permitted to touch the plates when they were covered by a cloth. However, the three witnesses saw an angel come down, display the plates (along with some other artifacts) and they heard the voice of God bear record that the translation was correct.

    The eight witnesses went out into the woods and Joseph showed them the plates which were sitting on a log or stump. They were permitted to touch, handle, heft,and turn the unsealed pages.

    One group had a spiritual manifestation. The other group had a physical experience with their empirical senses.

    The testimony of both groups is that Joseph had some plates. He got them from somewhere. Although many of the men lost faith Joseph, they never denied that they saw the plates and that he had them.

    No matter what the world says, Joseph Smith had the plates and eleven men saw them.