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clarkgoble

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  1. While apologists take different views obviously, I think they long thought elements of his environment were in the Book of Mormon. Just that there wasn’t cribbing. That was never thought of the Bible which has always been seen as different by its nature.
  2. New First Presidency

    Thought I addressed this. But more to the point are you saying Uchtdorf talk said it was good that people left? Or that simply they left for understandable reasons? Which is exactly what the above talk said.
  3. New First Presidency

    It’s so odd to me that the founder of Dialog, the person famous for butting heads with Elder Packer particularly over openness to history, the person who first pushed for homosexuality being innate and who was the first to say this in the Ensign, the one GA who publicly criticized those refusing to give marriage certificates to gays, the person who pushed for compromises.... Anyway you get the idea. He’s seen as harsh and uncompromising while the person in the First Presidency who made all the policies and hadn’t done of of the things Oaks did not even hinted at his views being different from Pres Monson is seen as Progressive. I just don’t get it. Thats not a knock on any of them. Just that I earnestly don’t get the projection on Uchtdorf of being unorthodox.
  4. Galileo in the Book of Mormon

    John Gee argues convincingly its geocentric doesn’t he?
  5. Galileo in the Book of Mormon

    Sorry I meant 3 & 4. i.e. the idea that a telescope is necessary for heliocentric models is undermined by ancient heliocentric models. The reasons why geocentric models were more popular was for folk reasons not I think scientific ones. We obviously judge objects from our perspective. Thus any religion targeting the masses will have a geocentric focus due to this phenomenology. However it's not hard to reconcile them in various ways as ancient writers demonstrate. The issue really isn't the science since the Book of Mormon doesn't demonstrate any awareness of the science nor astronomical calculations. (Which isn't to say they were ignorant - just that we can't say much based on the text) I also think you have to be careful when talking about culture. I think you're equivocating there somewhat. You recognize there was heliocentric astronomy in the ancient world but presumably are dismissing it as not being the main view. However you are then turning to early modernism but are playing by different views. i.e. treating the small intellectual class of scientists and philosophers as if they were representative of the broader cultural views. Again while Aristarchus is around 300 BC, the ideas go back much farther at least to the 5th century and possibly older. This view wasn't strictly heliocentrism since both the sun and earth orbit a hidden central flame. I'd note Helaman 12 technically isn't unambiguously embracing either model. It just says if it appears the sun is still God is actually moving the earth. We might assume that's because of a heliocentric view, but it's not clear it is. It could also just be a mythology that sees God tied to the sun and so if God is acting he'd move the earth. Finally I'd note that Helaman seems to indicate a distinction between the cultural view and the author's view. That is they are reporting the sun standing still (likely written referencing Joshua 10:12) but then explaining what really is going on. Again it's not clear who the author of that verse is, so we should be careful in interpreting it.
  6. I still suspect that they'll make some big revisions. I don't think it's worked out well for various reasons. I'd also like to see more leveraging of older singles who volunteer. The age 26 limit and limit to a single mission limit people who might be financially well off and looking to serve. So say six month missions - particularly service missions. Since many may well have been on a mission already they'll also come better trained.
  7. Galileo in the Book of Mormon

    Don't your point 2 & 3 contradict? Also both the time of Helaman and Mormon are well after 300 BC. Also a moving Earth is generally thought to be a view of Pythagorianism well before 300 BC. Finally as I noted beyond the recognition of elements of later European knowledge in their superior astronomy most Mayan records were destroyed so it’s mostly an argument from silence. As we know both heliocentric and moving earth theories were developed independent of telescopes in the ancient world it’s not implausible the Nephites had it for unknown reasons. You also didn’t address it as an expansion to/by Joseph.
  8. Divine Love Is Conditional

    Didn't we discuss this talk extensively here a few months back? Unfortunately the search function here is frustrating to use and I can't find much with it. Anyway I'd say this whole discussion rests on a rather obvious equivocation over love in its sense as action and love in its sense as intention. We use the same word to describe these rather distinct albeit related ideas. I can want my son to succeed and something and do everything I can to help them succeed, yet their success as success depends upon their action as well as mine. If I simply tell them they succeeded even though they didn't then they didn't really succeed. In the same way my love can be outpoured non-stop yet the desired consequences of that love can depend both upon the lover and the loved. To make a rather different example think of spurned love. A person might love a person who doesn't love them. But if love is essentially relational (as we ascribe deep romantic and marital love) then there's a fundamental difference between true love and unrequited love. Effectively the loved acts as a set of conditions on the love. This isn't a small point, by the way. The point both Uchtdorf and Nelson get at tends to be a place where traditional Christianity disagrees with major theologies within Protestantism. Some say justification is imputed. That is because God says we're just we are just regardless of whether our character and behavior has changed. Catholics and easter Christians reject this view of justification. The debate over conditional love really ends up being this debate over imputed justification and grace. As other noted the traditional Mormon way of viewing this is that God loves all of us but the conditional fulfillment of the telos or end of that love rests in our hands not God's. The image used in the Book of Mormon is that God's arm is always outstretched but we have to enter into his embrace.
  9. Galileo in the Book of Mormon

    While heliocentrism in the post-Christian west starts with Copernicus in the ancient world it was also a theory. We know Aristarchus of Samos around 300 BC taught the idea. That's post Nephi of course but we don't really know what ideas were knocking around 600 BC. There's also some complications in neoplatonic theory that while not really heliocentrism do have the earth and sun moving around a different center point. Those views tended to be popular in late antiquity though as well as in the Renaissance. There's some thought the explanation of Fac. 2 may reflect those Renaissance ideas although it's too vague to be sure. With regards to Helaman we don't know if that reflects the writings of that era or Mormon's later views. We also don't know if this view was brought over by Nephi or reflects a new view of later Nephites. While the location of the Nephites is of course controversial, most assume MesoAmerica in some sense. Of course the Mayans of the classic era had the best astronomy prior to the rise of telescopes. They were extremely accurate in their forecasts and descriptions (Venus is predicted to a 2 hour accuracy) although of course most of the records were destroyed by the Spanish. The Mayans proper were geocentric often ascribing to the heavenly bodies divinity, much as in the ANE. While Mayan astronomy was at least ritually geocentric, they did surprisingly know about sidereal intervals which we typically associate with Kepler and heliocentrism. This allowed them shockingly accurate predictions of the orbits of Mars and Venus. It's also worth noting there's only four surviving documents on Mayan astronomy from which all interpretations arise. There are also those who interpret in particular the Dresden Codex as indicating an awareness of heliocentrism. Mainly due to the extremely accurate knowledge of Venus which was how Copernicus came up with his model. Although of course Kepler's periods were what really proved the sun was at the center of the orbits. But the Mayan had most of that as well. Of course the time frame for those documents is long after Moroni. But we really don't know what was believed then. It's conceivable if speculative that the orbits were known early on and the Mayans distinguished between the mythic and ritual place of the planets and the mathematics. Indeed one could even read Helaman 12:15 as making just such a distinction. On the other hand it's completely plausible that this is also an expansion to the text given by Joseph and not actually on the plates. To the points about Ether 6, I'd just point to my discussion at T&S on Jaredite barges.
  10. New First Presidency

    Again, without knowing what the content is, it's hard to say. Consider someone writing a counterpoint to Elder Uchtdorf's talk on Grace saying that Grace only applies to those who have a personal Snuffer like vision of Christ and Uchtdorf is plain wrong on grace. I think we'd agree that might be reason for someone to be at least concerned even if you think ultimately nothing should be done. So without knowing the content of what is said it's impossible to really say much. I think they can but I've seen enough people bragging about lying in such contexts that I frequently wonder if they do. That said, my parents were at the Salt Lake Temple waiting for the endowment to start. The person at the alter said the spirit told them there was someone there who shouldn't be there. They waited and no one left. So they repeated it. This happened four times until finally someone left and they started the endowment. Now perhaps the person in charge of that session knew someone who shouldn't be there. Or perhaps it was the spirit. But such things do happen. Although judging by the movies on the internet, some people still get through. Inspiration can happen but doesn't always happen. The leaders in question have to be listening. On the other hand I'm sure counterfeits have also happened where people because they don't like or trust someone refuse them when they shouldn't.
  11. I confess I don't see that as our tradition, although heaven knows there are "literalists" among us - although it seems far fewer than when I was young. Probably due to the approach of McConkie losing appeal as fewer and fewer have read his books. (That's not a knock on McConkie who I think was regularly deeply insightful - just that there were many people in the 80's and 90's who tended to follow a gospel of McConkie with Mormon Doctrine and a few other works as their scripture) As you point out, I think the evidence is very compelling that Joseph saw scripture as tools with tools liable to be reworked to new settings. However the history of the shift from the Book of Commandments to the D&C is discussed so widely in Church books I tend to think of the that as our tradition. I'd add that Brigham Young pretty well says the same thing. Even during the supposed heyday of "fundamentalism" (say from the backlash to secular views of scripture in the 1930's up through the end of the McConkie era with the rise of the FARMS era) there was constant acknowledgement of seeing through a glass darkly. It's just that there was a rejection of automatic dismissal of scriptures not confirmed by science. That is the assumption that scripture was wrong until proven right was dismissed. Now I certainly favor the more sophisticated hermeneutics we see rising the 1980's and (I'd argue) ultimately triumphing in the 1990's. Just that I think things are complicated.
  12. New First Presidency

    That ultimately is the problem given how many people conflate burden of proof with infallibility. For instance even most "no death before the fall" people I talk with acknowledge fallibility. They just think the number of GAs saying the same thing is compelling reason to think they're right in this instance. I suspect most people accused of "de facto infallibility" are actually just accepting a burden of proof. That is they, like me, give the benefit of doubt to GAs. For those who strongly disagree with GAs or major church positions this then gets labeled unfairly as de facto infallibility. My experience is that no evidence can change the views of people convinced that the masses think GAs are infallible. They're sure and think the burden of proof is on those accused of proving there actually isn't widespread infallibility belief in the Church despite the large number of quotes saying just that. At best I can say that if you're accusing such a wide swath of people of something their leaders tell them isn't true that there ought be some level of evidence required. I think it's also fair, especially if they're to be taken with a grain of salt, to be rather skeptical of such stories. I mean we don't even have the web page under question to see.
  13. Interestingly this is exactly the same argument fundamentalists use against science. If science isn't absolute knowledge with no mistakes why should we trust it?
  14. There's a few papers reportedly coming out that question Barlow on this point. There's not out yet so I can't speak to the strength of their arguments. But I think many think Barlow and people around that time may have exaggerated things somewhat.
  15. Do you mean the footnotes in the 1981 triple combination and 1979 Bible edition? I don't think so although it gets at ambiguity over what we mean by canon. In any case there's pretty compelling reasons to be distrustful of the footnotes and chapter headers. I believe McConkie (who did a lot of the work along with a program running on an early computer I believe) voiced some warnings. I can't find that quote at the moment though. As an interesting aside, Pres. Monson was in charge of the project which started in 1973. So far as I know only the Pearl of Great Price parts are canon although I do wish some of the longer other passages would get added to the Pearl of Great Price. Say the Melchezedek passage or a few others. My personal feeling is that the footnotes (broadly speaking not pointing to the JST) are horrible although perhaps understandable given the technology of the time. I really hope they're working on a replacement. It's worth noting Joseph Smith's journal entry for 2 July 1833 is: "We are exceedingly fatigued, owing to a great press of business. We this day finished the translating of the Scriptures, for which we returned gratitude to our Heavenly Father." I believe Matthew's point was that from 1833 - 1844 Joseph continued to revise texts, such as his famous treatment of Genesis 1:1 in the King Follet Discourse. So in that sense it wasn't complete in that he wasn't finished revising the text. However in the sense of the project commanded by revelation he was finished. So it's one of those phrases again where one has to be careful to unpack the meaning and not equivocate in the terms. It's also worth noting that Matthews pretty well claims the same thing some are seeing as novel with this Clarke commentary. Quoting from his book on the JST. He's here speaking of revisions to the JST manuscripts, not the later revisions from 1833 - 1844 although there are indications he made some modifications to the manuscripts after 1833. You can look at the manuscripts at the Joseph Smith Papers for anyone curious.
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