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Olavarria

Questian 4 The Unbelievers: How do you account for Lehi's Trail and "land of Jerusalem"?

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I am a believer but I thought I would put my two cents anyway.

This is excellent evidence for the BoM, but like all BoM evidence the detractors will simply write it off as coincidence or not good enough.

Stuff like this gives those who have the spiritual testimony of truth physical evidence to support what they already know.

This isn't going to convert someone to Mormonism, that happens through the power of the Holy Ghost that tells someone the message of the Book of Mormon is true.

This might lead someone to think about investigating the Church, but this would most likely not be someone who rejects our Church as true.

Since 1830 the greatest conversion tool in out toolbox is the Book of Mormon, it is compelling evidence that Joseph Smith is a Prophet of God. If someone rejects the Book of Mormon I doubt that there is little evidence that we can bring to the table that they won't reject.

Sorry if this wasn't what you were looking for!

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If you are going to accept this one small piece of evidence for the the BOM you must then be will ing to accept the much more plentiful evidence against the BOM. If you want to be objective you need to look at all the evidence and weigh it objectively.

When examining the accuracy of psychic you must examine all the misses as much as the hits. Only then can you determine the viability of their predictions. The same holds true with anything even the BOM. You must look at the evidence as a whole and then make a determination. If at that point you conclude it is as it claims then at least you have done due diligence and can claim your conclusion is based on knowledge as a whole.

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EbedAsphyxiate.png

If you are going to accept this one small piece of evidence for the the BOM you must then be will ing to accept the much more plentiful evidence against the BOM. If you want to be objective you need to look at all the evidence and weigh it objectively.

When examining the accuracy of psychic you must examine all the misses as much as the hits. Only then can you determine the viability of their predictions. The same holds true with anything even the BOM. You must look at the evidence as a whole and then make a determination. If at that point you conclude it is as it claims then at least you have done due diligence and can claim your conclusion is based on knowledge as a whole.

You must be incredibly knowledgeable on the subject to make a statement concerning the "more plentiful evidence against the BOM." It is my conjecture that since "you have done your due diligence" (else why should you have mentioned it?) that you can either refute the evidence as given in the OP or to provide a list of evidence that is larger than the partial list provided by Brant Gardner HERE. An individual with your stated knowledge of the subject should easily be able to produce a list that has not previously been refuted and can therefore withstand such intellectual criticism that we poor, ignorant and deluded Latter-day Saints are able to muster.

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sometimesaint -

You're right that evidence is not proof, but it can be. Multiple pieces of evidence can lead to proving an argument. And in some cases, a singular piece of evidence is proof enough. But of course it depends on the premises, argument, etc.

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monster -

Yes, I'm sure there are many of us who would be very interested in your plentiful evidnce against the BOM that we should consider. Well, beyond those that have been previously refuted or those that argue that absence of evidence is evidence of absence.

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Miracles are a matter of faith, NOT of "supporting evidence".

Pedro, you asked how we (non-believers) account for these type of historical issues and here it is: we make up any hypothesis that seems more plausible than the other ones and fits more events than the competing explanations. Just as when trying to show that Christ actually resurrected, trying to show evidence of Joseph Smith's revelations being true already assumes what it's trying to show and in doing so fails to realize that the explanation presented is the least likely explanation of them all.

Example: in the video you posted, Daniel C. Peterson says that JS looking at that map seems very unlikely... but being as open minded as possible, isn't it a hundred times more unlikely that JS got a revelation from a super-natural being? Saying JS looked at a map, as unlikely as it will EVER be (if it is), is ALWAYS going to be much more likely than a super-natural explanation of the events... than ANY super-natural explanation. That is, ANY explanation of event X that is not self contradictory, does not break any of the so-called "laws of nature", and fits the events fairly well will ALWAYS be more likely an explanation than one of a super-natural nature.

Recommended readings:

http://www.bartleby.com/37/3/14.html

http://plato.stanfor...tries/miracles/

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facie ad faciem:

Yes, and no. A single piece of evidence is seldom sufficient to establish proof. But when tied to other substantial pieces of evidence it can be presented as a basis for a logical theory. That is why I find the evidences for the BoM quite good.

I don't know as there will ever be proof of any religious book, because of the inherent non-falsifiability of the Supernatural.

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If you are going to accept this one small piece of evidence for the the BOM you must then be will ing to accept the much more plentiful evidence against the BOM. If you want to be objective you need to look at all the evidence and weigh it objectively.

When examining the accuracy of psychic you must examine all the misses as much as the hits. Only then can you determine the viability of their predictions. The same holds true with anything even the BOM. You must look at the evidence as a whole and then make a determination. If at that point you conclude it is as it claims then at least you have done due diligence and can claim your conclusion is based on knowledge as a whole.

I only need to be willing to accept it if, when weighed against what I already know to be true, it fits. I am under no obligation to accept any thing just because you or anybody else make truth claims for it.

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Miracles are a matter of faith, NOT of "supporting evidence".

Pedro, you asked how we (non-believers) account for these type of historical issues and here it is: we make up any hypothesis that seems more plausible than the other ones and fits more events than the competing explanations. Just as when trying to show that Christ actually resurrected, trying to show evidence of Joseph Smith's revelations being true already assumes what it's trying to show and in doing so fails to realize that the explanation presented is the least likely explanation of them all.

Example: in the video you posted, Daniel C. Peterson says that JS looking at that map seems very unlikely... but being as open minded as possible, isn't it a hundred times more unlikely that JS got a revelation from a super-natural being? Saying JS looked at a map, as unlikely as it will EVER be (if it is), is ALWAYS going to be much more likely than a super-natural explanation of the events... than ANY super-natural explanation. That is, ANY explanation of event X that is not self contradictory, does not break any of the so-called "laws of nature", and fits the events fairly well will ALWAYS be more likely an explanation than one of a super-natural nature.

Recommended readings:

http://www.bartleby.com/37/3/14.html

http://plato.stanfor...tries/miracles/

Not when one has had experience receiving revelation for themselves.

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elguanteloko:

It is possible that JS looked at a map. OTOH the maps of the day that JS had any access would be of little/no use.

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elguanteloko:

It is possible that JS looked at a map. OTOH the maps of the day that JS had any access would be of little/no use.

I was under the impression that NHM was a relatively new discovery. One that is far more recent than the first publication of The Book of Mormon. Is this thought incorrect?

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elguanteloko:

It is possible that JS looked at a map. OTOH the maps of the day that JS had any access would be of little/no use.

You are missing the point. ANY explanation claiming a super-natural force is ALWAYS going to be less likely to be true than one that does not appeal to any of such forces. What's more likely: JS received revelation from a super-natural being that told him about an acient civilization or he just got the name from the Bible, changed it a little bit, and placed it on a certain location?

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I was under the impression that NHM was a relatively new discovery. One that is far more recent than the first publication of The Book of Mormon. Is this thought incorrect?

In the OP video Daniel Peterson says there was a map published in 1815 @ 2:50

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It's stunning that Kerry is able to misquote Alma 7:10 at the exact moment the verse is highlighted for the audience. The actual wording, "..he shall be born of Mary, at Jerusalem which is the land of our forefathers,..." is not equivalent to "...born at the land of Jerusalem." The genitive, "land of Jerusalem", is an alleged Hebraism, whereas the trailing "which..." clause is not. Furthermore, "land of Jerusalem", "land of our forefathers", "land of Zarahemla", "land of Nephi", "land of Middoni", "land of Sharon", "land of Enoch", "land of Omner", "land of Heni", "land of Shem", "land of Haner", "land of Hanannihah", "land of Ishmael" etc. is just the way JS spoke.

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EbedAsphyxiate.png

You must be incredibly knowledgeable on the subject to make a statement concerning the "more plentiful evidence against the BOM." It is my conjecture that since "you have done your due diligence" (else why should you have mentioned it?) that you can either refute the evidence as given in the OP or to provide a list of evidence that is larger than the partial list provided by Brant Gardner HERE. An individual with your stated knowledge of the subject should easily be able to produce a list that has not previously been refuted and can therefore withstand such intellectual criticism that we poor, ignorant and deluded Latter-day Saints are able to muster.

No I am not that smart, but I have read a lot and I never said the BOM was not true. I was just pointing out there is plenty of evidence to discredit it. as much to defend it, and yes lack of evidence in this case is not proof but it makes it at least suspect. Could I list a bunch of items that seem to discredit the BOM as an actual historic text, sure I could and so could you. But I am not going to do it because you have already claimed that everything has been answered or refuted to your satisfaction, so therefore you are not open to examination and have made your decision. That is fine and I respect your choice. I simply choose to continue to question until I am satisfied one way or the other.

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In the OP video Daniel Peterson says there was a map published in 1815 @ 2:50

Ah I see that now. Then if we follow your hypothesis we must make assumptions to achieve your result.

We must assume:

  1. The map from 1815 had NHM correctly located to it's present day location
  2. The map or a copy of the map traversed the Atlantic ocean for purposes unknown
  3. The map then must traverse the eastern seaboard or directly from New York Port
  4. The map would then have to travel within the vicinity of Joseph Smith
  5. Joseph Smith would then have to have reason to be exposed to the map in question
  6. The map itself must, by point-in-fact, impress upon Joseph the name of NHM to be remembered years later

Those seem like a lot of assumptions to get JS in contact with the map.

Do you have a proposal to remedy these assumptions?

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Here's what I think of Nahom.

1. The LDS church has not endorsed any proposed location. Until then, claims made by apologists remain personal opinion and speculative.

2. The proposed link between Nahom and the Nihm tribe and altar inscriptions are based on linguistic assumptions:

The exact equivalency of the root letters cannot be assured. It is probable that the term Nahom was spelled with the rasped or fricative Hebrew letter for "h" (het or chet) whereas the name Nihm, both in modern Arabic and in the ancient Sabaean dialect, is spelled with a softer, less audible h sound... One has to assume, it seems to me, that when the members of Lehi's party heard the local name for "the place that was called Nahom" they associated the sound of that local name with the term *Nahom, a Hebrew word that was familiar to and had meaning for them.

S. Kent Brown, Journal of Book of Mormon Studies: Vol.8, Iss.1, pp.66-68

3. A linguistic link to Hebrew is also an assumption, as the Book of Mormon was written in Reformed Egyptian.

4. The name of a tribe does not give us a place

a. Today the Nihm tribe reside about 25 miles north of Sana'a, Yemen. This is not evidence that a location named NHM existed in 600 B.C.

b. The 7th-6th century altar inscription that reads: son of Naw'an the Nihmite is also not evidence that there was a place called NHM in 600 B.C. We have to make another assumption that the tribe was predominant at the time to have its area of residence called after itself and that is was in line with Lehi's travel.

There is no confirmed 600 B.C. placed called NHM.

5. 1 Ne. 17:4 informs us that the journey from Jerusalem to Bountiful took 8 years. The men took wives in the valley of Lemuel (1 Ne. 16:6-7). The women gave birth around Nahom (1 Ne. 17:1). For this reason, in the Journey of Faith DVD, S. Kent Brown deduces that it took them 1 year to reach Nahom from Jerusalem. This means Lehi and company spent the next 7 years crossing the Rub' al Khali nearly eastward to reach Bountiful. If there were a group of Jews traveling down the Arabian peninsula, it's preposterous that they would have abandoned the watering holes of the Frankincense Trail to cross the Empty Quarter. That's suicide, and is a fatal flaw to the Nahom/Bountiful model ignored by apologists.

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Ah I see that now. Then if we follow your hypothesis we must make assumptions to achieve your result.

We must assume:

  1. The map from 1815 had NHM correctly located to it's present day location
  2. The map or a copy of the map traversed the Atlantic ocean for purposes unknown
  3. The map then must traverse the eastern seaboard or directly from New York Port
  4. The map would then have to travel within the vicinity of Joseph Smith
  5. Joseph Smith would then have to have reason to be exposed to the map in question
  6. The map itself must, by point-in-fact, impress upon Joseph the name of NHM to be remembered years later

Those seem like a lot of assumptions to get JS in contact with the map.

Do you have a proposal to remedy these assumptions?

Some of those assumptions are quite silly but this is a good example to show what I've been saying and you apparently haven't bother to read. I'll take ALL of these assumptions and I still am in more solid of a ground that he who takes super-natural assumptions (LDS believers).

clear enough?

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elguanteloko:

That is the conundrum. JS was not educated in what the Saudi peninsula actually looked like. Popular opinion of the time was that it was a giant sand pit. He had no reasonable means of knowing about a Frankincense trail offshoot, a constantly flowing stream leading into the Red Sea. Let alone NHM, and Bountiful. Maps of his day wouldn't have helped. Thus it is no more reasonable to believe he had an extensive background in Middle Eastern geography, than "Angels delivering books".

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Miracles are a matter of faith, NOT of "supporting evidence".

Pedro, you asked how we (non-believers) account for these type of historical issues and here it is: we make up any hypothesis that seems more plausible than the other ones and fits more events than the competing explanations. Just as when trying to show that Christ actually resurrected, trying to show evidence of Joseph Smith's revelations being true already assumes what it's trying to show and in doing so fails to realize that the explanation presented is the least likely explanation of them all.

Example: in the video you posted, Daniel C. Peterson says that JS looking at that map seems very unlikely... but being as open minded as possible, isn't it a hundred times more unlikely that JS got a revelation from a super-natural being? Saying JS looked at a map, as unlikely as it will EVER be (if it is), is ALWAYS going to be much more likely than a super-natural explanation of the events... than ANY super-natural explanation. That is, ANY explanation of event X that is not self contradictory, does not break any of the so-called "laws of nature", and fits the events fairly well will ALWAYS be more likely an explanation than one of a super-natural nature.

Recommended readings:

http://www.bartleby.com/37/3/14.html

http://plato.stanfor...tries/miracles/

Given the normative assumptions (or Grundlage) of Judeo-Christian tradition, the epistemological problem which David Hume and Bertrand Russell have with miracles as the abrogation of the laws of nature or physics seems undeniable and understandable.

However, like Tibetan Buddhism, Mormonism as a theology denies the existence of the miraculous or supernatural, just as it denies the "absurdities of immaterialism." Whether it is because Mormons are socialized to that POV, it remains a fact that the MMPI results for Mormons have to be adjusted to account for such fundamental beliefs -- which differentiate them from the remainder of the U.S. population. Otherwise, Mormons would seem dangerously delusional, when in fact it seems perfectly normal to a Mormon that people might have visions or be actively and powerfully influenced by the Holy Ghost. Even at that, however, since we are prisoners of our senses (according to Hume), and every revelation or inspiration is our own and non-transferrable, any preternatural sources of information are and remain personal..

Yet, here Pedro has presented us with a much different problem. He is, in effect, asking us what does the preponderance of natural evidence show? That is, evidence of the kind which historians usually employ in rationally discussing vaunted historical events. Here is where the videos are powerfully expressive and difficult to refute. For they make hash of the usual claim that there is no physical evidence to confirm Book of Mormon claims.

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Some of those assumptions are quite silly but this is a good example to show what I've been saying and you apparently haven't bother to read. I'll take ALL of these assumptions and I still am in more solid of a ground that he who takes super-natural assumptions (LDS believers).

clear enough?

It's perfectly clear, but you have not answered the question I posed. Thus you remain on the same foundation as anyone else. You have no supporting evidence, nor do you have any alternative hypothesis from which you can eliminate some assumptions. You state that some are quite silly; to which one's are you referring? From my point of view each one is necessary for JS to use such a map to implement NHM into The Book of Mormon narrative--which seems to be something you are unwilling to admit.

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It's stunning that Kerry is able to misquote Alma 7:10 at the exact moment the verse is highlighted for the audience. The actual wording, "..he shall be born of Mary, at Jerusalem which is the land of our forefathers,..." is not equivalent to "...born at the land of Jerusalem." The genitive, "land of Jerusalem", is an alleged Hebraism, whereas the trailing "which..." clause is not. Furthermore, "land of Jerusalem", "land of our forefathers", "land of Zarahemla", "land of Nephi", "land of Middoni", "land of Sharon", "land of Enoch", "land of Omner", "land of Heni", "land of Shem", "land of Haner", "land of Hanannihah", "land of Ishmael" etc. is just the way JS spoke.

Kerry may have made a mistake, but it is still true that the phrase "land of Jerusalem" occurs throughout the Book of Mormon so often that it is understandable that Kerry might extrapolate and reinterpret in his own mind. The phrase does not occur in the Bible. The commonality of such phrasing in the Book of Mormon does not mean that this "is just the way" Joseph spoke. It is equally likely that this was an integral part of Book of Mormon style on the plates (whether Hebrew or Egyptian).

On the other hand, the trailing "which"-clause you mention is equally a Hebraism and occurs quite often in geographical phrases in the Bible. The problem with that generic phrase is that it is not distinguishable from regular English phrasing. The distinctive quality of Alma 7:10 is that it constitutes a geo-political concept which was unknown to Joseph and his contemporaries, i.e., the "land of Jerusalem" as found in Amarna Letters (with an apparent Bethlehem listed in it) as well as at Qumran. It also flies in the face of common knowledge. Joseph should have put in "Bethlehem" if the Book of Mormon were a forgery or some sort of historical novel. Why would he opt to make a fool of himself by claiming that Jesus will be born at Jerusalem?

Alexander Campbell faulted Joseph on that precise problem in his Delusions in 1833. Is it fair to fault Joseph no matter which phrase he uses here?

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