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David T

Don Bradley And The Kinderhook Plates

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Even though many critics don't believe that Joseph received divine revelation, nevertheless some of them argue that he translated the KP under the guise of revelation.

And, since members of the Church aren't any more immune at times to jumping to the wrong conclusions about whether the prophet was acting in his capacity as a prophet or as a man, all Don needs to rebut the mistaken conclusions of both critic and Saints in this instance is to show that the KP translation was academic and not revelatory.

I believe he has done so.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

As I said, that depends on how you define a "false prophet."

I define a false prophet as one who either causes or allows other to erroneously believe they spoke to or through God.

Did Don show that Smith had no reason to believe that by offering a partial translation, without making it clear that it a was purely academic effort, that his follows would reach a "mistaken conclusion" about how the translation came about? If not, he certainly hasn't mooted my criticism.

The fact is the plates were take to Smith because he purported to be a prophet who found and translated ancient plates telling the story of ancient Nephites. Smith then identified the person buried with the KP as a Nephite, and offered a translation of the plates, which if true, served to validate his earlier revelatory claims.

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I don’t know why they have such are hard time. It’s quite easy. When apologists determine that he was right, he was acting as a prophet; and when they say he was wrong, he was acting as a man. Wink! Wink!

Apologists can only guess what happened at that time. No different for critics. No one on this forum was there when Joseph was alive. And no one was a fly on the wall of his home. Being human, joseph was right and wrong throughout his life. He was just a guy with a very high calling.

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Did Don show that Smith had no reason to believe that by offering a partial translation, without making it clear that it a was purely academic effort, that his follows would reach a "mistaken conclusion" about how the translation came about? If not, he certainly hasn't mooted my criticism.

Here is my guess. Plates were given to JS. He took the plates, observed them, called for the gael and compared the characters with that book. He came up with a similiarity and made a brief translation. He then puts the plates on the shelf. His followers could make what they may of this. Such is life.

Edited by why me

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Yet again: if Don is right, then Joseph glanced at the KP's, recognised one of the characters, compared that character to the GAEL and reported the meaning of that symbol as recorded in that document, along with his surmise that the plates related to the bones with which they were found. (Note to self: double-check in case I've left out some detail which might enable some hypercritical hypocrite to pounce on it an manufacture an accusation.) It was a preliminary exercise only. Some months later, there is still some talk in Nauvoo about a yet future translation of the KP's. Why yet future? Because Joseph hadn't yet provided one, of course.

Some questions for you.

How does one go about "surmising" that the bones buried with the plates were that of an Nephite?

How does one surmise by matching a symbol on two different artifacts, that the symbol has the same meaning on both artifacts?

How does one surmise by identifying one symbol on the plates which you think refers to a certain person, that the plates don't simply refer to that person, but contain the history of that person?

Most importantly, how does one who goes by the name Onandagus fail to see the obvious connection between Smith's identification of the Nephite buried with the KP and Zelph?

As to Don's broader theory, isn't it just as likely if not more likely Smith pointed to the same symbol to bolster support for his bogus partial translation of the bogus KP, since we know thanks to Will that the GAEL was not a authentic reformed Egyptian dictionary. Surely, if Will knows the Gael was not a dictionary, then so would Smith.

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As to Don's broader theory, isn't it just as likely if not more likely Smith pointed to the same symbol to bolster support for his bogus partial translation of the bogus KP, since we know thanks to Will that the GAEL was not a authentic reformed Egyptian dictionary. Surely, if Will knows the Gael was not a dictionary, then so would Smith.

Who knows. No one was there at the time of Joseph Smith who is now on this forum. However, if Joseph was a conartist and a rather successful one at that, I do not believe that he would have fallen for this fraud. Also, if sidney was in on the book of mormon fraud, I can not see Joseph going it alone with such things as this which may destroy the con.

However, a critic can guess your way and a believer can guess the apologist way. It is a coin toss.

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Some questions for you.

How does one go about "surmising" that the bones buried with the plates were that of an Nephite?

AFAICT, the first and only person to have "surmised" that is you. Joseph apparently surmised that the plates (which were in some accounts reported as being worn by the "skeleton" ) related to the person they were buried with. Not much of a leap there. His interpretation of one character says nothing about anyone being a "Nephite."

How does one surmise by matching a symbol on two different artifacts, that the symbol has the same meaning on both artifacts?

Actually that's about the only "surmise" upon which any attempt at interpreting the questioned artifact could even start; it's what makes reading reading. How does one "surmise" that the word "the" in my post has the same meaning as it does in yours?

How does one surmise by identifying one symbol on the plates which you think refers to a certain person, that the plates don't simply refer to that person, but contain the history of that person?

Again, it's a surmise.

As both Analytics and Xander have admitted in the course of this discussion, Clayton's diary entry is not, and does not purport to be, a word-for-word transcription of whatever it was that Joseph actually said; rather, it represents Clayton's own understanding of what he thought he heard. It is therefore unwise and unproductive to get bent out of shape about specific word choices.

Most importantly, how does one who goes by the name Onandagus fail to see the obvious connection between Smith's identification of the Nephite buried with the KP and Zelph?

There was no Nephite buried with the KP.

As to Don's broader theory, isn't it just as likely if not more likely Smith pointed to the same symbol to bolster support for his bogus partial translation of the bogus KP, since we know thanks to Will that the GAEL was not a authentic reformed Egyptian dictionary. Surely, if Will knows the Gael was not a dictionary, then so would Smith.

That depends upon whether we assume that Joseph was nothing more than a 19th century Jaybear. I think he was better than that. I'm actually quite convinced that he genuinely believed in his claims.

None of which, incidentally, include any claim to the effect that there was any "reformed Egyptian" in the GAEL.

Regards,

Pahoran

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Did Don show that Smith had no reason to believe that by offering a partial translation, without making it clear that it a was purely academic effort, that his follows would reach a "mistaken conclusion" about how the translation came about? If not, he certainly hasn't mooted my criticism.

The only burden that Don bears is to substantiate his thesis--i.e. that the KP was an academic translation. He has done so. He does not bear the burden of explaining away the presumed mistaken conclusions jumped to by certain critics and allegedly some LDS alike. Those who have jumped to the presumably mistaken conclusion are the ones who bear the burden for substantiating their own conclusions.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

Edited by wenglund

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Brother Vogel is correct in suggesting that it isn't always easy for the critics to tell when a Prophet is speaking as such or as a man. This is difficult for them because many of them have divested themselves of divine methods for making such determinations, and thus must rely instead upon the oft highly limited/finite arm of flesh in assessing the things of God.

Even still, there are some man-made methods for drawing a somewhat accurate distinction--and this apart from dis-ingenuously looking to what apologist have concluded (double wink--LOL). There is a fairly consistent pattern to revelatory translations that differ from academic translations. One need but compare the two patterns to what is alleged to have occurred with the Kinderhook plates to find strong evidence of it matching the academic pattern.

Some critics may be dis-inclined to do this because it may not comport with their own criticisms of the Church, but it is available to them nevertheless.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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