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Js And The Accounts Of The First Vision


bluebell

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Short answer?

Simply I believe that Paul's first vision account is a lot more congruent than contradictory than Joseph Smith's first vision which appears to me to have been completely re-written.

The major contradiction in Paul's account is in one version those traveling hear it, in another they don't hear it. But I believe in the original Greek it can be interpreted that they didn't understand not necessarily didn't hear a sound, but bothe accounts attest to seeing the bright light, what wa said to Paul, and Paul's conversion. What the versions agree on:

1. Paul was a persecutor of the Jews

2. the words spoken to Paul

3. Paul being struck with a bright light

4. Paul converting shortly after and becoming a champion of the Christians

Like I said I can accept a little deviation in the story that's an honest translation error, or another author not getting the story right. But to have the first vision go from an Angel, and later transform to God almighty Himself bodily incarnate and Jesus Christ also bodily is more than just a "little deviation", that's completely seperate accounts.

Joseph Smith's contradictions are far more apparent IMO, essentially they contradict themselves in every area of the vision. In the Bible you have congruence on when the event happened, where it happened, and who appeared to Paul. Those are three areas in complete contradiction with Joseph Smith's first vision, not to mention Paul had zero motivation as he hated and persecuted Christians.

That's the long short, this is off the cuff and I'm sure this turns into a 400 post thread full of endless cut and pastes at which point I'll have to bow out since I don't have time to do it.

No this isn't the complaint at all Pantsman. The Complaint is that in Pauls first retelling only he falls to the Ground but when it's retold to the king (You know the guy the whole world falls down before) the story changes... Paul, everyone with him and even the little yellow dog falls down and tremble at the pure awesomeness. In other words the story was tailored to the audience. And almost was purswasive enough to do the Job.

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I could not do justice to the presentation by Matthew Brown in a summary. But here are two small items that may whet your appetite.

1. Several elements of the account of the First Vision which did not appear in the earliest written version were known in non-LDS circles prior to 1832, and those elements were included in the 1838 account. This completely shoots down the argument that certain elements were only added much later.

2. The earliest written account does refer to Heavenly Father. Certain phrases taken in context definitately include Him, although not by name in the earliest account.

There are also other interesting responses to critics. One of the criticisms, that Joseph Smith had joined other churches after being specifically instructed not to do so, is countered with a number of non-LDS witnesses that Joseph claimed no other religious affiliation.

Another is that Joseph Smith did not speak about the First Vision until many years after it occurred.

These are all dcoumented with original sources.

Thanks so much charity-that's great info too.

:P

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I think to try and validate the contradictions of the first vision or at least drastically different tellings of the story ~170 years to the much less troublesome contradictions of Pauls account ~2,000 years isn't helping the cause.

To me the where, when, who, what, and why are all consistent in Paul's telling, they aren't even close in Joseph Smith's, that's the difference maker to me.

Anyway I'm sure most of us have read our apologetics on it, I have my interpretation you have yours, I don't need to beat my chest and shove apologetics down peoples throats that most have read 1,000 times anyway.

It sure speaks to the consistancy of the complainer.

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Short answer?

Simply I believe that Paul's first vision account is a lot more congruent than contradictory than Joseph Smith's first vision which appears to me to have been completely re-written.

The major contradiction in Paul's account is in one version those traveling hear it, in another they don't hear it. But I believe in the original Greek it can be interpreted that they didn't understand not necessarily didn't hear a sound, but bothe accounts attest to seeing the bright light, what wa said to Paul, and Paul's conversion. What the versions agree on:

1. Paul was a persecutor of the Jews

2. the words spoken to Paul

3. Paul being struck with a bright light

4. Paul converting shortly after and becoming a champion of the Christians

Like I said I can accept a little deviation in the story that's an honest translation error, or another author not getting the story right. But to have the first vision go from an Angel, and later transform to God almighty Himself bodily incarnate and Jesus Christ also bodily is more than just a "little deviation", that's completely seperate accounts.

Joseph Smith's contradictions are far more apparent IMO, essentially they contradict themselves in every area of the vision. In the Bible you have congruence on when the event happened, where it happened, and who appeared to Paul. Those are three areas in complete contradiction with Joseph Smith's first vision, not to mention Paul had zero motivation as he hated and persecuted Christians.

That's the long short, this is off the cuff and I'm sure this turns into a 400 post thread full of endless cut and pastes at which point I'll have to bow out since I don't have time to do it.

Something tells me you have not gone through the accounts of the First Vision and really compared them. I did and I found them to be at least as consistent as Paul's accounts or the different accounts of the Resurrection in the 4 gospels. Yes I know Paul's accounts and those resurrections are in the "WORD OF GOD" so they get a pass or get ignored but they really are not any different.

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I saw the 'different versions of the first vision' listed on quite a few bible-believing posters' posts on the other thread and i'm a little disappointed that they have not come on over to explain how they separate paul's different versions and JS's different versions and why paul's don't matter while JS's do...

I'm honestly trying to understand where that seeming contradiction comes into play, but so far, the only conclusion i've been able to come to is that those who are bible-believing (Paul believing maybe is a better way to put it) but critical of the JS first vision accounts only hold that position out of ignorance.

If i'm wrong in my assumption then please tell me why?

:P

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bluebell, I think you are right in your assumptions. Many of the people who make claims and charges are only parrotting things they have read on anti sites. They have no background, have not studied the information, and don't have any original thought to contribute. And they refuse to educate themselves when pointed to information other than their anti source.

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Here is the link. Scroll down to the first vision.

[Matthew] Brown on First Vision

CHARITY: You may be interested in what is said below.

HAMMER: Make sure to check out the brand new draft FAIR wiki articles on First Vision apologetic issues that are designed to supplement the article you have provided a link for. I believe the eight articles listed so far are only the beginning.

Go to the www.josephsmithstudies.com website and the 8 articles are linked right on the front page.

CLICK HERE

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Thanks for that link...

This is very important information, since a consultation of Brother Cannonâ??s writings reveals that precisely twenty-two years earlier he had been teaching in the Juvenile Instructor that Joseph Smith â??had the glorious privilege of beholding the Father and the Son. There is no doubt at all in this text about the precise identity of the two Personages seen by the Prophet Joseph Smith.[3] And, of course, the accounts of the First Vision printed in the Millennial Star (the 1838 official Church history and the 1842 Wentworth Letter) identify the Prophet's visitants as the Father and the Son.

Praise to the man who communed with Jehovah.

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edited to say, I'm sending you a pm, helorum.

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Another issue that seems to come up a lot is that the 1838 account was given 18 years after the First Vision happened to Joseph. Why did he wait so long to offer this account. Yet they completely ignore that it took more years for Paul to write his accounts down and it took many years after the fact for the gospel writers to ink their gospels. Just more selective criticism. Find anything to attack Joseph Smith but pretend it does not exist with the same argument could be used to attack Bible writers.

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Another issue that seems to come up a lot is that the 1838 account was given 18 years after the First Vision happened to Joseph. Why did he wait so long to offer this account. Yet they completely ignore that it took more years for Paul to write his accounts down and it took many years after the fact for the gospel writers to ink their gospels. Just more selective criticism. Find anything to attack Joseph Smith but pretend it does not exist with the same argument could be used to attack Bible writers.

Thats easily answered. JS had a printing press at his disposal. All Paul had was sheep skins and stones. :P

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Another issue that seems to come up a lot is that the 1838 account was given 18 years after the First Vision happened to Joseph. Why did he wait so long to offer this account. Yet they completely ignore that it took more years for Paul to write his accounts down and it took many years after the fact for the gospel writers to ink their gospels. Just more selective criticism. Find anything to attack Joseph Smith but pretend it does not exist with the same argument could be used to attack Bible writers.

I agree that many anti-JS groups do turn a blind eye to these issues when it comes to them and their beliefs.

I don't know where i read it, but the person said that one of the best arguements for understanding how JS could give prophecies that did not turn out as he said they should and STILL be a prophet of God was in a book written by a popular Christian author challenging the atheists same arguements against biblical prophets.

I think it's human nature though to fail to see the forest for the trees when it comes to things we are passionate about (either for or against).

:P

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I think it's also important to note that Paul didn't write even one of the Gospels, Christianity doesn't hang or fall on the accuracy of Paul's first vision, but like I said prior I have no problem accpeting the different accounts in Paul's storybecause nothing is major. Every major facet of Christianity had already been set in the Gospels of Christ and Christ's teachings. With Joseph Smith Mormonism lives or dies on the first vision.

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I think it's also important to note that Paul didn't write even one of the Gospels, Christianity doesn't hang or fall on the accuracy of Paul's first vision, but like I said prior I have no problem accpeting the different accounts in Paul's storybecause nothing is major. Every major facet of Christianity had already been set in the Gospels of Christ and Christ's teachings. With Joseph Smith Mormonism lives or dies on the first vision.

but what is it in the first vision accounts that proves they are all false?

:P

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I think it's also important to note that Paul didn't write even one of the Gospels, Christianity doesn't hang or fall on the accuracy of Paul's first vision, but like I said prior I have no problem accpeting the different accounts in Paul's storybecause nothing is major. Every major facet of Christianity had already been set in the Gospels of Christ and Christ's teachings. With Joseph Smith Mormonism lives or dies on the first vision.

Christianity does rise or fall on the Resurrection account and there is as much inconsistency if not more in the gospel resurrection accounts as there is the JS First Vision accounts. I personally think the whole issue is a bunch of nit picking.

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Christianity does rise or fall on the Resurrection account and there is as much inconsistency if not more in the gospel resurrection accounts as there is the JS First Vision accounts. I personally think the whole issue is a bunch of nit picking.

Tell me about it!

Where there 1, 2 or 3 Angels?

What hour of the day was it?

http://www.sullivan-county.com/identity/res_chart.htm

See what I mean Pantsman about your consitancy? The only reason you beleive what you beleive is because thats what millions have beleived before you.

Whats worse is you are not consitant in why you beleive what you beleive.

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Tell me about it!

Where there 1, 2 or 3 Angels?

What hour of the day was it?

http://www.sullivan-county.com/identity/res_chart.htm

See what I mean Pantsman about your consitancy? The only reason you beleive what you beleive is because thats what millions have beleived before you.

Whats worse is you are not consitant in why you beleive what you beleive.

I believe what I believe because I know it's true, imagine the arrogance of me telling you why you believe what you believe.

I've explained my case clearly, there is no inconsistency on my part at all as I've shown, the discrepancies in the Bible are easily resovlved, and not nearly as major as the differing first vision accounts of Joseph Smith. I have no desire to beat my chest, you have your interpretation I have mine.

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pantsman, how do you explain the fact that non-LDS individuals knew and wrote about the elements of the First Vision contained in the 1838 account which are not explicitly present in the 1832 account? Don't you think that means that Joseph Smith was speaking about those events, even if he chose to emphasize other elements of the vision in the 1832 account?

What is your explanation if you don't believe that?

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I believe what I believe because I know it's true, imagine the arrogance of me telling you why you believe what you believe.

I've explained my case clearly, there is no inconsistency on my part at all as I've shown, the discrepancies in the Bible are easily resovlved, and not nearly as major as the differing first vision accounts of Joseph Smith. I have no desire to beat my chest, you have your interpretation I have mine.

I guess the issue is that you haven't explained anything about your case-only that you have one.

Dr. Steus provided a great link where you can view all nine of the first vision accounts side by side, exactly as they were written-as i've looked through there, i can see no obvious contradictions. I see nothing that makes the different accounts of the first vision any MORE contradictory than the different accounts of paul's vision or of the resurrection.

I've asked you if you could tell me what parts there are that seem so contradictory to you-but you have yet to answer that question-which makes it appear as if you don't really know, except that you've been told such by someone else.

I would think, if this is such an issue with you that you list it as a top five reason not to believe in JS-that you would have some knowledge of it.

Am i asking to much for you to explain where you see the contradictions? Afterall, you told me to start this separate thread so the issue could be discussed.

I'm really not trying to badger you, only understand your point of view...

:P

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I guess the issue is that you haven't explained anything about your case-only that you have one.

Dr. Steus provided a great link where you can view all nine of the first vision accounts side by side, exactly as they were written-as i've looked through there, i can see no obvious contradictions. I see nothing that makes the different accounts of the first vision any MORE contradictory than the different accounts of paul's vision or of the resurrection.

I've asked you if you could tell me what parts there are that seem so contradictory to you-but you have yet to answer that question-which makes it appear as if you don't really know, except that you've been told such by someone else.

I would think, if this is such an issue with you that you list it as a top five reason not to believe in JS-that you would have some knowledge of it.

Am i asking to much for you to explain where you see the contradictions? Afterall, you told me to start this separate thread so the issue could be discussed.

I'm really not trying to badger you, only understand your point of view...

:P

You are badgering me though as I've clearly stated my case, here's the deal simply take all the objections that people have for the first vision accounts without me having to cut and paste it from Wikipedia, you've all heard them one million times, just go on that O.K.? I simply don't care that much, this all stems from another post that asked to list why non-mormons don't believe Joseph Smith. I said "multiple first vision accounts", I had no desire to clarify it with 50 posts and numerous Wiki cut and pastes, frankly I don't know how you people do it all day. If you look at all the threads I posted in about that, my case is perfectly clear.

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You are badgering me though as I've clearly stated my case, here's the deal simply take all the objections that people have for the first vision accounts without me having to cut and paste it from Wikipedia, you've all heard them one million times, just go on that O.K.? I simply don't care that much, this all stems from another post that asked to list why non-mormons don't believe Joseph Smith. I said "multiple first vision accounts", I had no desire to clarify it with 50 posts and numerous Wiki cut and pastes, frankly I don't know how you people do it all day. If you look at all the threads I posted in about that, my case is perfectly clear.

Forgive me-i see no where where you have 'clearly stated your case' on this thread but i understand if you don't wish to do so again.

:P

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The topic came up in another thread of some of the biggest reasons that people have to NOT believe JS was a prophet of God.

One of those reasons that came up a few times was the different accounts he gave of the First Vision.

I've always wondered why people who believe the bible to be the word of God (and therefore believe that paul was called of him and spoke for him) have issues with the different accounts of the first vision but have NO issues with the different accounts of paul's vision of Christ.

So-for those of you who fall under this category (such as pantsman-who's idea it was to start this thread) explain away...

:P

Essentially this is trying to twist the arms of Bible believers to accept JS without dealing yourself with the contradictions. That is know in logic as ad hominem circumstantial. You might also consider the vast difference between contradictions showing up in different books, by different persons, in different circumstances, and contradictions showing up in writings by the same person a few years apart.

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Forgive me-i see no where where you have 'clearly stated your case' on this thread but i understand if you don't wish to do so again.

:P

apology accepted but it is very clear, I have no idea how to say what I want to say n plainer English.

Dan Vogel has a good point, maybe he'll care to debate more. Frankly I find the LDS position to be disingenuous by comparing the two, and think after an honest assessment, you can admit that.

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