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Js And The Accounts Of The First Vision


bluebell

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Yeah. If Joe says to Sue: "I saw Jack and Steve at Burger King and we talked about Jill's party" and then Joe says to Diane: "I saw Jack at Burger King and we discussed Jill's party" are we to assume that Joe is contradicting himself by not mentioning Steve to Diane? Was Joe making a claim to Diane that Steve was not present. An omission of mentioning a fact is not a denial of the fact.

Interesting story, but a really, really poor analogy. Your first misfire is the implication that a visitation by Jesus and God is as consequential as seeing Jack and Steve at Burger King.

How about this. Joe says to Sue "I saw [inconsequential b-list celebrity] Kathy Griffin at Burger King and I said 'Hi' and she said 'Hi' back".

Then, 10 years later, Joe and Sue are talking to Steve about times they have seen celebrities, and Joe says "10 years ago I saw Jim Carrey, Will Farrell, Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise and Kathy Griffin sitting together at Burger King. I said 'Hi', and then we talked for about 30 minutes, and we discussed their methods of acting, their favorite movies, and life in general."

Sue says "Are you sure? At the time, you only mentioned saying 'Hi' to Kathy Griffin." And Joe says "Just because I didn't mention the other people I saw doesn't mean I didn't see them!"

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Interesting story, but a really, really poor analogy. Your first misfire is the implication that a visitation by Jesus and God is as consequential as seeing Jack and Steve at Burger King.

How about this. Joe says to Sue "I saw [inconsequential b-list celebrity] Kathy Griffin at Burger King and I said 'Hi' and she said 'Hi' back".

Then, 10 years later, Joe and Sue are talking to Steve about times they have seen celebrities, and Joe says "10 years ago I saw Jim Carrey, Will Farrell, Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise and Kathy Griffin sitting together at Burger King. I said 'Hi', and then we talked for about 30 minutes, and we discussed their methods of acting, their favorite movies, and life in general."

Sue says "Are you sure? At the time, you only mentioned saying 'Hi' to Kathy Griffin." And Joe says "Just because I didn't mention the other people I saw doesn't mean I didn't see them!"

Okay, that's more cinematic, but, essentially, that's my point.

Best.

CKS

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You are trying to make a pantsman's inconsistency the point, which is an attempt to deflect attention away from his criticism of JS and onto his personal beliefs. A person's beliefs (consistent or otherwise) have no bearing on the validity of their argument. If pantsman can't explain this NT inconsistency, then he has no right to criticize or reject JS based on an argument of inconsistency. It's subtle, but a very common fallacy among Mormon apologists.

I understand you think these two situations are the same, but they are not. As you explain above, you thought a believe was inconsistent with the Bible and wanted to know how they justified that belief on Biblical grounds. That's a legitimate question. But the question about Paul has a different context, which involves a logical fallacy. There's nothing fallacious about requesting someone to defend their interpretations and beliefs. But when the purpose is to deflect criticism of your's, that's a problem.

This all sounds fine, but it totally eliminates the usage of examples which is going to really just leave those who are wrong in their darkness.

If you don't want to be wrong, I guess this would work really well for the anti's

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Dan says:

>It may be "no big deal" to an apologist, but it is to a historian.

Actually, I am quoting Robert McKay, a professional antimormon, who made that comment. JS is trying to reconstruct his "feelings" as a young man. In one account he says that he was looking for the true church, in another account he suspects that they are all wrong.

Whether JS could remember as a young boy such a subtle difference in his feelings a decade or so earlier, even a professional antimormon admitted it was no big deal. Not an "apologist", but a profession disbeliever.

I do understand, Dan, how you grasp at every opportunity to discredit JS. Even the antimormon is willing to step back on this one, but you grasp at every straw. We are not talking about a "historian", we are talking about a "Dan Vogel".

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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.

This is so true. Unfortunately, many are led down the garden path of deception by such sites and their parroting of such sites. It is sort of like a child discovering the taste of new delicious candy. But in this case, the candy can often taste bitter, regardless if the taste seems sweet.

Much better to go to Fair or Farms or to some other prolds sites to get the official side of the story. But what is a shame is that many people decide to believe in the sweetness of their new found candy. And if a person actually believes that the candy is sweet, well...it is sweet, regardless of its true taste.

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Interesting story, but a really, really poor analogy. Your first misfire is the implication that a visitation by Jesus and God is as consequential as seeing Jack and Steve at Burger King.

How about this. Joe says to Sue "I saw [inconsequential b-list celebrity] Kathy Griffin at Burger King and I said 'Hi' and she said 'Hi' back".

Then, 10 years later, Joe and Sue are talking to Steve about times they have seen celebrities, and Joe says "10 years ago I saw Jim Carrey, Will Farrell, Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise and Kathy Griffin sitting together at Burger King. I said 'Hi', and then we talked for about 30 minutes, and we discussed their methods of acting, their favorite movies, and life in general."

Sue says "Are you sure? At the time, you only mentioned saying 'Hi' to Kathy Griffin." And Joe says "Just because I didn't mention the other people I saw doesn't mean I didn't see them!"

One day I visted the White House and spoke with VP Al Gore about global warming.

Oh, did I mention that Pres. Clinton introduced us?

How likely is it that these two sentences would be separated by six years? Not very in my opinion.

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Dan says:

>It may be "no big deal" to an apologist, but it is to a historian.

Actually, I am quoting Robert McKay, a professional antimormon, who made that comment. JS is trying to reconstruct his "feelings" as a young man.

Sorry, I don't know this guy. But he's free to have his own opinion. I have a different one. Besides, you and I know that most anit-Mormons don't have a clue.

In one account he says that he was looking for the true church, in another account he suspects that they are all wrong.

I think there is more to it than that. In 1832, he has already decided from reading the Bible that all sects are apostate. So, his prayer is not motivated by confusion over which church is true and which to join. The question is not asked. And no commandment is give to join none of them. He is worried about salvation, and he is told that all those who have faith in Jesus are saved. Institutional affiliation is unnecessary. The 1838 is dramaticaly different.

It begins with JS moving the 1824-25 (the one that Lucy Smith says resulted in her joining the Presbyterian Church) to 1820 as a motivation to pray about which church to join. (The 1832 account didn't mention the revival.) JS is confused (likely because of his mother's pressure in 1824-25, not 1820), so he prays. Father and Son appear. He asks which church to join and is told to join none of them. He is also told he has a mission. Thus, a personal vision about forgiveness of sins was transformed into a prophetic calling.

Whether JS could remember as a young boy such a subtle difference in his feelings a decade or so earlier, even a professional antimormon admitted it was no big deal. Not an "apologist", but a profession disbeliever.

I don't know what this guy said, but I don't care what he said either.

I do understand, Dan, how you grasp at every opportunity to discredit JS.

I'm not trying to discredit JS. I can't say he wasn't a prophet or didn't have revelations. If all I wanted to do is discredit, I would simply point out discrepencies and leave it at that. But I want to understand JS and why he evolved the way he did.

Even the antimormon is willing to step back on this one, but you grasp at every straw.

So, I'm supposed to pass up an opportunity to glean historical information because to anti-Mormon does? Please, give me a break!

We are not talking about a "historian", we are talking about a "Dan Vogel".

I'm not one for titles, but some people call me a historian. Even some professional historians call me a historian. So, why do you hesitate? If it bothers you, perhaps you could call me an award-wining biographer of JS. :P But I could care less what you call me. My point was that historians (and all those seriously concerned about historical interpretation) are trying to do more than defend or debunk.

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The First Vision account to me is riddled with many problems. First is the inconsistencies within each. If you saw two heavenly personages, regardless of whether they were the most important beings in the universe, such as God and Jesus, or whether they were simply your deceased great grandma and great grandpa I can't imagine you retelling the tale in anyway that would not make it clear that both were there and the 1828 version clearly does not indicate the presence of God AND Jesus as it only mentions 'the Lord'.

The second problem is the number of inconsistencies with others who talk about the time period. Lucy Mack Smith and others clearly indicate that the revival was after 1820, similarly Joseph's stated interest in the Methodists seems to have been documented after 1820, and on top of this few mention Joseph's vision that was acquainted with him during that period even though he says he was hated and persecuted over it(in fact I think William Smith is the only one who knew Joseph at the time that I know of that later mentions it-and it is many years after Joseph's death that he apparently even mentions it). I think that it would take a lot of faith to believe it even if it had the consistency behind it that the Moroni visions statements do(Lucy Mack Smith tells it very close to Joseph's rendition and many of those in Palmyra for and against Joseph make mention or allude to it) but as is it makes it extremely difficult for me to accept.

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The point that this line of argument seems to avoid, rightly or wrongly, is the sheer magnitude of the lacuna that the appearance of the God of this Universe (or this Galaxy, depending upon your belief) failed to be mentioned in JS's initial account.

The incongruity of narrating an event of such incredible proportions inadequately (and, yes, I would hold that any account that failed to mention that the God of the Universe/Galaxy appeared is inadequate) seems a bit too much to be merely accidental.

Or, perhaps, this is evidence that Jesus Christ is considered to be the God of this Universe, without distinction, among LDS, or at least, to JS?

That's the center of the controversy to my mind. A manifestly different being than the Lord, Jesus Christ, appeared--viz., the God of this Universe/Galaxy appeared to JS, in addition to Jesus Christ--but JS neglected to mention such.

Best.

CKS

But what you fail to realize is that we are instructed in the Bible to not give those who can only tolerate milk, MEAT.

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Precept upon precept, Hammer is right. God and Jesus as two seperate beings was a new truth to the American church going public, it was something that would need to be built upon. It was done as not to offend people so much that they weren't even willing to listen to the rest of the message, already choosing in their minds that it couldnt be so based on what they believed and so the rest of the message couldn't be. They were ones who could only tolerate milk and eventually through faith would be able to tolerate the meat as well.

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One day I visted the White House and spoke with VP Al Gore about global warming.

Oh, did I mention that Pres. Clinton introduced us?

How likely is it that these two sentences would be separated by six years? Not very in my opinion.

It really depends upon the circumstances. I have been in conversations where before I finish what I want to say I am cut off by those I am speaking with.

So I have learned to say what is the most critical fact to my conversation, and leave other things, though interesting and self-grandizing for other times when things are more open for it.

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The point that this line of argument seems to avoid, rightly or wrongly, is the sheer magnitude of the lacuna that the appearance of the God of this Universe (or this Galaxy, depending upon your belief) failed to be mentioned in JS's initial account.

His initial account preceded the 1832 version and was a spoken account. This is corroborated by other sources. The 1832 version was different, as is explained in Brown's essay found in the link below. It clears everything up.

The incongruity of narrating an event of such incredible proportions inadequately (and, yes, I would hold that any account that failed to mention that the God of the Universe/Galaxy appeared is inadequate) seems a bit too much to be merely accidental....

You're right. It was anything but accidental. It was intended to emphasize the similarities between his own and Paul's experiences. People, PLEASE click on the link below and scroll down past the BoMormon portion to the subtitle "First Vision." This conversation is going around in circles, when it doesn't have to.

http://www.fairlds.org/FAIR_Conferences/20...al_Stories.html

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One day I visted the White House and spoke with VP Al Gore about global warming.

Oh, did I mention that Pres. Clinton introduced us?

How likely is it that these two sentences would be separated by six years? Not very in my opinion.

Actually, JS's version of seeing the Father and Son began before 1832. See the link above. Furthermore, the chances of not mentioning President Clinton would become very high, if your goal was to write an essay comparing your experience of meeting the vice president to the experience of someone else who met ONLY the vice president. In that context, to mention Bill Clinton would sound like you were bragging. That's the last thing you would want, if you were already being persecuted for mentioning Bill Clinton in the past. By the way, Joseph Smith did mention the introduction "from on high."

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But what you fail to realize is that we are instructed in the Bible to not give those who can only tolerate milk, MEAT.

I don't believe I've ever read that command. Do you have a source? I'm familiar with the Hebrews, by the way.

Best.

CKS

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I don't believe I've ever read that command. Do you have a source? I'm familiar with the Hebrews, by the way.

Best.

CKS

It is in Hebrews. So why ask?

Heb. 5: 12-13

12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.

13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.

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In 1832, JS had already decided from reading the Bible that all Chrstianity was apostate. So, he didn't pray for that reason. He prayed to mercy and forgiveness of sins.

I know every time I pray, I only have but one thing on my mind. Keeps my prayers nice and short and to the point, just like the folks in the XIXth Century.

USU "Stoic as a Cooper Indian" 78

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It is in Hebrews. So why ask?

Heb. 5: 12-13

12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.

13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.

Precisely because I don't read any commands in that passage. Descriptions, yes. But not commands.

Where do you see the "command" you quoted in your earlier post?

Best.

CKS

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Sorry to resurrect a heated thread, but . . .

Joseph Smith himself wrote his first vision accounts in English in America not 200 years ago. We understand the language and the culture. Paulâ??s conversion story was written not by Paul in a foreign language in a different culture almost 2,000 years ago. The resurrection story was written by many different writers in a foreign language in a different culture almost 2,000 years ago.

No doctrines that I know of are based on possibly conflicting details of Paulâ??s conversion or the resurrection accounts.

However, a major doctrine is based on Joseph Smithâ??s account of who he saw, which initially was the Lord and later changed to 2 personages. This is a MAJOR doctrine. Christianity in Joseph Smithâ??s day believed in the Trinity. Interestingly enough, Smithâ??s first account does not contradict the Trinity. Also, the first edition of the Book of Mormon (1830) does not contradict the Trinity but supports it. Then changes are made to the Book of Mormon, and the first vision account changes as well. Now Jesus and God the Father are 2 personages and Mormonism is anti-Trinity.

Why did Joseph Smith initially support the Trinity and then change?

In my opinion this is crucial stuff.

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Sorry to resurrect a heated thread, but . . .

Joseph Smith himself wrote his first vision accounts in English in America not 200 years ago. We understand the language and the culture. Paulâ??s conversion story was written not by Paul in a foreign language in a different culture almost 2,000 years ago. The resurrection story was written by many different writers in a foreign language in a different culture almost 2,000 years ago.

No doctrines that I know of are based on possibly conflicting details of Paulâ??s conversion or the resurrection accounts.

However, a major doctrine is based on Joseph Smithâ??s account of who he saw, which initially was the Lord and later changed to 2 personages. This is a MAJOR doctrine. Christianity in Joseph Smithâ??s day believed in the Trinity. Interestingly enough, Smithâ??s first account does not contradict the Trinity. Also, the first edition of the Book of Mormon (1830) does not contradict the Trinity but supports it. Then changes are made to the Book of Mormon, and the first vision account changes as well. Now Jesus and God the Father are 2 personages and Mormonism is anti-Trinity.

Why did Joseph Smith initially support the Trinity and then change?

In my opinion this is crucial stuff.

A Better related question is... Why did the Bible initially not support the Trinity and then was later changed to support it?

http://www.bible-researcher.com/comma.html

So your statement that doctrine is not effected by textual/story variants is foundationless.

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Matthew 27:38...

Two bandits were crucified with him, one on his right and the other on his left. The passers-by wagged their heads and jeered at him...even the bandits who were crucified with him taunted him in the same way.

Mark 15:27...

Two robbers were crucified with him, one on his right and the other on his left. The passers-by wagged their heads and jeered at him...even those who were crucified with him taunted him.

Luke 23: 32....

There were two others with him, criminals who were being led out to execution; and when they reached the place called The Skull, they crucified him there, and the criminals with him, one on his right and the other on his left...One of the criminals hanging there taunted him: 'Are not you the Messiah? Saver yourself, and us." But the other rebuked him: 'Have you no fear of God? You are under the same sentence as he is. In our case it is plain justice; we are paying the price for our misdeeds. But this man has done nothing wrong. And he said, 'Jesus, remember me when you come to your throne.' Jesus answered, 'Truly I tell you: today you will be with me in Paradise.'

John 19:18

...there they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, and Jesus in between...

All 4 describe the crucifixion of the two miscreants.

Two say they taunted Jesus just like the rest of the rabble.

One says a miscreant taunted him, but the other showed pity and faith.

One is silent on the conversation.

A seemingly minor discrepancy, but one on which important Christian doctrine is built and Mormon doctrine is criticized....Luke's account.

So, which is right? Why couldn't the apostles get the story right?

Bernard

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Sorry to resurrect a heated thread, but . . .

Joseph Smith himself wrote his first vision accounts in English in America not 200 years ago. We understand the language and the culture. Paulâ??s conversion story was written not by Paul in a foreign language in a different culture almost 2,000 years ago. The resurrection story was written by many different writers in a foreign language in a different culture almost 2,000 years ago.

No doctrines that I know of are based on possibly conflicting details of Paulâ??s conversion or the resurrection accounts.

However, a major doctrine is based on Joseph Smithâ??s account of who he saw, which initially was the Lord and later changed to 2 personages. This is a MAJOR doctrine. Christianity in Joseph Smith's day believed in the Trinity. Interestingly enough, Smithâ??s first account does not contradict the Trinity. Also, the first edition of the Book of Mormon (1830) does not contradict the Trinity but supports it. Then changes are made to the Book of Mormon, and the first vision account changes as well. Now Jesus and God the Father are 2 personages and Mormonism is anti-Trinity.

Why did Joseph Smith initially support the Trinity and then change?

In my opinion this is crucial stuff.

I think you make some great points (the best arguement that i've heard so far of why accounts with similar 'problems' are treated differently).

I don't agree on your conclusion though that JS supported the doctrine of the Trinity at first. I disagree because we know that JS told people, prior to 1832, that he saw God AND Christ in his first vision.

The idea that two separate and distinct personages (God the Father and Christ) visited JS in his first vision wasn't something that was not present and then showed up later-it was something that had been spoken of BEFORE the written 1832 account and AFTER the 1832 account-but which, for reasons unknown, was not spoken of in the specific 1832 account itself.

So, it wasn't that it was 'initially' only the Lord and then changed-it seems that it had always been about TWO personages, but that the 1832 account does not speak of the visit in those terms.

:P

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Matthew 27:38...

Two bandits were crucified with him, one on his right and the other on his left. The passers-by wagged their heads and jeered at him...even the bandits who were crucified with him taunted him in the same way.

Mark 15:27...

Two robbers were crucified with him, one on his right and the other on his left. The passers-by wagged their heads and jeered at him...even those who were crucified with him taunted him.

Luke 23: 32....

There were two others with him, criminals who were being led out to execution; and when they reached the place called The Skull, they crucified him there, and the criminals with him, one on his right and the other on his left...One of the criminals hanging there taunted him: 'Are not you the Messiah? Saver yourself, and us." But the other rebuked him: 'Have you no fear of God? You are under the same sentence as he is. In our case it is plain justice; we are paying the price for our misdeeds. But this man has done nothing wrong. And he said, 'Jesus, remember me when you come to your throne.' Jesus answered, 'Truly I tell you: today you will be with me in Paradise.'

John 19:18

...there they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, and Jesus in between...

All 4 describe the crucifixion of the two miscreants.

Two say they taunted Jesus just like the rest of the rabble.

One says a miscreant taunted him, but the other showed pity and faith.

One is silent on the conversation.

A seemingly minor discrepancy, but one on which important Christian doctrine is built and Mormon doctrine is criticized....Luke's account.

So, which is right? Why couldn't the apostles get the story right?

Bernard

What is the important Christian doctrine you feel is at stake here? I don't know of any doctrine based on the others crucified with Jesus.

Johnâ??s silence on this issue is not a contradiction. This gospel chooses not to include this detail - we donâ??t know why.

The gospels probably were not written by the apostles but by a disciple of the apostles, so it would be Matthewâ??s account but not necessarily penned by Matthew.

Hebrew writers of Bible times had different literary conventions than we do today. They were not concerned with chronological narration or precise citation. They thought differently. We have been greatly influenced by Greco-Roman thinking - we like exact details and chronological narration. Are you going to fault Jewish NT authors for not writing according to your standards?

Luke was Greek and a gentile. Perhaps his Greco-Roman (and not Hebraic) thinking is evidenced by the added details of the others crucified. Lukeâ??s account does not necessarily contradict Matthew and Markâ??s account since the others crucified could have initially insulted Jesus.

But, again, no doctrine is based on the two crucified with Jesus. The important issue is that Jesus was crucified - all gospels agree on this.

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What is the important Mormon doctrine you feel is at stake here? I don't know of any doctrine based on the others crucified with Jesus.

Not seeing the forest for the trees...

"Today you will be with me in Paradise"

Johnâ??s silence on this issue is not a contradiction. This gospel chooses not to include this detail - we donâ??t know why.

Joseph Smith didn't include some details either. So whats the problem?

The gospels probably were not written by the apostles but by a disciple of the apostles, so it would be Matthewâ??s account but not necessarily penned by Matthew.

Many of the accounts weren't written by JS too. Thanks for getting those out of the way.

Hebrew writers of Bible times had different literary conventions than we do today. They were not concerned with chronological narration or precise citation. They thought differently. We have been greatly influenced by Greco-Roman thinking - we like exact details and chronological narration. Are you going to fault Jewish NT authors for not writing according to your standards?

The question really is... "Are you going to fault a Backwoods 3rd grader for not writing according to yoyur standards"?

Luke was Greek and a gentile. Perhaps his Greco-Roman (and not Hebraic) thinking is evidenced by the added details of the others crucified. Lukeâ??s account does not necessarily contradict Matthew and Markâ??s account since the others crucified could have initially insulted Jesus.

Then you are admiting that there is an "apparent contradiction"?

But, again, no doctrine is based on the two crucified with Jesus. The important issue is that Jesus was crucified - all gospels agree on this.

Oh contrary... quite a major one is... "Today you will be with me in Paradise", drives right to the core of the doctrine.

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I think you make some great points (the best arguement that i've heard so far of why accounts with similar 'problems' are treated differently).

I don't agree on your conclusion though that JS supported the doctrine of the Trinity at first. I disagree because we know that JS told people, prior to 1832, that he saw God AND Christ in his first vision.

The idea that two separate and distinct personages (God the Father and Christ) visited JS in his first vision wasn't something that was not present and then showed up later-it was something that had been spoken of BEFORE the written 1832 account and AFTER the 1832 account-but which, for reasons unknown, was not spoken of in the specific 1832 account itself.

So, it wasn't that it was 'initially' only the Lord and then changed-it seems that it had always been about TWO personages, but that the 1832 account does not speak of the visit in those terms.

:P

Where is the evidence that Joseph Smith did see 2 personages in his first vision? Why would he neglect to include this in his first account? It doesnâ??t make sense to me that he saw 2 personages but he would write that he saw one. I canâ??t think of a reason to explain that.

How do you explain the changes made in the 1830 BoM - changes it seems from a Trinity view to a non-Trinitarian view? And Alma 11:44 still sounds like a Trinitarian view.

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Where is the evidence that Joseph Smith did see 2 personages in his first vision? Why would he neglect to include this in his first account? It doesnâ??t make sense to me that he saw 2 personages but he would write that he saw one. I canâ??t think of a reason to explain that.

How do you explain the changes made in the 1830 BoM - changes it seems from a Trinity view to a non-Trinitarian view? And Alma 11:44 still sounds like a Trinitarian view.

You are aware of some facts about the 1832 account arnt you?

1) It was a rough draft and never published.

2) Others where telling the first vision story as missionaries prior to the 1838 publication, some even as early as 1831 or ealier?

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