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Meeting the prerequisites & thereby attaining the promise of Moroni 10:4


Have you met the prerequisites? Do you believe in Nephites?  

19 members have voted

  1. 1. Please choose the statement that most closely resembles your position

    • I’m LDS, I achieved all 5 prerequisites, and I believe Nephites existed
      7
    • I’m LDS, I achieved all 5 prerequisites, and I don’t believe Nephites existed
      7
    • I’m LDS, I’m not confident I achieved all 5 prerequisites, and I believe Nephites existed
      2
    • I’m LDS, I’m not confident I achieved all 5 prerequisites, and I don’t believe Nephites existed
      0
    • I’m not LDS
      3


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1. Read the Book of Mormon

2.  Ask God

3. With a sincere heart

4. With real intent

5. Having faith in Christ

Failure is not an option, if you believe Moroni.  First, you must read.  Next, you must follow with prayer while meeting his remaining 3 prerequisites.  Then the truth of the Book of Mormon will be manifested to you.  Full stop.

Therefore if the truth is not manifested, the reason is as plain as the nose on your face: One or more of the prerequisites were not met.  There is no alternate possibility.  "It’s very simple"—as President Trump is fond of saying in his press conferences.

5 possible ways to fail, and only 5.  So here is a question:  With LDS Church growth stalling and 70+% of millennials going inactive/leaving the LDS Church by age 20 (courtesy of Mormonleaks), which of the 5 do you think represents the greatest challenge?  Or are they all equally challenging?  Or do you think it's some combination of them that present difficulty?

And while we’re on the question, how exactly does one go about achieving the last three prerequisites?  Would any LDS seriously admonish an investigator to read the Bible first in order to attain “faith in Christ” prior to attempting the Book of Mormon?

--Erik

_____________________________________________

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.

--H.L. Mencken

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2 hours ago, Five Solas said:

........................  "It’s very simple"—as President Trump is fond of saying in his press conferences.

:pirate:  Yes, our dear leader.

2 hours ago, Five Solas said:

............................. So here is a question:  With LDS Church growth stalling and 70+% of millennials going inactive/leaving the LDS Church by age 20 (courtesy of Mormonleaks), .......................................

So "LDS Church growth is stalling and 70+% of millennials are going inactive or leaving the Church by age 20"?  Sounds like Trumpian "fake news," but maybe I'm just poorly informed and cynical..

Whatever the case, have you met with the 5 prerequisites?  What was the result of your sincere prayer?  You know that Mormon missionaries regularly ask people to do that, don't you?  What is your estimate of that challenge, seeing that it is also based squarely on New Testament theology?

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But wait! There’s more!

Quote

3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts

We should also note that this promise was directed at his brothers, the Lamanites, but I suppose it applies to all who read it, at least that is how it has come to be understood..

Quote
Now I, Moroni, write somewhat as seemeth me good; and I write unto my brethren, the Lamanites; and I would that they should know that more than four hundred and twenty years have passed away since the sign was given of the coming of Christ.
  2 And I seal up these records, after I have spoken a few words by way of exhortation unto you.

 

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4 hours ago, Five Solas said:

With LDS Church growth stalling and 70+% of millennials going inactive/leaving the LDS Church by age 20...."

So? At one point all but a few of Jesus’s followers left him. At the time of his death, only a handful remained. The number of Saints in the end times will be few, according to Nephi. In 1978,  Elder Neal Maxwell prophesied of this happening today. This extended quote more than adequately addresses your heart-felt concerns about our Church membership numbers.

Quote

Make no mistake about it, brothers and sisters, in the months and years ahead, events are likely to require each member to decide whether or not he will follow the First Presidency. Members will find it more difficult to halt longer between two opinions......

Your discipleship may see the time when such religious convictions are discounted. M. J. Sobran also said, “A religious conviction is now a second-class conviction, expected to step deferentially to the back of the secular bus, and not to get uppity about it” (Human Life Review, Summer 1978, pp. 58–59).

This new irreligious imperialism seeks to disallow certain opinions simply because those opinions grow out of religious convictions. Resistance to abortion will be seen as primitive. Concern over the institution of the family will be viewed as untrendy and unenlightened.

In its mildest form, irreligion will merely be condescending toward those who hold to traditional Judeo-Christian values. In its more harsh forms, as is always the case with those whose dogmatism is blinding, the secular church will do what it can to reduce the influence of those who still worry over standards such as those in the Ten Commandments. It is always such an easy step from dogmatism to unfair play—especially so when the dogmatists believe themselves to be dealing with primitive people who do not know what is best for them—the secular bureaucrats’ burden, you see.

Am I saying that the voting rights of people of religion are in danger? Of course not! Am I saying, “It’s back to the catacombs?” No! But there is occurring a discounting of religiously based opinions. There may even be a covert and subtle disqualification of some for certain offices in some situations, in an ironic irreligious test for office.

If people, however, are not permitted to advocate, to assert, and to bring to bear, in every legitimate way, the opinions and views they hold which grow out of their religious convictions, what manner of men and women would we be?

Our founding fathers did not wish to have a state church established nor to have a particular religion favored by government. They wanted religion to be free to make its own way. But neither did they intend to have irreligion made into a favored state church.

Notice the terrible irony if this trend were to continue. When the secular church goes after its heretics, where are the sanctuaries? To what landfalls and Plymouth Rocks can future pilgrims go?

If we let come into being a secular church which is shorn of traditional and divine values, where shall we go for inspiration in the crises of tomorrow? Can we appeal to the rightness of a specific regulation to sustain us in our hour of need? Will we be able to seek shelter under a First Amendment which by then may have been twisted to favor irreligion? Will we be able to rely for counterforce on value education aided in school systems which are increasingly secularized? And if our governments and schools were to fail us, would we be able to fall back upon and rely upon the institution of the family, when so many secular movements seek to shred it?

It may well be that as our time comes to “suffer shame for his name” (Acts 5:41), some of that special stress will grow out of that portion of discipleship which involves citizenship. Remember, as Nephi and Jacob said, we must learn to endure “the crosses of the world” and yet to despise “the shame of it” (2 Ne. 9: 18Jacob 1:8). To go on clinging to the iron rod in spite of the mockery and scorn that flow at us from the multitudes in that great and spacious building seen by Father Lehi, which is the “pride of the world” (1 Ne. 11:36)—is to disregard the shame of the world. Parenthetically, why, really why, do the disbelievers who line that spacious building watch so intently what the believers are doing? (See 1 Ne. 8:33.) Surely there must be other things for the scorners to do. Unless deep within their seeming disinterest. … Unless. …

If the challenge of the secular church becomes very real, let us, as in all other relationships, be principled but pleasant. Let us be perceptive without being pompous. Let us have integrity and not write checks with our tongues which our conduct cannot cash.

Before the ultimate victory of the forces of righteousness, some skirmishes will be lost. Even in these, however, let us leave a record so that the choices are clear, letting others do as they will in the face of prophetic counsel.

There will also be times, happily, when a minor defeat seems probable, but others will step forward, having been rallied to rightness by what we do. We will know the joy, on occasion, of having awakened a slumbering majority of the decent people of all races and creeds which was, till then, unconscious of itself.

Jesus said that when the fig trees put forth their leaves, “summer is nigh” (Matt. 24:32). Thus warned that summer is upon us, let us not then complain of the heat!

Have I come today, however, only to add one more to the already long list of special challenges faced by you and me? Not really. I have also come to say to you that God, who foresaw all challenges, has given to us a precious doctrine which can encourage us in meeting this and all other challenges.

https://www.lds.org/ensign/1979/02/a-more-determined-discipleship?lang=eng

 

Edited by Bernard Gui
  • Like 1
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4 hours ago, Bernard Gui said:

In 1978,  Elder Neal Maxwell prophesied of this happening today. This extended quote more than adequately addresses your heart-felt concerns about our Church membership numbers.

I love prophets!

  • Like 2
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8 hours ago, Five Solas said:

1. Read the Book of Mormon

2.  Ask God

3. With a sincere heart

4. With real intent

5. Having faith in Christ

Failure is not an option, if you believe Moroni.  First, you must read.  Next, you must follow with prayer while meeting his remaining 3 prerequisites.  Then the truth of the Book of Mormon will be manifested to you.  Full stop.

Therefore if the truth is not manifested, the reason is as plain as the nose on your face: One or more of the prerequisites were not met.  There is no alternate possibility.  "It’s very simple"—as President Trump is fond of saying in his press conferences.

5 possible ways to fail, and only 5.  So here is a question:  With LDS Church growth stalling and 70+% of millennials going inactive/leaving the LDS Church by age 20 (courtesy of Mormonleaks), which of the 5 do you think represents the greatest challenge?  Or are they all equally challenging?  Or do you think it's some combination of them that present difficulty?

And while we’re on the question, how exactly does one go about achieving the last three prerequisites?  Would any LDS seriously admonish an investigator to read the Bible first in order to attain “faith in Christ” prior to attempting the Book of Mormon?

--Erik

_____________________________________________

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.

--H.L. Mencken

I had to check “I am not LDS” as the statement that most closely resembles my position because considering your OP (so much flawed logic and lack of facts), the other four choices are sheer nonsense! 😊

But I believe Nephites existed, FWIW.

As to your other question, I had faith in Christ before ever reading the Bible, but I believe the Bible influenced the culture and its artifacts that notionally informed me of Him. Likewise, I suppose children can believe Nephites existed even though they haven’t yet read the Book of Mormon.

So what is your real question?

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9 hours ago, Five Solas said:

1. Read the Book of Mormon

2.  Ask God

3. With a sincere heart

4. With real intent

5. Having faith in Christ

Failure is not an option, if you believe Moroni.  First, you must read.  Next, you must follow with prayer while meeting his remaining 3 prerequisites.  Then the truth of the Book of Mormon will be manifested to you.  Full stop.

Therefore if the truth is not manifested, the reason is as plain as the nose on your face: One or more of the prerequisites were not met.  There is no alternate possibility.  "It’s very simple"—as President Trump is fond of saying in his press conferences.

5 possible ways to fail, and only 5.  So here is a question:  With LDS Church growth stalling and 70+% of millennials going inactive/leaving the LDS Church by age 20 (courtesy of Mormonleaks), which of the 5 do you think represents the greatest challenge?  Or are they all equally challenging?  Or do you think it's some combination of them that present difficulty?

And while we’re on the question, how exactly does one go about achieving the last three prerequisites?  Would any LDS seriously admonish an investigator to read the Bible first in order to attain “faith in Christ” prior to attempting the Book of Mormon?

--Erik

_____________________________________________

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.

--H.L. Mencken

Bless your little heart.

Let it go; you are not LDS and don't need to be. You have found your big ol' church in Seattle and you are ecstatically happy.  Rejoice in that and just let all of the bad things fade away.  You don't need to go to the wicked old, dying, dead, morally corrupt LDS Church ever again.  Let it pass from your mind to be never thought of again.  

Have fun in your new church. Embrace it for what it is and never think again about it.  After all, God did not make it, God did not restore it to the earth so no need for prophets and apostles.  Heck, you don't even need authority for anything! If you got the feeling you got the authority to do whatever you want.  Better yet, you are saved.  No need to think of sin again regardless of your actions, choices, or sins.  What a great deal!  Just walk down the aisle and say Jesus over and over again and, viola, saved.  Hold tight to the easy path and never let it slide away from you. 

Edited by Storm Rider
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1 hour ago, Storm Rider said:

Bless your little heart.

Let it go; you are not LDS and don't need to be. You have found your big ol' church in Seattle and you are ecstatically happy.  Rejoice in that and just let all of the bad things fade away.  You don't need to go to the wicked old, dying, dead, morally corrupt LDS Church ever again.  Let it pass from your mind to be never thought of again.  

Have fun in your new church. Embrace it for what it is and never think again about it.  After all, God did not make it, God did not restore it to the earth so no need for prophets and apostles.  Heck, you don't even need authority for anything! If you got the feeling you got the authority to do whatever you want.  Better yet, you are saved.  No need to think of sin again regardless of your actions, choices, or sins.  What a great deal!  Just walk down the aisle and say Jesus over and over again and, viola, saved.  Hold tight to the easy path and never let it slide away from you. 

"By their fruits you will know them"  :)

 

  • Like 2
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2 hours ago, Storm Rider said:

Bless your little heart.

Let it go; you are not LDS and don't need to be. You have found your big ol' church in Seattle and you are ecstatically happy.  Rejoice in that and just let all of the bad things fade away.  You don't need to go to the wicked old, dying, dead, morally corrupt LDS Church ever again.  Let it pass from your mind to be never thought of again.  

Have fun in your new church. Embrace it for what it is and never think again about it.  After all, God did not make it, God did not restore it to the earth so no need for prophets and apostles.  Heck, you don't even need authority for anything! If you got the feeling you got the authority to do whatever you want.  Better yet, you are saved.  No need to think of sin again regardless of your actions, choices, or sins.  What a great deal!  Just walk down the aisle and say Jesus over and over again and, viola, saved.  Hold tight to the easy path and never let it slide away from you. 

I am non LDS..reading the Book of Mormon again....would you say this to me?  My answer to the poll was just not LDS...but I met those 5 standards and received a very real witiness to me on a hill in prayer...I cried and felt the forgiveness of my sins..what does one say to me?  That I lost the spirit??  That as a good person..I live in the dark? Or did the omission of church elders deceive me and disturb me enough to just question..and to question..separated me from the church...but not the Savior.

Edited by Jeanne
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You need another category. I’m formerly LDS, met all five of your prerequisites, but never received the expected confirmatory spiritual witness. I don’t believe Nephites existed. 

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2 hours ago, Jeanne said:

I am non LDS..reading the Book of Mormon again....would you say this to me?  My answer to the poll was just not LDS...but I met those 5 standards and received a very real witiness to me on a hill in prayer...I cried and felt the forgiveness of my sins..what does one say to me?  That I lost the spirit??  That as a good person..I live in the dark? Or did the omission of church elders deceive me and disturb me enough to just question..and to question..separated me from the church...but not the Savior.

Hello Jeanne,

No, but I sense that your posts are not hyper-critical; or maybe it is the constant attacks that come from the questioner.  It just gets so tiresome.

I have never equated the Savior with the Church.  For some reason I have always seen them as different.  From a very young age I had a testimony of our Heavenly Father; as I got older my testimony grew and I came to know the Savior.  I have never sensed any kind of relationship with any of the prophets; ancient or modern.  I may have some favorites, but these are just affinities for a person and nothing more.

What I find repeatedly in us, humans, is the unrealistic expectation of not only common disciples of Jesus Christ, but all of his servants.  I have studied religion most of my adult life and I have never come close to a gospel that "fits" like the Restored gospel of the Savior.  The fact that God used a man such as Joseph Smith to restore the gospel is not of significant importance to me.  To know that he was human and in need of forgiveness is no more surprising than me getting up in the morning and seeing myself in the mirror and knowing to the center of my utmost being that I am also human and in desperate need of forgiveness.  If God forgives me then I am completely certain that he forgives everyone else - including his servants.  

Your questioning was nothing more than questioning.  The problem is that you came to focus on the deficits of humanity rather than the glory and majesty of the Gospel itself.  I think there can be peace for each of us in this life, but we have to want to submit to his will for us wholly and completely. We are not good at that.  We prefer to do things when, and for the reasons, we decide.  Why should I go wash in the river seven times?  I have nice clean water right here in my home. What we choose to do is not go and do exactly what the Savior asks of us.  Guess what?  The result is that we are not healed completely - not because God refused us, but simply because we just don't want or like to submit.

Goodness or righteousness is absolutely not, and never has been, the sole possession of God's chosen people.  It was not yesterday and it is not today. 

Edited by Storm Rider
  • Like 3
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14 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

Hello Jeanne,

No, but I sense that your posts are not hyper-critical; or maybe it is the constant attacks that come from the questioner.  It just gets so tiresome.

I have never equated the Savior with the Church.  For some reason I have always seen them as different.  From a very young age I had a testimony of our Heavenly Father; as I got older my testimony grew and I came to know the Savior.  I have never sensed any kind of relationship with any of the prophets; ancient or modern.  I may have some favorites, but these are just affinities for a person and nothing more.

What I find repeatedly in us, humans, is the unrealistic expectation of not only common disciples of Jesus Christ, but all of his servants.  I have studied religion most of my adult life and I have never come close to a gospel that "fits" like the Restored gospel of the Savior.  The fact that God used a man such as Joseph Smith to restore the gospel is not of significant importance to me.  To know that he was human and in need for forgiveness is no more surprising than me getting up in the morning and seeing myself in the mirror and knowing to the center of my utmost being that I am also human and in desperate need of forgiveness.  If God forgives me then I am completely certain that he forgives everyone else - including his servants.  

Your questioning was nothing more than questioning.  The problem is that you came to focus on the deficits of humanity rather than the glory and majesty of the Gospel itself.  I think there can be peace of reach of us in this life, but we have to want to submit to his will for us wholly and completely. We are not good at that.  We prefer to do things when and for the reasons we decide.  Why should I go wash in the river seven times?  I have nice clean water right here and what we choose to do is not go do exactly what the Savior asks of us.  Guess what?  We are not healed completely - not because God refused us, but simply because we just don't want or like to submit.

Goodness or righteousness is absolutely not, and never has been, the sole possession of God's chosen people.  It was not yesterday and it is not today. 

Okay...thank you for your response. You have given me much to think about.

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5 minutes ago, bluebell said:

Whenever people try to convince me not to pray about something, these two verses always come into my head.

Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day.

And

For if ye would hearken unto the Spirit which teacheth a man to pray, ye would know that ye must pray; for the evil spirit teacheth not a man to pray, but teacheth him that he must not pray.

I agree with both of you.

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I have looked at parts of the Book of Mormon but have not read it through. It is asking quite a bit of someone who is a strong and faithful believer in one religion to read another religion's 400 page sacred text with the intent of asking God if it is true. If someone were wavering in their faith, or didn't have a faith at all, then that would make more sense.

There are many many religious texts out there... do we need to read them all to find out religious truth, or can we hold to the religious truth we already know and not read all those books? How much time do LDS spend reading other religions' books?

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I would suggest that you missed the most important step:

0. Believe in an omniscient god that will reliably communicate to you using feelings and answer questions that are posed to him (it?) in such a way that you should have 100% confidence and make life-long commitments based on these feelings.

As atheism becomes more common, this will be the first stumbling block for many people.

16 hours ago, Five Solas said:

1. Read the Book of Mormon

2.  Ask God

3. With a sincere heart

4. With real intent

5. Having faith in Christ

 

 

Edited by cinepro
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53 minutes ago, cinepro said:

I would suggest that you missed the most important step:

0. Believe in an omniscient god that will reliably communicate to you using feelings and answer questions that are posed to him (it?) in such a way that you should have 100% confidence and make life-long commitments based on these feelings.

As atheism becomes more common, this will be the first stumbling block for many people.

 

And THAT is the most important step also in following the Bible which is used to attack the Book of Mormon

So essentially all attacks on the BOM from Biblical fundamentalists, sola scriptura folks etc are circular arguments.  If there is no god able to communicate directly to humans, the Bible cannot be from God

And how do we know the Bible is from God?  By the feelings of our hearts ONLY, the exact same way that we confirm the BOM.

No communication to individuals through feelings = no god, = no bible= no BOM

It all comes down directly to Moroni and Alma and some others, 1 James etc.

If God cannot show us truth individually- it's all over and on the other side, that individual communication is all that counts.

Period.  :)

Again, in God we trust- and there is no reason to trust anyone else that they know more about God than you do.  :)

If God cannot tell you himself, why would you listen to someone else who says God communicates to HIM and not YOU??

I have this bridge here I would like to sell.....  ;)

Or better yet: 

God has told me you should all send me your tithes because I talk to God and you don't!!

Right now would be fine. 

 

Edited by mfbukowski
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22 hours ago, Five Solas said:

Would any LDS seriously admonish an investigator to read the Bible first in order to attain “faith in Christ” prior to attempting the Book of Mormon?

Thanks for the great question.  When missionaries teach the discussions, they start with the Atonement of Jesus Christ.  They invite investigators if they have faith in Jesus Christ, to pray in His name regarding the Book of Mormon and the restoration of the Gospel.  If they don't yet have faith in Christ, they are taught.  The missionaries ask them to read passages from the Bible and the Book of Mormon.  The Spirit testifies that He lives, same as in a Billy Graham alter call.  They continue to teach about Jesus Christ, the restoration and how to pray in the name of Jesus.  The same Spirit that testifies of Jesus Christ testifies the Book of Mormon is true, which also testifies of the Savior.

Did you read the Bible before you became converted to Jesus? Or was it an alter call situation where you prayed, invited Him into your life and the Spirit gave you a feeling of joy and gratitude it was true?  Thats one way it happens.  Another is reading the Scriptures and praying.  For Alma, he heard the words of Abinadi and there was a mighty change in his heart.  So I don't know there is necessarily a firstborder in all cases.  However the Lord reveals Himself to the individual is how it happens.  I wouldn't presume to tie His hands.

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On 3/2/2018 at 12:06 AM, Five Solas said:

Then the truth of the Book of Mormon will be manifested to you.  Full stop.

Is Moroni writing this invitation to the Lamanites (Moroni 10:1)?  Who are the lamanites?  What are "these things" referred to in Moroni 10:3?  A search on the 2-gram "these things" on the book of mormon pulls up many interesting results. 

Edited by blueglass
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12 hours ago, Spammer said:

You need another category. I’m formerly LDS, met all five of your prerequisites, but never received the expected confirmatory spiritual witness. I don’t believe Nephites existed. 

You did receive a spiritual confirmation, but didn't recognize it. Learning to recognize spiritual promptings can take many years, you just have to be very patient. Never give up trying.

Edited by SamuelTheLamanite
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23 hours ago, The Nehor said:

You also missed the connected prerequisites in the previous verse about remembering the mercy of God and probably reading the Bible too.

He just needs to learn patience. Learning to recognize the spirit is a slow process that can take years. Not an easy process.

Edited by SamuelTheLamanite
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       Alma uses three extended alternates in rapid sequence to instruct his son. 
       A   For behold, it is as easy to give heed to the word of Christ, 
          B   which will point to you 
              C   a straight course to eternal bliss, 
      A   as it was for our fathers to give heed to this compass, 
           B   which would point unto them 
               C   a straight course to the promised land.
      The A phrase compares the ease of heeding the words of Christ with the ease of looking at the Liahona. The B phrase describes the purpose of A which is to point the course. The C phrase declares the final destination of those who follow A, salvation and arrival at the promised land.
       A   For just as surely as this director did bring our fathers, 
         B   by following its course, 
             C   to the promised land, 
      A   shall the words of Christ, 
         B   if we follow their course,
             C  carry us beyond this vale of sorrow into a far better land of promise.
      The A phrase again compares the words of Christ with the Liahona, but in reversed order. The B phrase indicates what we should do with A – follow their directions, and the C phrase gives the destination of those who do B – the promised land and a far better place, eternal life. 
       A   for so was it with our fathers; 
         B    for so was it prepared for them,
            C   that if they would look they might live; 
      A   even so it is with us.
         B   The way is prepared, 
            C   and if we will look we may live forever.
      In this last alternate, Alma personalizes the analogies of the first two. The A phrase compares the Nephite fathers (Lehi and Nephi) with Alma and his son Helaman. The B phrase indicates that God prepared the ways of direction for all of them. The C phrase compares the physical salvation of the Nephite fathers by following the Liahona with the spiritual salvation promised to all of us who will look upon Christ.
      Alma concludes his instructions with another impassioned fatherly plea that his son rise to the greatness of his calling.
      This passage indicates deliberate logical planning on the part of Alma in giving crucial instructions to his son prior to his death. This is what Alma thought would be of most worth to his son - look to Christ. It gives us insight into the Nephite mind, especially that of a powerful and gifted leader. I am so grateful for the Book of Mormon and the beautiful intricacies that await in its pages for us to discover. (Thanks to Donald Parry for his marvelous edition of the Book of Mormon. Poetic Parallelism in the Book of Mormon: The Complete Text Reformatted. Maxwell Institute, 2007).
       Your comments are welcomed. 
       Here is the passage in context.
       
    • By hope_for_things
      Where did the Book of Mormon come from.  I constantly hear this idea argued from both apologetic and critical sides.  All in an attempt to explain how Joseph could have produced the Book of Mormon.  Yet, when it comes right down to it, both sides should be able to agree on some pretty basic historical facts from the evidence.  
      Joseph Smith dictated the content of the BoM to some scribes Nearly everyone should be able to agree on that statement, and I think that really explains it in a nutshell.  I was thinking about other figures in history that are revered for things they produced.  Newton, Einstein, Beethoven, Da Vinci, Michelangelo, etc.  Do anyone else spend so much time asking where they came up with their masterpiece works?  Where did Einstein get that amazing theory of relativity?  Where did Michelangelo get that amazing statue of David.  How could they have possibly produced these things?  Where did they come from?  
      I think we spend so much time looking for evidence, trying to find parallels, seeking to understand where the BoM came from, that we are missing the answer right in front of our faces and we should all be able to agree on.  The BoM came from Joseph Smith.  This is the clear and straightforward answer that both believers and nonbelievers should be able to agree on, and its the simple answer to a highly debated question.  
    • By Robert F. Smith
      Annalee Newitz, “Most scientists now reject the idea that the first Americans came by land,” Ars Technica, Nov 4, 2017, online at https://arstechnica.com/science/2017/11/majority-of-scientists-now-agree-that-humans-came-to-the-americas-by-boat/ , with map,
      Todd J. Braje, et al., “Finding the first Americans,” Science, 358/6363 (3 Nov 2017):592-594, online at http://science.sciencemag.org/content/358/6363/592 ,
      It now appears that coming to America by boat was normal even from earliest times.  There is no longer any reason to credit the Beringia Land Bridge hypothesis, except in a much later period.
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