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Comparing 2 Nephi 26 With 3 Nephi 8-10


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Others have probably already noted this, but here I compare 2 Nephi 26:1-8 (Nephi’s prophecy of the destruction that would follow the death of Jesus) with Mormon’s documentation of its fulfillment in 3 Nephi 8-10, including a review of the events in the words of Jesus. Mormon notes that this was the fulfillment of the words of the prophets in their scriptures (3 Nephi 10:11).

I think the consistency in the details is remarkable considering the separation in time and text between the two accounts in the translation process. In some cases the words and order of events are exactly the same. Considering the fact that Joseph did not ask his scribes to review or reread passages to refresh his memory makes this even more intriguing. 

If someone else has already written about this, I would like to look at it for comparison, but I am not aware that anyone has. Of course, I welcome your comments. Have at me!

 

Calamities prophesied by Nephi (2 Nephi 26:1-8, in textual order): 

A. the proud and wicked shall be burned up like stubble

B. they will be swallowed up by the depths of the earth [by implication, also the sea]

C. the mountains shall cover them

D. whirlwinds will carry them away

E. buildings shall fall on them, crush them to pieces, and grind them to powder

F. thunderings

G. lightnings

 H. earthquakes

I.  all manner of destructions

Calamities documented by Mormon (3 Nephi 8-10 in textual order and compared with Nephi’s order): 

F. G. I. a great storm like no other previous storm

F. G. I. a terrible tempest

F. terrible thunder

G. sharp lightening

A. cities set on fire

B. cities sunk into the sea 

C. cities sunk and covered by earth and mountains

 F. G. I. tempests

D. whirlwinds

F. thunderings

G. lightning

H. quaking of the earth

A. B. C. E. F. H. cities sunk, burned, shaken

E. buildings fall to the earth and inhabitants killed

I. many great destructions

The voice of Jesus before His appearance to the Nephites explaining the destruction of the wicked (3 Nephi 9:1-12) compared with Nephi and Mormon’s lists:

those who perished did so because of their wickedness and abomination (casting out, stoning, and killing the saints and prophets)

-the blood of the prophets cried out to Him against them

-A. cities and inhabitants were burned by fire

-B. cities and inhabitants were sunk into the sea

-C. cities and inhabitants were covered with earth

-B. I. cities and inhabitants were flooded

-I. there were other great destructions

Mormon's (3 Nephi 10:12-14) instructions to the Nephites that the righteous who were saved:

-B. C. were not sunken and buried in the earth

- I. were not drowned in the sea

-A. were not burned by fire

-C. E. were not fallen upon and crushed to death

-D. were not carried away in the whirlwind

-I. were not overpowered by the vapor of smoke and darkness [suffocated]

Other similar details between  2 Nephi 26 and Mormon 3 Nephi 8-10:

Nephi:

-1. the wicked will perish because they will cast out, stone, and slay the saints and prophets

-2. The blood of the saints will cry to the Lord against the wicked

-3. the righteous will not perish

-4. Christ will apear to them after the destruction

-5.  Christ shall heal them

-6. They will have peace for three and four generations, but then will come unparalleled destruction 

Mormon:

-1. the righteous who were saved did not cast out, stone, or shed the blood of the prophets

-2. the blood of the saints and prophets came up to the Lord

-3. the righteous did not perish

-4. Jesus appeared to the people after this great destruction

-5. Jesus healed and taught them

-6. They had peace for three and four generations, but then came unparalleled destruction

In review, Mormon asks the reader to search the scriptures to see if these things were not also predicted by the prophets Jacob, Zenos, and Zenock  (3 Nephi 10:14-17):

-death and destruction by fire, tempests, whirlwind, and opening of the earth

Edited by Bernard Gui
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1 hour ago, Bernard Gui said:

1. the righteous who were saved did not cast out, stone, or shed the blood of the prophets

-2. the blood of the saints and prophets came up to the Lord

-3. the righteous did not perish

-4. Jesus appeared to the people after this great destruction

-5. Jesus healed and taught them

-6. They had peace for three and four generations, but then came unparalleled destruction

In review, Mormon asks the reader to search the scriptures to see if these things were not also predicted by the prophets Jacob, Zenos, and Zenock  (3 Nephi 10:14-17):

I find the prophesies interesting, correlating with recent discoveries.  Also they, along with wars, rumors of wars and pestilences provide a reasonable counter claim to over population.  Add to those the resurgence of measles, mumps, syphilis, antibiotic resistant STD's, and a host of new diseases-- I think the planet is secure for a good long time.  

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Compare 1 Nephi 1:8 with Alma 36:22. Remarkable, given the difference in time when the two were dictated/recorded, and given that he didn't use notes or books.

The Book of Mormon is full of stuff like this!

ETA: Looks like Robert Smith beat me to that on the other thread. Sorry! Hadn't read it yet. 

Edited by rongo
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4 hours ago, rongo said:

Compare 1 Nephi 1:8 with Alma 36:22. Remarkable, given the difference in time when the two were dictated/recorded, and given that he didn't use notes or books.

The Book of Mormon is full of stuff like this!

ETA: Looks like Robert Smith beat me to that on the other thread. Sorry! Hadn't read it yet. 

Thanks. Any comments on what I have presented?

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7 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Duplicate intertextual accounts are also found in the Bible, sometimes in both prose and poetic form:  (Exodus 13:17 - 14:30 || 15:1-21; Judges 4 || 5).

Garth Norman likewise noted the narrative and epistolary form of the same event (Mormon 4 || Moroni 9).

Thank you, again, for the other examples. Any comments on the OP?

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15 hours ago, Bernard Gui said:

I think the consistency in the details is remarkable considering the separation in time and text between the two accounts in the translation process. In some cases the words and order of events are exactly the same. Considering the fact that Joseph did not ask his scribes to review or reread passages to refresh his memory makes this even more intriguing. 

 

I think we sometimes go too far in assuming what Joseph did or didn't do during the period of translation.

We understand that the golden plates themselves were sacred and had to remain hidden, but there was never any such condition placed on the written papers.  There would be no reason for Joseph or Oliver or whomever they wished to not read the translation-in-progress during those months. 

This is especially notable in light of the recent discoveries about Joseph's reliance on the Adam Clarke Bible commentary in the creation of the JST.  Certainly, we don't have any eyewitness accounts saying that they saw Joseph regularly referencing Adam Clarke's work, but it seems to be very likely that he did just that.  I suspect that before that research was published, some people would argue that it was unreasonable to suggest Joseph had copied from Clarke because there was no account of someone seeing him do that.

Likewise, some caution is probably warranted in assuming what Joseph did or didn't do during the translation process of the Book of Mormon.

Edited by cinepro
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1 hour ago, cinepro said:

I think we sometimes go too far in assuming what Joseph did or didn't do during the period of translation.

We understand that the golden plates themselves were sacred and had to remain hidden, but there was never any such condition placed on the written papers.  There would be no reason for Joseph or Oliver or whomever they wished to not read the translation-in-progress during those months. 

This is especially notable in light of the recent discoveries about Joseph's reliance on the Adam Clarke Bible commentary in the creation of the JST.  Certainly, we don't have any eyewitness accounts saying that they saw Joseph regularly referencing Adam Clarke's work, but it seems to be very likely that he did just that.  I suspect that before that research was published, some people would argue that it was unreasonable to suggest Joseph had copied from Clarke because there was no account of someone seeing him do that.

Likewise, some caution is probably warranted in assuming what Joseph did or didn't do during the translation process of the Book of Mormon.

All nice and good. Any comments on the actual content of the OP? If not, that's fine.

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It may not be as separated as we think. From what I understand, after the lost manuscript pages, Joseph continued on through the end of the BOM. Then he came back and translated from the small plates. This means he translated 1 and 2 Nephi after he translated Mormon chapter 10.

Do I have this wrong?

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@Bernard Gui, I see you are seeking input on the OP. I think it speaks for itself--an excellent observation, and thank you for sharing it. The consistency in the details is remarkable, though I have found the several other intricate and complex plot confluences found in the Book of Mormon to be even more so. But the consistency in content, the testimony of Jesus Christ, is unparalleled even by those plot points, clearly establishing what the Book of Mormon is and is all about.

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2 hours ago, cinepro said:

I think we sometimes go too far in assuming what Joseph did or didn't do during the period of translation.

We understand that the golden plates themselves were sacred and had to remain hidden, but there was never any such condition placed on the written papers.  There would be no reason for Joseph or Oliver or whomever they wished to not read the translation-in-progress during those months. 

This is especially notable in light of the recent discoveries about Joseph's reliance on the Adam Clarke Bible commentary in the creation of the JST.  Certainly, we don't have any eyewitness accounts saying that they saw Joseph regularly referencing Adam Clarke's work, but it seems to be very likely that he did just that.  I suspect that before that research was published, some people would argue that it was unreasonable to suggest Joseph had copied from Clarke because there was no account of someone seeing him do that.

Likewise, some caution is probably warranted in assuming what Joseph did or didn't do during the translation process of the Book of Mormon.

I don't think these passages are set in the Book of Mormon to prove that it is true or to prove that Joseph Smith was a prophet, but only to testify (repeatedly) that Jesus is the Christ, which is the number one purpose of the book.

I think what Joseph Smith did in translating the book is well-described within various passages of the Book of Mormon, so if one receives the witness of the book as promised in Moroni 10:3-5, the passages in the OP can be appreciated for what they are and a personal testimony of Jesus strengthened, and at the same time a testimony of Joseph Smith.

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On 3/5/2018 at 3:47 PM, filovirus said:

It may not be as separated as we think. From what I understand, after the lost manuscript pages, Joseph continued on through the end of the BOM. Then he came back and translated from the small plates. This means he translated 1 and 2 Nephi after he translated Mormon chapter 10.

Do I have this wrong?

An excellent question! Thank you. I have though about that, too.

One person's timeline....

Quote

April 7 - May 15.  Mosiah 1 through 3 Nephi 11

June 1 - June 15.  1 Nephi through 2 Nephi 27

Re-exploring the Book of Mormon. John Welsh, ed. Deseret Book Company, 1992. p.8

 

So, let's say May 12-15 for 3 Nephi 8 and June 13-15 for 2 Nephi 26.

About a month. Would you agree? If this is correct, he would have to remember those details after about 30 days, days which were filled with translating lots of pages and pursuing other necessary life-sustaining activities. Perhaps he had that kind of memory. I don't! :)

Edited by Bernard Gui
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7 hours ago, cinepro said:

...................................

This is especially notable in light of the recent discoveries about Joseph's reliance on the Adam Clarke Bible commentary in the creation of the JST.  Certainly, we don't have any eyewitness accounts saying that they saw Joseph regularly referencing Adam Clarke's work, but it seems to be very likely that he did just that.  I suspect that before that research was published, some people would argue that it was unreasonable to suggest Joseph had copied from Clarke because there was no account of someone seeing him do that.........................

Seems perfectly reasonable to me that Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon referred to Adam Clarke and similar works while creating the JST in the pages of their 1828 Phinney Bible.  It appears to me to have been a primarily rational effort, the sort of thing a Methodist or Mormon Sunday School Teacher might do in preparation for class.  Probably very educational for both Sidney and Joseph.

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10 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

I copied it to my files.  I am very impressed.

If you find it worthwhile, feel free to use it as you wish.

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20 hours ago, Bernard Gui said:

 

About a month. Would you agree? If this is correct, he would have to remember those details after about 30 days, days which were filled with translating lots of pages and pursuing other necessary life-sustaining activities. Perhaps he had that kind of memory. I don't! :)

Or... maybe he had the pages sitting next to him to refer to?  That was the point of my post.

But the possibility of him having that kind of memory is also worth considering.  One of the problems with arguments based on "he couldn't have done that without supernatural help" is that we (people in general) aren't very good judges of what is possible on the outer edges of human capability.  Certainly, it's true that the average person couldn't do it, but that isn't what is required.  We only need Joseph to have been able to do it, and just once. 

It's possible he had supernatural help in all this, but until we are able to confidently asses the limits of what he might have been capable of (without reverting to cliches about "uneducated farm boys"), pointing out unusual facets of the translation only go to show how unusual the endeavor was, which no one will argue. 

It's the argument that such unique facets demand supernatural explanations (and even go so far as to prove supernatural assistance) that becomes problematic.  You may argue that  it was impossible for Joseph to quote a previously translated part of the Book of Mormon in another part of the book, but as the Rogers and Hammerstein song goes, "impossible things are happening every day."

 

 

Edited by cinepro
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4 hours ago, cinepro said:

Or... maybe he had the pages sitting next to him to refer to?  That was the point of my post.

But the possibility of him having that kind of memory is also worth considering.  One of the problems with arguments based on "he couldn't have done that without supernatural help" is that we (people in general) aren't very good judges of what is possible on the outer edges of human capability.  Certainly, it's true that the average person couldn't do it, but that isn't what is required.  We only need Joseph to have been able to do it, and just once. 

It's possible he had supernatural help in all this, but until we are able to confidently asses the limits of what he might have been capable of (and reverting to cliches about "uneducated farm boys" isn't helpful in that regard), pointing out unusual facets of the translation only go to show how unusual the endeavor was, which no one will argue. 

It's the argument that such unique facets demand supernatural explanations (and even go so far as to prove supernatural assistance) that becomes problematic.  You may argue that  it was impossible for Joseph to quote a previously translated part of the Book of Mormon in another part of the book, but as the Rogers and Hammerstein song goes, "impossible things are happening every day."

 

 

According to William Clayton, Emma was so incensed over the 10 page revelation on polygamy that she pestered Joseph to be allowed to destroy it. 

Quote

that Emma had so teased and urgently entreated him for the privilege of destroying it, that he became so weary of her teasing, and to get rid of her annoyance, he told her she might destroy it and she had done so, but he had consented to her wish in this matter to pacify her, realizing that he knew the revelation perfectly and could rewrite it at any time if necessary."

At least in this version of the story, Joseph is seen as claiming to be able to reproduce a 10  page document "perfectly"

 

See here. Link is a pdf file.

Edited by CA Steve
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20 hours ago, CA Steve said:

According to William Clayton, Emma was so incensed over the 10 page revelation on polygamy that she pestered Joseph to be allowed to destroy it. 

At least in this version of the story, Joseph is seen as claiming to be able to reproduce a 10  page document "perfectly"

 

See here. Link is a pdf file.

Said William Clayton of something he may have heard 50 years earlier. There are conflicting accounts of “the burning.” Some say it was burned by Emma or by Joseph himself. Some say it was not. Didn’t Brigham Young claim to have the original? If it was in fact burned, did he ever rewrite it? There were other copies of it. 

Are you suggesting this is evidence Joseph had a photographic memory? Or maybe he was being somewhat sarcastic and engaging in a bit of Mormansplaining braggadocio in an argument with his wife (assuming Clayton actually heard this and remembered it correctly).

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13 minutes ago, Bernard Gui said:

Said William Clayton of something he may have heard 50 years earlier. There are conflicting accounts of “the burning.” Some say it was burned by Emma or by Joseph himself. Some say it was not. Didn’t Brigham Young claim to have the original? If it was in fact burned, did he ever rewrite it? There were other copies of it. 

Are you suggesting this is evidence Joseph had a photographic memory? Or maybe he was being somewhat sarcastic and engaging in a bit of Mormansplaining braggadocio in an argument with his wife (assuming Clayton actually heard this and remembered it correctly).

I don't think I suggested anything other than noting what a contemporary witness recorded. If you want to challenge what Clayton said with other eyewitness accounts, I would be interested to hear them.  I do know there were other copies of it, but that does not, by itself, suggest anything as to Joseph's ability to be able to recreate it. We could speculate about as to why Joseph would make such a statement, if we assume he made it, including the reason being that he actually was capable of doing so.

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On 3/6/2018 at 10:43 AM, cinepro said:
Quote

Or... maybe he had the pages sitting next to him to refer to?  That was the point of my post.

Possibly. I am not aware there is evidence that he did and that he referred to them. Are you?

 

On 3/6/2018 at 10:43 AM, cinepro said:

But the possibility of him having that kind of memory is also worth considering.  One of the problems with arguments based on "he couldn't have done that without supernatural help" is that we (people in general) aren't very good judges of what is possible on the outer edges of human capability.  Certainly, it's true that the average person couldn't do it, but that isn't what is required.  We only need Joseph to have been able to do it, and just once. 

Possibly. I would like to see more evidence from close associates that he had such a phenomenal memory. For must people, such mastery comes from long and serious study, something Joseph had nor done. I have intimately known only one (possibly another) person with a photographic memory, but his intellect was crazy off the charts. While some may dispute photographic memory is real, he could recall texts he had read including the place on the page he was quoting. He could read symphonic scores as one reads a book and hear the music in his head complete. He said he preferred that to live performances because there were no mistakes when he read it. Mozart was able to reproduce music he heard only once. Maybe Joseph had one of these phenomenal gifts, or perhaps he just had a better-than-average memory, onsidering that he could interweave biblical scriptures into his public discourses later in life. It’s interesting that he didn’t do that much with Book of Mormon citations.

 

On 3/6/2018 at 10:43 AM, cinepro said:

It's possible he had supernatural help in all this, but until we are able to confidently asses the limits of what he might have been capable of (without reverting to cliches about "uneducated farm boys"), pointing out unusual facets of the translation only go to show how unusual the endeavor was, which no one will argue. 

The supernatural help would have been in the form of him translating a document by seeing the words on a stone or having them form in his mind as the process unfolded. Given the limited time he had to spend on translation and the sheer volume of pages he produced per day, I doubt he was in a favorable position to sort through pages of non-punctuated, unannotated, unversed, unchaptered text to search for some 8 or 10 sentences he had written a month earlier. 

I don’t see that this as some sort of cliche that discredits the evaluation of what happened with the production of the BoM. The reality of his situation was that he was an uneducated farm boy. At least at the age of 17. He could dig holes, ride horses and drive wagons, build fences, cut trees, clear land, make maple syrup, build stone walls, make barrels, tell stories, look into stones, etc. That was the totality of his life up to then. Those who knew him best consistently said this of him. Even neighbors and childhood friends had this opinion of him. 

On 3/6/2018 at 10:43 AM, cinepro said:

It's the argument that such unique facets demand supernatural explanations (and even go so far as to prove supernatural assistance) that becomes problematic.  You may argue that  it was impossible for Joseph to quote a previously translated part of the Book of Mormon in another part of the book, but as the Rogers and Hammerstein song goes, "impossible things are happening every day."

Not so much. It’s the argument that that there may be more to the story than that a supposedly secretly prodigious New England farm boy wrote a pretty remarkable book or cribbed it from someone who was actually capable of writing it.

You misunderstand if you think the OP was an attempt to “prove” the authenticity of the BoM. I posted it because it is a remarkable example of such things that have been documented by Robert F. Smith and others. I’m not aware that I have ever claimed there is any kind of proof of supernatural assistance. While I am a firm believer that such assistance is what happened, my assurance comes from remarkable supernatural experiences of my own, not from such external evidences. 

As that other Rogers and Hammerstein song goes, 

Quote

When I was a boy, world was better spot
What was so was so, what was not was not
Now, I am a man, world have changed a lot
Some things nearly so, others nearly not

There are times I almost think
I am not sure of what I absolutely know
Very often find confusion
In conclusion, I concluded long ago

In my head are many facts
That, as a student, I have studied to procure
In my head are many facts
Of which I wish I was more certain, I was sure
Is a puzzlement....

Is a danger to be trusting one another
One will seldom want to do what other wishes
But unless someday somebody trust somebody
There'll be nothing left on earth excepting fishes

There are times I almost think
Nobody sure of what he absolutely know
Everybody find confusion
In conclusion, he concluded long ago

And it puzzle me to learn
That tho' a man may be in doubt of what he know
Very quickly he will fight
He'll fight to prove that what he does not know is so

Oh, sometimes I think that people going mad
Ah, sometimes I think that people not so bad
But not matter what I think, I must go on living life
As leader of my kingdom, I must go forth
Be father to my children and husband to each wife
Etcetera, etcetera and so forth

If my Lord in Heaven Buddha, show the way
Everyday I try to live another day
If my Lord in Heaven Buddha, show the way
Everyday I do my best for one more day

But is a puzzlement

 

Edited by Bernard Gui
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16 minutes ago, Bernard Gui said:

Possibly. I would like to see more evidence from close associates that he had such a phenomenal memory. For must people, such mastery comes from long and serious study, something Joseph had nor done. I have intimately known only one (possibly another) person with a photographic memory, but his intellect was crazy off the charts. While some may dispute photographic memory is real, he could recall texts he had read including the place on the page he was quoting. He could read symphonic scores as one reads a book and hear the music in his head complete. He said he preferred that to live performances because there were no mistakes when he read it. Mozart was able to reproduce music he heard only once. Maybe Joseph had one of these phenomenal gifts, or perhaps he just had a better-than-average memory, onsidering that he could interweave biblical scriptures into his public discourses later in life. It’s interesting that he didn’t do that much with Book of Mormon citations.

I think you way underestimate the ability of the average person to commit passages or even pages to memory. I served a foreign mission during the time when discussions were memorized word for word. When I arrived at the MTC I did not speak more than a few words of the language of my mission. By the end of the two months there, I as well as many of the other missionaries there, were committing as much as ten pages of our discussions or so to memory, all the while retaining those pages we had already memorized.  I knew missionaries with much better memories than mine who actually left the MTC with all their discussions memorized perfectly in a language they did not even speak two months earlier. It does not take a photographic memory to memorize a document.  

 

Fair disclosure, I still have my discussion book and most pages are not full of text, so ten pages in the discussion was probably like five full pages of text, but it was in a foreign language and something that I did not originally write.

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2 hours ago, CA Steve said:

I think you way underestimate the ability of the average person to commit passages or even pages to memory. I served a foreign mission during the time when discussions were memorized word for word. When I arrived at the MTC I did not speak more than a few words of the language of my mission. By the end of the two months there, I as well as many of the other missionaries there, were committing as much as ten pages of our discussions or so to memory, all the while retaining those pages we had already memorized.  I knew missionaries with much better memories than mine who actually left the MTC with all their discussions memorized perfectly in a language they did not even speak two months earlier. It does not take a photographic memory to memorize a document.  

 

Fair disclosure, I still have my discussion book and most pages are not full of text, so ten pages in the discussion was probably like five full pages of text, but it was in a foreign language and something that I did not originally write.

I think you project too much. And misunderstand what I’m saying.

I, too, arrived at the Language Training Mission, as it was called then, and left 3 months later with all 6 Señor Gomez discussions memorized. I have also memorized a few poems, enough bluegrass and 60s and 70s country/folk music to play three 1-hour sets without repetition and have enough tunes left over for a few more sets, and a number of concertos and other pieces for the violin. I can play many hymns on the piano and organ by memory, but that’s because I started playing them 60 years ago and have been playing them ever since.

None of this came easily, but I know musicians who memorize faster than I do. The great violinist Fritz Kreisler is rumored to have not practiced much. Some say he would read a new piece while riding on a train between concerts in Europe and perform it at the next city.

Are you suggesting Joseph memorized the BoM as he read the words in the hat? That would be photographic and astounding. 

 

Edited by Bernard Gui
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5 minutes ago, Bernard Gui said:

I think you project too much. And misunderstand what I’m saying.

I, too, arrived at the Language Training Mission, as it was called then, and left 3 months later with all 6 Señor Gomez discussions memorized. I have also memorized a few poems, enough bluegrass and 60s and 70s country/folk music to play three 1-hour sets without repetition and have enough tunes left over for a few more sets, and a number of concertos and other pieces for the violin. I can play many hymns on the piano and organ by memory, but that’s because I started playing them 60 years ago and have been playing them ever since.

None of this came easily, but I know musicians who memorize faster than I do. The great violinist is rumored to have not practiced much. Some say he would read a new piece while riding on a train between concerts in Europe and perform it at the next city.

Are you suggesting Joseph memorized the BoM as he read the words in the hat? That would be photographic and astounding. 

 

No I am suggesting that it is not impossible or even improbable that when he wanted, Joseph could remember passages of something he had previously written. In order to explain the question you posed in the OP it is not necessary that he have the entire portions of the BoM he had already written memorized, only that he be able to recall accurately  some portion he had previously written. The fact he could remember that previous passage accurately may be exactly why he used it later on. We do know he quoted extensively from the King James version of the Bible and now from Clarke's commentary, even though there are no witnesses who saw either of those two books present during the production of the BoM. So either he was quoting those books by memory also or he was able to reference them without others seeing. Either method would explain the similarity of the two passages you cited in the OP.

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3 hours ago, CA Steve said:

I don't think I suggested anything other than noting what a contemporary witness recorded. If you want to challenge what Clayton said with other eyewitness accounts, I would be interested to hear them.  I do know there were other copies of it, but that does not, by itself, suggest anything as to Joseph's ability to be able to recreate it. We could speculate about as to why Joseph would make such a statement, if we assume he made it, including the reason being that he actually was capable of doing so.

I think you are really stretching. It’s not up to me to prove your assertion. There are plenty of problems that arise from it.  

Recorded, apparently, 50 years after hearing whatever he heard in this specific instance? Was he in the room when they had this conversation? Did he record it at that time? Was he eavesdropping from an adjacent room? Did someone else tell him later what they had said or heard? Did he learn this from other stories that were being spread? Did anyone else record this statement or comment on it? Did Joseph ever tout his prodigious memorizing ability to anyone else? Did Joseph receive the revelation, write it down, and then put it away never to refer to it again?

Let’s assume Clayton’s memory of the statement was correct. What has that to do with the observation in the OP that two passages in the BoM, written perhaps a month apart, show remarkable consistency in matching the many specific details of a prophecy and its fulfillment?

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7 minutes ago, CA Steve said:

No I am suggesting that it is not impossible or even improbable that when he wanted, Joseph could remember passages of something he had previously written. In order to explain the question you posed in the OP it is not necessary that he have the entire portions of the BoM he had already written memorized, only that he be able to recall accurately  some portion he had previously written. The fact he could remember that previous passage accurately may be exactly why he used it later on. We do know he quoted extensively from the King James version of the Bible and now from Clarke's commentary, even though there are no witnesses who saw either of those two books present during the production of the BoM. So either he was quoting those books by memory also or he was able to reference them without others seeing. Either method would explain the similarity of the two passages you cited in the OP.

Your version does not comport with the description of what went on as described by the people who were in the tiny room with him, but anything is possible, I suppose. It’s even possible he told the truth about translating the book. 

Edited by Bernard Gui
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