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Fair Dinkum

The 1922 B.H. Robert's Meeting With General Authoriteis Re: Book of Mormon Problems and the Secret Meetings That Followed it

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, stemelbow said:

Thanks, Bob.  I'm not sure I understand where you're coming from with the immense ego stuff.  It certainly seems evident his views changed as he researched, and I think it's true he was quite passionate about the concerns raised, particularly as they relate to the BoM.  As per his faith, I"m not sure he'd categorize it that way.  It appears to me he held the Book of Mormon to carry inspiration even though it was not historical as claimed.  

He did a lot of uncharacteristic things -- uncharacteristic of a general authority.

He championed the role of the Seventy as a General Authority when we expect general authorities to be rather understated in their appointments.

He had published a picture of himself crossing the plains.  

He disguised himself as a tramp to recover the bodies of two slain missionaries and then had a picture taken of himself as a tramp and had it published. 

He publicly opposed the Brethren for opposing his efforts to run for the US House of Representatives and that of apostate apostle Moses Thatcher.

He wrote novels.

He published a history of the church but freely edited out objectionable stuff -- contrary to historical standards.

And more.  

And then, when he had his crisis of faith, he expected an arcade-like revelation.  Put in a dime and get a revelation. He set it up for that, even though he probably knew none of the Brethren were all that conversant with the the doctrines of the Book of Mormon or its history or story line. 

Jack Welch has championed him as a life-time believer but I don't think he was.  And it doesn't bother me.  Richard Lyman was kicked out for decades of secret adultery (general authorities who traveled with him on Church business would complain about his crudity); Moses Thatcher for apostasy.; Joseph Fielding Smith (the Patriarch not the President) for homosexuality; John A Taylor for apostasy; Matthias Cowley for apostasy;  George Lee for apostasy at a time he was a secret pedophile; James Hamula, for reasons I know and which plagued him while he was a general authority but I don't think are public.   Shows the church works despite the failures of men.  Helps me to understand the role of revelation and freedom of personal will in the Church.  

 

 

Edited by Bob Crockett
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16 hours ago, smac97 said:

Perhaps the "mistakes of men" are not in the doctrine?

In the law, when an appellate court publishes an opinion, it is comprised of two elements: ratio decidendi and obiter dicta.

"Ratio decidendi" is "a Latin phrase meaning 'the reason' or 'the rationale for the decision'. The ratio decidendi is 'the point in a case that determines the judgement' or 'the principle that the case establishes'."

"Obiter dicta" is "a Latin phrase meaning 'by the way', that is, a remark in a judgment that is 'said in passing.'"  "For the purposes of judicial precedent, ratio decidendi is binding, whereas obiter dicta are persuasive only."

If we analogize this to scriptures (as being comparable to a published opinion), the "doctrine" in the text would be equivalent to Ratio Decidendi, with the residual text being Obiter Dicta (which can contain "mistakes of men").  The textual narrative is the framework, the tree from which the doctrinal fruit grows .

For me, this helps me reconcile the beauty of the doctrines with the presence of "errors."  For example, it is one thing to say that the Nephite record was not utterly "historically accurate" in its depiction of the Lamanites.  That they could have been, or actually were, "racist" or "ethnocentric" in their views of the Lamanites.  See, e.g., here:

The Book of Mormon had an editor.  Perhaps Mormon was sufficiently inspired to craft a narrative that contains pure "doctrine" while also addressing the errors and flaws of those who sought to discern and obey those doctrines.

Thanks,

-Smac

It's certainly understandable that one who views the BoM as scripture, accepts that men make mistakes and likely made mistakes in putting together the work, are also unwilling to accept that those mistakes can be meaningful to teaching or doctrine.  It's quite an assumption to make.  But, again, I get why it's made.  Of course the problem is, since there are likely mistakes, no one can really know what the nature of those mistakes are.  But again, I get why people are claiming to know.  

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1 minute ago, stemelbow said:

Thanks, Duncan, for your views.  I think it gets fairly murky to start accusing Roberts of losing his testimony or faith or whatever.  After he pushed for the Church to focus on addressing difficulties, seemingly out of frustration with him, the Church sent him on a mission...and he accepted..gone for 5 years.  .  And from what it appears, he worked his pants off for the Church.  If during that time, he had lost faith in the BoM, or the Church or movement, it certainly doesn't show.  I think it's pretty fair to conclude he gave his all to the Church, at least as much can be expected from a human, until he died.  That says something about how he viewed truth claims that the BoM being scripture.  No matter how far we take his criticisms and concerns, it's obvious he never gave it all up. But there does appear to be nuance, as people 5 years ago liked to say, and a heavy dose of what appears to be "hey the Church does good, we've got something for others to benefit from, there is inspiration in the scriptures..."  and the like.  Part of that, I suppose, rests squarely on the believability and interpretation of Lloyd's journal entries.

that's fair, I think he was a tough individual. He had a tough childhood so I guess he had to be. He almost quit being a GA in the 1890's due to politics and that's a a bold move, the church world today would lose their minds of someone quit being a GA. Someone I like was one of his contemporaries, Elder Rulon S. Wells, he served a few years longer than Elder Roberts but he didn't seem to attract much if any attention to his service.

One thing about Elder Roberts or anyone is this idea of living on borrowed light, like it's fine to believe or not his testimony or anyone's but at some point you should get your own. Like, I am not going to quit the Church based on one man or join the Church based on one man, it should be between myself and God, take what you hear, study but ask God and go from there

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

He did a lot of uncharacteristic things -- uncharacteristic of a general authority.

He championed the role of the Seventy as a General Authority when we expect general authorities to be rather understated in their appointments.

He had published a picture of himself crossing the plains.  

He disguised himself as a tramp to recover the bodies of two slain missionaries and then had a picture taken of himself as a tramp and had it published. 

He publicly opposed the Brethren for opposing his efforts to run for the US House of Representatives and that of apostate apostle Moses Thatcher.

He wrote novels.

He published a history of the church but freely edited out objectionable stuff -- contrary to historical standards.

And more.  

And then, when he had his crisis of faith, he expected an arcade-like revelation.  Put in a dime and get a revelation. He set it up for that, even though he probably knew none of the Brethren were all that conversant with the the doctrines of the Book of Mormon or its history or story line. 

Jack Welch has championed him as a life-time believer but I don't think he was.  And it doesn't bother me.  Richard Lyman was kicked out for decades of secret adultery (general authorities who traveled with him on Church business would complain about his crudity); Moses Thatcher for apostasy.; Joseph Fielding Smith (the Patriarch not the President) for homosexuality; John A Taylor for apostasy; Matthias Cowley for apostasy;  George Lee for apostasy at a time he was a secret pedophile; James Hamula, for reasons I know and which plagued him while he was a general authority but I don't think are public.   Shows the church works despite the failures of men.  Helps me to understand the role of revelation in the Church.  

 

 

don't forget Orson Whitney and his womenly friends and whoever "****" was, a friend but who? he had to give up reincarnation to become a GA, I am not sure what the brethren thought about that though

I don't know what the situation was with Elder Hamula but he divorced his wife

Edited by Duncan

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4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

He did a lot of uncharacteristic things -- uncharacteristic of a general authority.

He championed the role of the Seventy as a General Authority when we expect general authorities to be rather understated in their appointments.

I've never gotten the impression that General Authorities were to be understated in their appointments.  Do you think his push for that view was a successful one since it appears to be, today, that they are anything but understated?  

4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

He had published a picture of himself crossing the plains.  

uh...huh?  What does this have to do with....

4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

He disguised himself as a tramp to recover the bodies of two slain missionaries and then had a picture taken of himself as a tramp and had it published. 

So you say he had a picture taken, or someone took it?  This incident does seem to have been a significant one in terms of getting him Church notoriety, but it appears you think he anticipated the notoriety.  

4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

He publicly opposed the Brethren for opposing his efforts to run for the US House of Representatives and that of apostate apostle Moses Thatcher.

Well, ok.  

4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

He wrote novels.

He published a history of the church but freely edited out objectionable stuff -- contrary to historical standards.

He wasn't a historian.  I think that's typically what people use as reason for his lack of historical standards.  

4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

And more.  

And then, when he had his crisis of faith, he expected an arcade-like revelation.  Put in a dime and get a revelation. He set it up for that, even though he probably knew none of the Brethren were all that conversant with the the doctrines of the Book of Mormon or its history or story line. 

It seems to me, he really wanted the brethren to take the issues seriously as he thought if they ignored and simply relished their testimonies, then the younger generations for future ones would be lost.  He was most definitely wrong about that.  

4 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

Jack Welch has championed him as a life-time believer but I don't think he was.  And it doesn't bother me.  Richard Lyman was kicked out for decades of secret adultery (general authorities who traveled with him on Church business would complain about his crudity); Moses Thatcher for apostasy.; Joseph Fielding Smith (the Patriarch not the President) for homosexuality; John A Taylor for apostasy; Matthias Cowley for apostasy;  George Lee for apostasy at a time he was a secret pedophile; James Hamula, for reasons I know and which plagued him while he was a general authority but I don't think are public.   Shows the church works despite the failures of men.  Helps me to understand the role of revelation in the Church.  

It helps point out the lack of inspiration in the Church--or rather the really human, normal organization the Church is.  You got me curious about what you know about the James Hamula stuff--but I realize that's just unhealthy curiosity.  

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Just now, stemelbow said:

I've never gotten the impression that General Authorities were to be understated in their appointments.  Do you think his push for that view was a successful one since it appears to be, today, that they are anything but understated?  

uh...huh?  What does this have to do with....

So you say he had a picture taken, or someone took it?  This incident does seem to have been a significant one in terms of getting him Church notoriety, but it appears you think he anticipated the notoriety.  

Well, ok.  

He wasn't a historian.  I think that's typically what people use as reason for his lack of historical standards.  

It seems to me, he really wanted the brethren to take the issues seriously as he thought if they ignored and simply relished their testimonies, then the younger generations for future ones would be lost.  He was most definitely wrong about that.  

It helps point out the lack of inspiration in the Church--or rather the really human, normal organization the Church is.  You got me curious about what you know about the James Hamula stuff--but I realize that's just unhealthy curiosity.  

well, I want to know too!!!!!!!!! about Elder Hamula

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Posted (edited)
31 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

It's certainly understandable that one who views the BoM as scripture, accepts that men make mistakes and likely made mistakes in putting together the work, are also unwilling to accept that those mistakes can be meaningful to teaching or doctrine.  It's quite an assumption to make. 

I agree.  I'm not really a fan of declaring anything, other than Jesus Christ, to be perfect.  The doctrines of the Church are overwhelmingly good and beautiful and praiseworthy, but I'm not sure we have a complete and pristine understanding of them.  

  • "For now we see through a glass, darkly..."  (1 Cor. 13:12)
  • "That which is of God is light; and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, receiveth more light; and that light groweth brighter and brighter until the perfect day."  (D&C 50:24)
  • "We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God." (AoF 1:9)

We still have a long way to go.  We still have a lot to learn.

Quote

But, again, I get why it's made.  Of course the problem is, since there are likely mistakes, no one can really know what the nature of those mistakes are.  But again, I get why people are claiming to know.  

Fair points.  

I'm not particularly worried about infallibility on the one side, or errors on the other.  I've previously said this:

Quote

Some years later I graduated from high school and joined the Army.  During my training I had a series of written communications with my dad in which I asked him about all sorts of things about the Church, the Gospel, and so on.  I asked him what had happened to the Sword of Laban.  I asked him about polygamy.  I asked him about how women felt about polygamy (those who actually experienced it).  I asked him about blacks and the priesthood.  I asked him about Joseph Smith's polygamy.  I asked about the Liahona.  Anything that piqued my interest.

My dad, who had a large library of church history books (and also, IIRC, a set of "Infobase" CD-ROMS with additional materials), and who was our ward's Gospel Doctrine teacher at the time, wrote me long, detailed responses to my inquiries, with references and everything.  It was an amazing experience.  I was exhilarated at finding out that there were deep and complex and nuanced details about the simple Gospel stories I had been taught as a child (mostly by my mom, who created a series of illustrated church history lessons she kept in a looseleaf binder, which she used to teach lessons to us every Sunday).  And that the beautiful and profound truths of the Gospel can be accepted as true despite the many flaws and errors of the Saints (even terrible things like the MMM).  He closed most of his letters with an exhortation that I continue to study and be curious about the Gospel, but that I retain in focus what he called the "planks" of a testimony, which were, IIRC, that God lives, that Jesus Christ is His Son, that the Priesthood is His Power, and The Book of Mormon was translated by the gift and power of God.  Everything else, he said, is "parsley on the side of the plate" (or some such similar metaphor).

I will always be grateful to my parents.  To my mother, who through sheer force of will taught her children many lessons about Church history and the scriptures.  And to my father, who helped me in a time of cognitive dissonance, who taught me that faith and knowledge are complimentary to each other, that studying scholarship pertaining to the Church and to the Gospel can and should augment faith in the Gospel, even though such efforts have required me to move beyond the simplified and idyllic version I was taught as a child.  But that is, I think, as it should be.  As Paul put it: "When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things."

My parents "inoculated" me by teaching me to study through reading and prayer, and to seek to understand difficult truths in measured and circumspect and faithful ways.

Like my dad, I try to keep my faith centered on the fundamentals.  God lives.  Jesus Christ is His Son.  The Restoration, exemplified by the Book of Mormon and the restoration of the priesthood, really happened, and continues to unfold.

God is at the helm.  I believe that.

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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20 minutes ago, champatsch said:

On grammatical aspects of the Book of Mormon that I know well, which B.H. Roberts mentioned as an issue (see, e.g., Defense of the Faith and the Saints [1907], 1:295), he was hampered by not having access to a number of resources which we enjoy today.

Until recently, it was quite difficult to check whether usage might have occurred in earlier English. Now we have access to tens of thousands of digitized, searchable texts published in the 1500s, 1600s, and 1700s. This makes it so we can finally check for grammatical correspondence with comparative ease.

When we look at all of the Book of Mormon's "bad grammar", we realize that a lot of it is not of the kind that Joseph Smith would've produced out of his own language. In other words, several types of bad grammar point away from JS as the author of the Book of Mormon. BHR couldn't have figured this out in his day without spending decades on the matter, time that he didn't have, given all his other responsibilities and interests.

This has general applicability to other concerns about the Book of Mormon that he raised.

I'm sorry if this is very common knowledge, but do you have any references for this?

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Tacenda said:

I'm sorry if this is very common knowledge, but do you have any references for this?

Mention of some of these things are found [proximity agreement!] in some of my articles. More will be published in the future. You can start here, but you might want to wait till things are brought together into a more coherent whole.

One way to divide up the Book of Mormon's bad grammar is into the language JS could've been responsible for and the language he probably wasn't responsible for.

As two simple examples, he could've been responsible for "had ought to" language; he probably wasn't responsible for more than 20 instances of object they.

Edited by champatsch
Pointing out the grammatical error I made: "things are found".
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57 minutes ago, Duncan said:

that's fair, I think he was a tough individual. He had a tough childhood so I guess he had to be. He almost quit being a GA in the 1890's due to politics and that's a a bold move, the church world today would lose their minds of someone quit being a GA. Someone I like was one of his contemporaries, Elder Rulon S. Wells, he served a few years longer than Elder Roberts but he didn't seem to attract much if any attention to his service.

One thing about Elder Roberts or anyone is this idea of living on borrowed light, like it's fine to believe or not his testimony or anyone's but at some point you should get your own. Like, I am not going to quit the Church based on one man or join the Church based on one man, it should be between myself and God, take what you hear, study but ask God and go from there

Sunstone magazine used to have a section in the back called "An Olive Leaf." Two of my favorites are from B.H. Roberts:

https://www.sunstonemagazine.com/pdf/133-56.pdf

https://www.sunstonemagazine.com/pdf/145-80.pdf

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, stemelbow said:

I've never gotten the impression that General Authorities were to be understated in their appointments.  Do you think his push for that view was a successful one since it appears to be, today, that they are anything but understated?  

uh...huh?  What does this have to do with....

So you say he had a picture taken, or someone took it?  This incident does seem to have been a significant one in terms of getting him Church notoriety, but it appears you think he anticipated the notoriety.  

Well, ok.  

He wasn't a historian.  I think that's typically what people use as reason for his lack of historical standards.  

It seems to me, he really wanted the brethren to take the issues seriously as he thought if they ignored and simply relished their testimonies, then the younger generations for future ones would be lost.  He was most definitely wrong about that.  

It helps point out the lack of inspiration in the Church--or rather the really human, normal organization the Church is.  You got me curious about what you know about the James Hamula stuff--but I realize that's just unhealthy curiosity.  

I think you're just trying to split hairs just to do so.  

I think my facts emphasize the preeminent role of free will.  

Edited by Bob Crockett
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58 minutes ago, Kevin Christensen said:

I for one did carefully read the 1985 publication by Signature books.   Whether a person finds it "brutal" depends entirely on their preparation and inclinations.  I was very well prepared, and consequently, not troubled at all.  Othello, for example, found the case against Desdemona, to be "brutal" as far as he was concerned.  And that seemed to justify his own brutal judgment.  One can consider exactly the same information and have a completely different response though, by having different soil, nurture, and time involved.  That is why I also linked to Jack Welch's 1985 detailed "point-for-point" response to the Roberts Study.  And we have learned a great deal since 1985.  Welch's Legal Cases of the Book of Mormon, for instance, has much more relevant to Roberts' argument regarding "Sherem, Nehor, and Korihor."  And I mentioned Stubb's work on languages, now he has evidence not only for Hebrew influence, but also Phonecian (Mulekite) and Egyptian.  And Nibley,  Sorenson, Gardner, the Astons on the Arabian journey, Matt Bowen's work on language, John Clark and Matt Roper on how over time, the overwhelming tendency for charges against the Book of Mormon to resolve, and much much more that B. H. Roberts could not consider.  And I mentioned the Lidar surveys.  Of course, if Othello has already smothered Desdemona, that crucial and relevant evidence comes late.  He can perhaps say, "Well, you can see why I was upset.  What would you have done in my place?"  But it should be clear that he was not being completely objective, following the evidence where it led, but rather, was a victim of his own pride and lack of faith.

FWIW,

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

I read it and thought it was "brutal" perhaps, but only because it came from a general authority.  The substance seemed kind of weak to me, but I have the benefit of a 100 years of thinking and research. 

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Posted (edited)
41 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

I think you're just trying to split hairs just to do so.  

I think my facts emphasize the preeminent role of free will.  

The illusion of free will.  Gotcha.  And you're right, there wasn't much to go back and forth on.  We disagree.

38 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

but I have the benefit of a 100 years of thinking and research. 

 

A hundred years?  Fewf!  Not many make it that long.  I would have guessed 81

Edited by stemelbow

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1 hour ago, stemelbow said:

The illusion of free will.  Gotcha.  And you're right, there wasn't much to go back and forth on.  We disagree.

 

A hundred years?  Fewf!  Not many make it that long.  I would have guessed 81

You're a sarcastic fellow!  On such mundane stuff, too!  How boring is this discussion?

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5 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

You're a sarcastic fellow!  On such mundane stuff, too!  How boring is this discussion?

Only the boring get bored.  😃

Anyway, I halfway appreciate your view on Roberts--thinking you're condemnation of his ego a bit overwrought.  

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3 hours ago, Bob Crockett said:

He did a lot of uncharacteristic things -- uncharacteristic of a general authority.

He championed the role of the Seventy as a General Authority when we expect general authorities to be rather understated in their appointments.

He had published a picture of himself crossing the plains.  

He disguised himself as a tramp to recover the bodies of two slain missionaries and then had a picture taken of himself as a tramp and had it published. 

He publicly opposed the Brethren for opposing his efforts to run for the US House of Representatives and that of apostate apostle Moses Thatcher.

He wrote novels.

He published a history of the church but freely edited out objectionable stuff -- contrary to historical standards.

And more.  

And then, when he had his crisis of faith, he expected an arcade-like revelation.  Put in a dime and get a revelation. He set it up for that, even though he probably knew none of the Brethren were all that conversant with the the doctrines of the Book of Mormon or its history or story line. 

A few of these things smack of presentism, but yes, they'd be uncharacteristic of a general authority TODAY.

I read a while back that he almost left the Church as a youth but was convinced to shape up.   He'd been into drinking, and troublemaking.
Possibly by Bishop Edwin Woolley or by Edwin's son John W. Woolley (Spencer Kimball's uncle) who was Robert's stepfather after marrying his mother as a plural wife and is considered the father of Mormon fundamentalists.

 

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On 7/16/2020 at 9:48 AM, Fair Dinkum said:

Here is his full quote and another just prior to his passing:

 

This cannot be said enough and it should be shouted from the  house tops.

Well at least in Utah.

Well maybe just Provo.

;)

 

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6 hours ago, JLHPROF said:

A few of these things smack of presentism, but yes, they'd be uncharacteristic of a general authority TODAY.

I read a while back that he almost left the Church as a youth but was convinced to shape up.   He'd been into drinking, and troublemaking.
Possibly by Bishop Edwin Woolley or by Edwin's son John W. Woolley (Spencer Kimball's uncle) who was Robert's stepfather after marrying his mother as a plural wife and is considered the father of Mormon fundamentalists.

 

I don't agree with the presentism charge. BH Roberts was a narcissist. But he did a lot of good.   Lots.   I admire 97 percent of his output.  

The whole story about getting his picture taken as a tramp was pretty compelling. Locating the photographer when they were rare.  Dressing up in a costume.  Lining up publication and circulation.  A general authority.  A.Porter Rockwell wanna be with pretensions. 

 

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John Dehlin did an interview with the author of this thesis FYI.

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, Kevin Christensen said:

I for one did carefully read the 1985 publication by Signature books.   Whether a person finds it "brutal" depends entirely on their preparation and inclinations.  I was very well prepared, and consequently, not troubled at all.

Roberts did say he wrote the study "from the viewpoint of an open mind." Admittedly, it will not trouble any who, on account of their "preparation and inclinations," do not approach it from that viewpoint. True believers are seldom troubled by disconfirming evidence.

You mentioned John W. Welch's "detailed 'point-for-point' response to the Roberts Study." Welch is actually a good example of what I just described. Here he is examining the Deutero-Isaiah problem:

Quote

Because the Book of Mormon expressly indicates that Isaiah wrote Isaiah 2–14 and 48–54, few additional questions about the authorship of those chapters need to be asked in LDS circles. Moreover, even in scholarly terms, any bearing that the questions of Isaiah authorship might have on the Book of Mormon must begin and end with the acknowledgment that we probably lack sufficient evidence to answer all those questions conclusively. For Latter-day Saints, this ultimately leaves the question of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon, as it has always been, in the realm of faith and as a matter of personal testimony. (Source)

As always, the message is "Nothing to see here; move along." If the Book of Mormon "expressly indicates" something, then "few additional questions" need to be asked about it. According to this mindset, all contrary evidence is perforce wrong or inconclusive, while personal testimony is always probative.

In the same article, Welch writes: "If the Book of Mormon is accepted on other sufficient grounds as a true historical account [namely, "personal testimony"], then this record in turn adds new evidence concerning the perplexing issues of Isaiah authorship that has not been available to or considered by the scholarly world." If the Book of Mormon says Isaiah of Jerusalem wrote Isaiah 48—54, then the matter is settled. Nothing to see here.

So it is with Welch's response to Roberts. I encourage people to read it side-by-side with Roberts's paper. Welch provides a masterclass in apologetics.

(That said, I do think his chapter in Legal Cases in the Book of Mormon comparing Sherem, Nehor, and Korihor is very good and expect Roberts would appreciate it too.)

Edited by Nevo
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        6. What does the existence of the precious truths in the Pearl of Great Pric teach us about the Prophet Joseph Smith? (1 mark)
      a) He no longer needed the power of God to help him translate.
      b) He was a prophet, seer, and revelator.
      c) He is the only prophet of this dispensation that can receive new scripture.
        7. As watchmen on the tower, modern prophets have a responsibility to ____ (1 mark)
      a) warn us of coming dangers
      b) stop Satan from tempting members of the Church
      c) change truth to fit modern times
        8. What is a bishop's or branch president's main responsibility when a teenager confesses sin to him? (1 mark)
      a) To prevent the person from being part of the Church
      b) To help the person receive forgiveness of the sins and regain peace of mind
      c) To inflict severe consequences and punishments from sinning
        9. Who visited the Prophet Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in the Kirtland Temple to restore priesthood keys? (1 mark)
      a) Jeremiah, Isaiah, and Malachi
      b) Moses, Elias, and Elijah
      c) Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
        10. According to the Doctrine and Covenants, what are tithing funds used for? (1 mark)
      a) They are the main fund the Church uses to support the poor and the needy.
      b) They are used to build temples and to accomplish the work of the Lord.
      c) They are used to pay ward and branch members for serving in the Church.
        11. While the Prophet Joseph Smith was falsely imprisoned in Liberty Jail, the Lord taught him that adversity and affliction
      (1 mark)
      a) will not occur if we trust in God
      b) are always a consequence of our poor choices
      c) can give us experience and be for our good
        12. Which of the following is a true statement about Relief Society? (1 mark)
      a) It was divinely organized to assist in the work of salvation.
      b) It was established during the trek west to help Saints who were suffering.
      c) It did not exist during the lifetime of the Prophet Joseph Smith.
        13. A man and a woman will receive eternal life and glory if _____ (1 mark)
      a) they love each other more than they love themselves
      b) they keep the new and everlasting covenant of marriage they made in the temple
      c) they are married in the temple
        14. Why do our ancestors who die without having a knowledge of the gospel need us to perform ordinances for them in the temple?
      a) Without these ordinances, our ancestors cannot progress toward eternal life. (1 mark)
      b) Without these ordinances, our ancestors cannot be saved in any kingdom of glory.
      c} Without these ordinances, our ancestors will not be resurrected.
        15. Marriage between one man and one woman is the Lord's standing law. Wen is the only time plural marriage is justified?
      a) Wen there are more women than men in the Church (1 mark)
      b) Whenever local laws and traditions allow members to practice it without breaking the law
      c) When the Lord authorizes it through the priesthood keys given to the President of the Church
        16. When the President of the Church dies, which quorum becomes the presiding quorum of the Church? (1 mark)
      a) The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
      b) The Quorum of the First Presidency
      c) The Presiding Bishopric
        17. Which of the following shows the correct chronological order (first to last) of places the Saints were told to gather to? (1 mark}
      a) A stake in their homeland; Nauvoo, Illinois; Winter Quarters, Nebraska; Salt Lake City, Utah
      b) Nauvoo, Illinois; Winter Quarters, Nebraska; Salt Lake City, Utah; a stake in their homeland
      c) Winter Quarters, Nebraska; Nauvoo, Illinois; Salt Lake City, Utah; a stake in their homeland
        18. After the Savior visited the spirit world, what did righteous spirits there begin to do?
      a} They were all resurrected and began entering the highest kingdom of glory.
      b) They began performing ordinances for those who had not received them.
      c) They began teaching the gospel to those in spirit prison.
      (1 mark)
        19. According to Official Declaration 2, the Lord revealed that all worthy male Church members may ___ _ (1 mark)
      a) receive the ordinance of baptism
      b) serve a mission at age 18
      c) receive the priesthood and enjoy temple blessings
        20. What principle is emphasized in Doctrine and Covenants 121:36, 41-2? (1 mark)
      a) Priesthood holders can draw upon the powers of heaven only if they live righteously.
      b) lf we actively seek to learn through study and faith, our faith in Jesus Christ will increase.
      c) If we obey the Lord, He will always keep His promises to bless us.
        21. Which of the following accurately describes Heavenly Father? (1 mark)
      a) He is without feelings or emotions.
      b) He is a personage of Spirit and can dwell in us.
      c) He has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man's.
        22. Which of the following is a requirement for receiving exaltation in the celestial kingdom? (1 mark)
      a) Bearing testimony of the Savior is all that is needed.
      b) Receiving a patriarchal blessing
      c) Receiving and being valiant in the testimony of Jesus Christ
        23. Of the following groups, who will inherit the celestial kingdom? (1 mark)
      a) All children who die before they reach the age of accountability
      b) All members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
      c) All individuals who have been baptized
        24. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "God doesn't care how marriage is defined"? (1 mark)
      a) Ever individual born into morality is a child of God, and God loves each of us.
      b) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      c) God changes truth to meet the circumstances and needs of His children.
        25. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "It isn't as important for couples to have children today as it used to
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is the ideal setting for children to be born, reared, and nurtured.
      b) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
      c) God's commandment fr husbands and wives to have children remains in force today.
        26. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "As long as two individuals love each other, physical intimacy is
      acceptable"? (1 mark)
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is the ideal setting for children to be born, reared, and nurtured.
      b) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      c) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
        27. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "As governments continue to redefine marriage, God's definition of
      marriage will change to reflect the values of modern society"? (1 mark)
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      b) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
      c) Changes in the civil law do not change the moral law that God has established.
        28. Which eternal truth corrects the following worldly philosophy: "The only purpose of marriage is for adults to find fulfillment and
      happiness"? (1 mark)
      a) Marriage between a man and a woman is the ideal setting for children to be born, reared, and nurtured.
      b) Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
      c) God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between a man and a woman who are
      lawfully wedded as husband and wife.
      Section name: Explain Doctrine _
      Instructions: Write your answer on a piece of paper. Compare your response with the correct answer received from your teacher. After self-grading the explain-doctrine question, bubble in your answer sheet.
      Self-grade your answer for each question:
      a. Yes, I explained this in my response.
      b. No, I left this out of my response.
        29. What is an example of a truth that was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith? Explain why the truth you chose can help you receive eternal life. (1 mark)
        30. What is an example of an ordinance that was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith? Explain why the ordinance you chose can help you receive eternal life. (1 mark)
        31. What is an example of priesthood authority that was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith? Explain why this authority of the priesthood can help you receive eternal life. (1 mark)
        32. Share your personal thoughts on the importance of the Prophet Joseph Smith. (1 mark)
    • By blueglass
      Really impressed with Kate Holbrook's interview with Terryl Givens.  She's thoughtful, candid, and inspiring as she speaks about her persistence to get a PhD and work full time for the church as a manger of church history.  She's working on a project with Lisa Tate on the history of the young women's organization.  
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2G7k1ggz7k&feature=em-uploademail
      One thing I caught that I hadn't heard before was when Terryl asks her about whether she felt a sense of loss and a sense of jubilation when studying the history of the RS.  Joseph envisioned a more collaborative relationship with the male priesthood, more autonomy, abundance of spiritual gifts, authority to administer ordinances including healing by the laying of hands.  Kate responds that she understands the hyperfocus on this time period, but she feels there is a lost opportunity in recognizing the accomplishments of the women of the 20th century - she then backtracks a bit and says:
      "I don't want to say that their isn't a difference, between - a time when a woman was able to say I have this terrific idea she's say the General RS president and she goes and talks to the president of the church about it.  That is certainly different than now, when she goes and talks to someone in the presiding bishopric, and it has to go through several levels to even get to the president.  There is a loss, and there is a difference."
      I had no idea that the General RS president did not have direct access to the quorum of the 12, and first presidency?  Why in 3 heavens does the general RS president still have such an auxiliary level of access to the presiding apostolic quorum, access to financial influence through Pres Bishopric perhaps, but no real budget to work with?  No seat on the correlation committee?  
      Kate has a great story about how Ardeth Greene Kapp (General YW president 84-92') while receiving a downpour of revelation would use innovative, clever ways and technology to push the ideas upward through the hierarchy.  
    • By FearlessFixxer
      http://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2017/11/26/commentary-the-gaslighting-within-mormonism-must-stop/
    • By Bernard Gui
      On a thread that was closed for not supplying a topic for discussion.....
      I listened to the podcast. It takes apart Elder Packer's CES address where he defined what is a faithful/faith-promoting history of the Church.
      He calls his blog "Radio Free Mormon broadcasting behind enemy lines." Who is his enemy? It appears his enemy is the Church and its leaders.
      An hour-long monologue making a case that Boyd Packer was immoral, unethical, and a liar who worshipped a false God based on his CES talk about church history and Leonard Arrington. Also accuses the General Authorities of publishing books for the purpose of making a profit. He doesn't like Elder Packer who is portrayed as an evil man. Also dredges up the Gordon Hinckley's "I don't know" interview to question his integrity. Church leaders are part of a deceptive conspiracy to cover up the truth of church history.
      Some here knew Leonard Arrington. I have enjoyed his writings. Is it fair to say he was demoted from his position as Church Historian to a professor at BYU? Is it fair to claim Elder Packer was an unethical liar?
    • By canard78
      Elder Maynes CES devotional went into extensive detail on the first vision accounts last night. 
      Starts at 35:20:
      https://www.lds.org/broadcasts/the-truth-restored?lang=eng&_r=1
      I'm delighted that the essays and these topics are gradually becoming more mainstream. My mum (a primary president) even plans to use parts of the vision essay in sharing time this month (it's the "truth restored" section of the manual). I'll share this talk and article with her too as it's got some useful suggestions.
      A couple of questions: 
      - He said Joseph "wrote or dictated" the four accounts. Is that the best description of how the official account was written? I'll have to look up the Bushman reference I'm thinking of as I seem to remember him saying somewhere that the official version was a bit more of a co-creation or collaboration with Rigdon. I might be misremembering that so will try to check it.
      - He also says that it's the best documented vision in history. I wondered what the other contenders would be. 
      Any other thoughts?
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