Book of Mormon Notes– How deep can you dig?

2010, August 17

“A Critique/ Response to Utah Christian Publications’ Webpage ‘Mormon Claims Answered’ | The Book of Mormon'” by grego

“A Critique/ Response to Utah Christian Publications’ Webpage ‘Mormon Claims Answered’ | The Book of Mormon'”

(c) 2010

The article being critiqued can be found at: . I still have a hard time understanding whether Christian leaders are still so ignorant, or if they are knowing, but expect their followers to be ignorant. Why? Many of the following parts of the article speaking about the problems of the Book of Mormon are seriously pathetic. Many of the rest have been answered years ago, but notwithstanding what the research and logic might say, the proponents of the problems push ahead anyway… I suggest that in the future, Book of Mormon critics stay away from these types of questions, and ask questions that are… well, actually questions.

From “Mormon Claims Answered”:
“[T]he B. of M. does have many contradictions, absurdities and unreasonable statements. The following are examples beginning on page one:

1. I Nephi 1:1-4 says Lehi, a devout Jew living in Jerusalem, kept a sacred record in the Egyptian language. But Jews were enemies of the Egyptians in 600 BC. King Josiah was killed in a battle with Egypt about 608 BC, and Judah paid tribute to Egypt after that (II Chron. 35:20-36:4). Since Hebrew was the sacred language and the Lord was then “against Egypt” (Jer. 46:1-2), no devout Jew would write in Egyptian.
grego: Once more, I don’t understand why questions that have been answered long ago are still hanging around. Take a look at this: . This article is in a major Book of Mormon apologetic publication/ website; why couldn’t Utah Christian Publications find it? Do you see the date on the article? It’s 1996. The answer to this Book of Mormon “problem” was publicly published 14 years ago! Perhaps a good Christian would like to inform Utah Christian Publications about this?


2. I Nephi 2:5-8 says that the River Laman emptied into the Red Sea. But, there are no rivers in all of Arabia now or in recorded history, and no river empties into the Red Sea! The Red Sea is a body of water connected to the Mediterranean Sea on the north and to the Indian Ocean on the south. When it rains, which is rare, a wadi (a dry riverbed) will carry water for a short time. But a wadi is not a river.
grego: What is it called when a dry riverbed carries water: _________? (river)

See here: , and here: , at “But a perennial stream is not required to fulfill Nephi’s description or Lehi’s exclamation. Lehi said “continually running,” not “continually flowing.” A Near Eastern wadi’s streambed can run all the way to the sea whether water happens to be flowing in it or not. I have no doubt that water was flowing when Lehi made his statement (which may have been during the winter months). But whether or not water was flowing in that stream six months later does not make or break the issue in terms of identifying the site of the valley of Lemuel. The streambed itself would have been a continually running course to the ocean for the wadi’s water, whether seasonal or perennial.”

Also, no Hebrew named his child “Sam” (v. 5). “Sam” is an American name, but not a Hebrew name.
grego: From :
“While Sam is a perfectly good Egyptian name, it is also the normal Arabic form of Shem, the son of Noah.”
Sam Tawi (OW), Egyptian “uniter of the lands,” title taken by the brother of Nehri upon mounting the throne.”[Nibley: Lehi in Des.]

From :
Sam, brother of Nephi, came to the New World with his father Lehi and family (see 1 Nephi 2:5; 2 Nephi 5:6; Alma 3:6). Critics have suggested that Joseph Smith simply used the common English diminutive of Samuel. What these critics failed to realize is that the name Samuel, which appears in the English Bible, is from the Hebrew name (Å mû’el) comprised of two elements, Shem (“name”) + El (“God”).
The name Sam is attested on a bronze ringmounted seal dated to the seventh century BC60 While others have read this name as Shem, in paleo- Hebrew there is no distinction in writing between s and š (the latter written sh in English). (It is the same letter used at the beginning of the name Sariah.) Various dialects of Hebrew pronounced this letter in different ways anciently. From the story in Judges 12:6, we find that some of the tribe of Joseph pronounced it s instead of š, reminding us that Lehi was a descendant of Joseph (see 1 Nephi 5:14).

(The other questions follow the same thread—“problems” long answered. Here is one more for fun:)

7. In II Nephi 3:3 and 23, Joseph, son of Lehi, was promised “thy seed shall not be destroyed,” but Mormon 8:2-5 and Ether 4:3 say that the Nephites were “all destroyed.” That included all of Joseph’s descendants! A “god” who would make promises and then break them is certainly not immutable or unchangeable as M.D., p. 318, says (See II Tim. 2:13). And what sort of foreknowledge or omniscience did He possess when He entrusted “the fullness of the gospel” to people who were annihilated? Some LDS writers have tried to explain this contradiction by claiming that “destroyed” does not mean “annihilated.” But Moroni said that he alone was left of all the Nephites, and that there was none left but Lamanites. If the Nephites were not annihilated, then the B. of M. does not demonstrate the “superior clearness” like Mormons claim (M.D. p. 199; A. of F., p. 274). Furthermore, if any Nephites survived, where are they?
grego: The Book of Mormon clearly states—in more than one place—the answer to this question. It’s amazing how critics can find the most obscure verses and problems, yet somehow miss the answers blatantly jumping off the pages… Ahhh, perhaps they’ve never read the book??

Here it is: it’s very likely that descendants from everyone was among the Lamanites.

9. II Nephi 5:16 says that the Nephite (see #8) nation built a temple like Solomon’s less than 19 years after their arrival in America (I Nephi 18:23; II Nephi 5:28). By contrast, Solomon’s temple took seven and a half years to build (I Kings 6:1, 38) with 30,000 levied Israelites and 150,000 hewers of stone and carriers (I Kings 5:13-15). 550 chiefs and 3300 subordinates supervised the work (I Kings 5:16; 9:23). Of these, 3600 were Canaanites and 250 were Israelites (II Chron. 2:17; 8:10). How did those few Nephites build a temple like Solomon’s in such a short time? II Nephi 5:15 also says that all manner of wood, iron, copper, brass, steel, gold, silver, and precious ores were found here in great abundance. But, the next verse says that the American temple was built like Solomon’s except for the precious materials which “were not found upon the land!”
grego: Please check the wording of the verse—you won’t see it read “just like Solomon’s”; you will see something “after the manner”. Especially with such a small group, why build a huge temple just like Solomon’s? How? Where would they get all the same things? The Nephites didn’t.

15. In Jacob 7:27, the French word “Adieu” concludes the book of Jacob. How did a French word get into the English translation of the Reformed Egyptian language? The B. of M. dates Jacob between 544 and 421 B.C. The French language did not even exist until around 700 A.D.
grego: Will somebody please put the critics out of their misery! You could probably find the answer to this question on at least 100 top Book of Mormon websites and more.

20. Alma 13:1 says, “And again my brethren, I would cite your minds forward to the time when the Lord God gave these commandments.” Was this time past or still future?
grego: It was in the past, of course. It was also in the future (“forward”) from the time that was being talked about.

21. Alma 18:26-28 teaches that God is a “Great Spirit.” But Mormonism today teaches that God the Father and Jesus Christ have bodies of flesh and bone (Doctrine and Covenants 130:22).
grego: Check the context, eh. Ammon is teaching king Lamoni (not the Book of Mormon teaching the readers) that the God that king Lamoni knows is the same God the Nephites worship. He uses the king’s current understanding to aid his explaining, and adds more to it. By the way, God is a great spirit; He also has a body. Wow.


25. Helaman 14:20 and 27 say that darkness covered the whole earth for three days at Jesus’ death. Compare that with the three hours mentioned in Matt. 27:45; Mark 15:33; and Luke 23:44.
grego: Um, three hours of destruction, three days of darkness in a local location somewhere in the Americas. Three hours in Jerusalem—a few thousand miles or so away. Not the same place, not the same thing.

And on and on the questions come…

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