Book of Mormon Notes– How deep can you dig?

2008, November 28

Book of Mormon | Critique: Why Mormon Couldn’t Know the Lamanites Got Lost (from Brant Gardner’s “Mormon’s Editorial Method and Meta-Message”) by grego

Book of Mormon | Critique: Why Mormon Couldn’t Know the Lamanites Got Lost
(from Brant Gardner’s “Mormon’s Editorial Method and Meta-Message”)
by grego

Brant Gardner:
“At times, Mormon must tell us “history” that no one could have known. For example, Mormon tells the story of Limhi’s people escaping from the Lamanites and moving people and animals into the wilderness. Although they were pursued, Mosiah 22: 16 confidently tells us: “And after they had pursued the two days, they could no longer follow their tracks; therefore they were lost in the wilderness.” Peering back through time to what can be known of this situation, it is likely that Limhi’s people would be aware that they were being followed for two days and that thereafter they were not. However, when Mormon tells us that it was because the Lamanites could no longer find their tracks, he is telling us something that his sources could not know. The Limhites would not have known whether or not their tracks were visible, and certainly wouldn’t have known what was in the Lamanite mind when they cut off pursuit. It is equally likely that the Lamanites realized that it simply wasn’t worth the effort, as the Lamanites were in possession of a fully functioning city into which they could easily move their own people and begin to be productive.”
http://www.fairlds.org/FAIR_Conferences/2008_Mormons_Editorial_Method_and_Meta-Message.html

Whenever I have a choice between Brant Gardner and Mormon, I start out assuming “Mormon” as the correct answer; and even after numerous times, I must admit that that method hasn’t failed once, yet.

It doesn’t fail here, either.

See Mosiah 23:30 (-37) for why someone “could have known”, and why Mormon could, and did, know the rest of the story and put it in the Book of Mormon. Remember, also, that Mormon does not include every detail of history in the text; I suggest not assuming he can’t know just because he doesn’t tell you how he knows.


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