The Words of the Book of Mormon

This post is research that goes directly against the claims in the Book of Mormon. If you find that offensive, please skip this post. Thanks.

 

So this research is VERY interesting to me. I have found the arguments made by Mormon apologists and by “anti” sources persuasive. I would see the side by side comparison of View of the Hebrews and The Book of Mormon and the two books seemed pretty similar. Then I would read about Chiasmus in the Book of Mormon and that made it sound like the BOM could potentially be an ancient text.

This research has potential to be a completely different level of research compared to arguments on both sides (at least potentially). The reason I say this is because this research is analyzing thousands of books and comparing the phraseology in thousands of texts to the phraseology of the Book of Mormon. I also love that the author tells people, in his own personal blog, to be cautious about the results of his research until other researchers have peer-reviewed his work. This suggests, to me, that this man is actually interested in scientific truth, rather than being right (at least compared to many researchers who are only trying to prove their predetermined conclusion correct). Anyway, it is pretty mind-blowing for me and I am thinking about it a lot right now, so check it out!

If you can’t watch the whole thing, watch starting at about minute 38, where he presents his original research. Let me know what you think!

 

 

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3 Responses to The Words of the Book of Mormon

  1. Jennifer says:

    hey Alicia,
    just got done watching most of it. kind of skimmed through repetitive examples etc. to speed it up. I’ll give you my opinion and of of course that’s all it is. I”m not a language expert or anything as you know, but I have researched it a bit. For a while I thought maybe Joseph Smith was actually reading everything right off of the urim and thummin when he was using that, or his seer stone when using that. I think Joseph Smith did have a bright mind. Maybe he was even super good at memorizing and able to recall chapters of Isaiah etc. I don’t know. But it does seem to me that at the early age when he dictated the Book of Mormon, he was not going around doing a bunch of research and learning Hebrew etc. The scribes talked about how he’d spell proper names out sometimes (there’s really good evidence in what i’ve looked at that he was a horrible speller) etc and so that’s interesting to me. I wonder if there was a way God was helping some Semitic elements to remain because the Semitic elements are strongest in the original manuscript (well what little survived). I’ve only listened to Chris once and not super carefully so correct me if I’m wrong, but Chris seems to do things like take something like Nahom which in Hebrew would be NHM and then find thousands of parallels all over the word when you take words and remove the vowels etc. But to me this simple statistical analysis misses a bunch. Like the etymology (hope i’m using the right word) matches with those non-biblical words too. Jershon was a place name. Irreantum was a place of waters etc. He mentioned Anthon’s book and I tried to look at the similar words and stuff and some seemed similar. I can’t remember which one was the same meaning in Syriac, but even that would make sense to me because Syria seems so geographically close. And like he says if it was a conspiracy it’s not a likely one (and there’s no evidence Joseph had access to Anthon’s book either probably???) Joseph Smith didn’t send Martin Harris to Anthon at first anyway. Anthon was recommended by someone else.

    Back to what I imagine about the translation process. I’m not sure how much information fit on those plates. I haven’t tried to make plates like that myself out of tin and see how much they weigh etc. (I’d actually like to), but I’m with the witnesses who didn’t think they could be. Even with all the witnesses being mostly related I find their stories credible, especially that they maintained them when disillusioned with Joseph Smith. So, I guess I’m not sure all the book of Mormon words would fit on the plates either (or maybe they would). And if they were using some kind of picture writing maybe what was there were big ideas that you had to understand much like Egyptian. I guess what I’m getting to is that as I examined some of the things Chris has too I realized between simple king James errors, like the cherubim/ cherubims thing I mentioned earlier and other simple wording mistakes made in the king James, along with the poor grammar, that this was Joseph Smith’s words. But then the chiasmus (his analysis of the chiasmus was totally unconvincing to me though I guess he didn’t do much of it. Of course Chiasmus is in much writing, the “ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country” kind of stuff. I’d have to look at the examples he used which of course he didn’t show us). But his anaysis of similar books seemed credible to me. Joseph Smith was vastly influenced in his writing by the Bible. Chris talks about books like Manuscript found, the first book of Napoleon, Ethan Smith etc., and mentions similarities in those books like words like “round about their cities” and “round about the city”. I’m wondering if those are most similar to the Bible. It would be interesting to see.

    But the book Chris really finds most similar in his statistical anaysis (besides the Bible) is “the late war between the United States and Great Britian” which was read widely in school. Of all the crazy theories out there, that one actually does make sense to me–that Joseph Smith used phrases from that book, especially in his war scenes. And of course that book also heavily relied on the Bible.

    So who wrote the Book of Mormon–Joseph Smith or the power of God? Why can’t it be both? Just my thoughts.

    p.s. Not sure if i”m driving you crazy by sending you all these notes on books, or if you’ve checked email lately, but you mentioned Ehrman’s writings and so I read his book and sent notes on a counter book. Who knows what you will think and I learn so much from your thoughts, but at some point I’d love to know what you think of the reasons for belief based around Christ’s resurrection. Sorry so long as usual. oh, and now that I’ve spent two hours doing this I told Paul I’m just going to check in once a week (hopefully mondays) and see what this week’s developements have brought. I continue to be interested in your journey and to pray for you and love you greatly!!!!

  2. Jennifer says:

    oops. I should learn to edit. I meant to say but the chiasmus and other semitic elements and words etc. have me convinced God helped him keep some of that in the manuscript too even with his own language there as well. Am I making any sense?. 🙂

    • crooks14 says:

      Hey Jenny, Thanks for your comment. I had the exact same question, whether the other books that are similar to the BOM are also similar to the Bible. I think that is an excellent question that needs to be answered.

      So I am still reading the responses to the books you read (you seem to read books faster than I can even read your responses to those books, haha, kudos). So far I am finding your responses very interesting and I just think I need to read the books before I can really respond well. We’ll have to chat about it soon though 🙂 And I’ll email you once I read more of your emails 🙂 It’s on my list.

      Thanks! Love you!

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