BOOK OF MORMON

In 1830, Joseph Smith published the Book of Mormon. He claimed it was from golden plates delivered to him by an angel and translated by the gift and power of God. To learn more about this translation process of divining from a rock or seer stone placed in a hat, you can read the Gospel Topics essay.


I don't believe the Book of Mormon is what it claims. There is zero archaeological evidence for the history it discloses. The DNA of Native Americans as ancient Israelite descendants in not existent. There are serious anachronisms in the text and content showing it's flaws. Some of its teachings are racist and some are in conflict with the later doctrines of the author.


I believe the Book of Mormon is a 19th century fictional novel, written in a scriptural style, inspired by multiple sources and created with the purpose of teaching what Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdrey believed about Christianity and the origins of aboriginal inhabitants of the pre-colonial Americas.

The stories and teachings are very similar to Biblical styled accounts, many with long sections of direct quotes, but stretch the imagination further in his creative scriptural myth.

While I claim that it's origin is not historical, the messages one takes from it's stories can be an inspiration to it's readers. I have read and studied the stories and messages on many occasions over 50 years, first as a literal believer and then as one holding it to a higher criticism.

 
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“the most correct of any Book on earth & the keystone of our religion & a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts than by any other Book.”

Joseph Smith