[Read] ➪ The Book of Mormon ➲ Joseph Smith Jr. – Saudionline.co.uk

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10 thoughts on “The Book of Mormon

  1. says:

    This book is much more entertaining if you read it as a "historical novel" rather than trying to read it as a religious text. Honestly, because of the sheer volume of anachronistic errors contained in Joseph Smith's book, even trying to read it as a novel is taxing.

    The Book of Mormon is set in North America in the first century. Before I get "flamed" I would like to point out three of the more glaring anachronistic errors:
    1) Horses (actually brought to the Americas by Europeans hundreds of years later)
    2) Wheat (actually brought to the Americas by Europeans hundreds of years later)
    3) The book of Mormon claims the existence of over 150 first century "cities" (not "towns" or "villages" or "settlements" but "cities") in North America. No evidence has EVER been found to substantiate the existence of even ONE of these cities.

    There are also major battles recorded in the Book of Mormon and, again, NO evidence has EVER been found to substantiate even ONE of those battles. This book is probably most correctly classified as Science Fiction/Fantasy.


  2. says:

    While certainly not comprehensive, here are some of my observations from reading this entire book in three days:

    * Nephi is hard for the proud to like. If this sounds sacrilege, and you've never had this thought before, congratulations...you're probably not proud. But, pride is something I struggle with so his, "Why can't you all just be more like me?" attitude can be a stumbling block. But the thing to remember is, he was called of God, and although his personality might make me less wont to invite him to a party, his righteousness is absolute. And, ultimately, those who are called to be our leaders are meant to be followed. This means that the relief society president, who drives me batty (not my current one), still has the mantle of leadership, and it is my responsibility to adjust my pride so that I can learn the gospel. Laman and Lemuel, while probably slightly justified in finding their younger brother too much to take, allowed their pride to turn to sin, which resulted in the loss of the spirit. And thus, the second promise of the Lord is fulfilled, that "inasmuch as ye will not keep my commandments ye shall be cut off from my presence. They didn't and they were.
    * the word "durst" is used quite frequently.
    * The lineage of authorship foreshadows the later-day church established by Joseph Smith. Nephi gives the small plates to his brother, Jacob, not to any of his own children. Sort of similar to how Hyrum's children were later leaders for the LDS church but not Joseph's own. I found that interesting. I wonder if there was an ancient RLDS church out there.
    * The allegory of the Lord in the Vineyard found in Jacob is profound and deeply relevant to our day.
    * There were some slackers that were handed the plates.
    * Race does not matter. The line between Nephite and Lamanite was so blurred throughout their history that it wasn't a matter of race. The distinction was between those who were lived the commandments of God and those who ignored them. The Nephites who turned "bad" were the worst of all. Those were some scary dudes.
    * I've often wondered why there are so many details of the wars. I'm sure there are multiple and deeper reasons, but I'm leaning towards Mormon just being really interested in it. After all, he was in charge of the entire Nephite army when he was only 16. I can imagine him looking through all the old plates and scrolls and loving all the details Captain Moroni, Teancum, Helaman and Moronihah left. It's a manly book. If only their wives could have been bloggers.
    * Sadly, the history is dictated by which war was in what year. I don't think their history differed from that of any other civilization. We mark time by our skirmishes and conquests. The peace and love that existed while Christ visited, and the effect his visit had for generations to come, stands in stark contrast.
    * The sacrament is sacred. Jay and I had a discussion a couple of weeks ago where he pointed out that taking the sacrament is symbolic of partaking of the tree of life. After reading Christ's words to his disciples, I absolutely agree. I think we endanger our spirits when we partake unworthily or even absentmindedly.
    * It truly matters who our leaders are. I found this discovery extremely apropos with the current change in leadership of this church, as well as the leadership of our country. It takes a wise, humble, and righteous person to effectively lead his people in peace and prosperity whereas a corrupt leader inevitably leads those who follow to destruction. Every time.
    * Being rich isn't the point of being prosperous. I think a great stewardship comes with becoming rich. It's almost a test to see how you handle it. I've been feeling covetous lately for a large home. You see these monster homes being built everywhere around here and it's gotten into my head that I must have one. Nothing less than 5,000 square feet will do! It's pretty clear throughout the book that those the Lord blesses with prosperity doesn't entitle them to get caught up with their money and belongings. The outcome is never good when this happens. So, I'm going to nip this feeling in the bud and hopefully do it before the riches come. (by the way, I don't think having a 5,000 square foot house is bad. But coveting one before you need it or can afford it certainly is).
    * Moroni was totally improvising at the end. He didn't know when he'd die so he just kept adding stuff at the end. And there is some really good stuff at the end!
    * The moral of the story seems to be repentance. The theme throughout is "keep my commandments and you will prosper in the land." but as no one does that perfectly, except my good friend Nephi (who, really I'm just envious of because he never seems to stumble...and who doesn't stumble???) the only way to do it is to repent...continually.

    The best part of this experience has been today. There is a certain famous verse, although when I read it, it wasn't a verse but merely part of the second to last page, where Moroni challenges the reader to pray with a sincere heart to discover the truth of the book. My greatest fear while reading was that I would feel exactly the same afterwards. I wanted to feel more, and an inner voice sounded off a worry about what I'd think if I didn't.

    I didn't know if I'd get the burning bosom. I wanted it, but knew I couldn't force it so I decided to fast the entire day and made arrangements with my sister to have her watch my children while I went to the temple. It was while I was driving to her high school to drop them off, and after I switched the CD playing from a mix to a Mormon Tabernacle Choir recording (I knew no burning would come from listening to Timbaland) that it came. Peace like a River started to play while I was going through the drive through at Carl's Jr. to get lunch for my boys and the melody and words "peace like a river", " faith like a river" "hope like a river", "love like a river" and I felt overwhelmed with such a spirit of joy and love for my Savior.

    That's it! That's it. There are wars, and rumors of wars, and corruption and sin and secret combinations and even total destruction. But with Christ, there is peace. And hope. And charity. The Book of Mormon boldly teaches us the commandments of God, and of His plan so that the faith, hope and peace can be felt.

    This book is true. It is not written by a genius of manipulation. By their fruits ye shall know them, and this is good fruit. It testifies of Christ and because it does, it uplifts the soul.


  3. says:

    Elder Ballard of the LDS Church, talking to a group of graduates at BYU-Hawaii, encouraged us to use the media, specifically blogs, to teach of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I'd like all who read this post to know that this is a book that has changed my life. It is a book that can change anyone's life if read with an open heart and mind. It testifies of Jesus Christ, our atoning Savior. It was translated by Joseph Smith Jr., who was a prophet of God. I've read this book many times and I learn something new every time. I spent a year and a half in Brazil teaching from and about this book. I use this book to help raise my children in righteousness. "Abiding by it's principles will get you nearer to God than any other book." I know that this is true, for it has worked in my life. I'd encourage all who read this comment to also read this book.


  4. says:

    Unlike most religious texts that are approached metaphorically, the Book of Mormon claims to be an historical history of the Americas, which is a verifiable claim.

    The linguistic, anachronistic, biological, sociological, and archaeological evidence against this being a legitimate history of the Americas is monumentally staggering. Pick a random field of study, and that field has numerous evidences illustrating the impossibility of this being historically accurate. Even BYU's own archaeology department shut down their research into its historical accuracy in the seventies, because they didn't find anything after decades of field research.

    Setting all of that aside, the text is derivative to the point of containing translation/text errors and phrases unique to the contemporary books it borrowed chunks from (mainly: 1. View of the Hebrews 1825: Or the Tribes of Israel in America 2. The Late War Between the United States and Great Britain and 3. The First Book of Napoleon, and of course the KJV version of the Old Testament/New Testament).

    I'd give it a C for effort by the standards of the 1800s, but if you're going to claim a found text as history, and you want it to last, you simply have to try harder than this. It just doesn't hold up to modern standards for determining authenticity.


  5. says:

    Somehow I'm not surprised Orson Scott Card and Stephanie Meyer don't recognize an uninspired sequel when they see one.
    ++++++

    That's my one-sentence review.

    And it came to pass that we had a talk with the neighborhood Mormons today, and they bestowed upon us the Book of Mormon. And it came to pass that we are slowly making our way through it, checking to make sure we haven't too hastily judged it. And it came to pass that, so far, god seems like every bit as cruel of a dictator as he ever did in parts I and II. I'm going to do a real review later, but for now, know that, as long as you feel IN YOUR HEART god wants you to break into someone's house, steal his/her Sacred Tablets, and then cut his/her head off, it's okay.

    Don't know about you, but that's a load off my mind.

    +++++++


    Honestly, I'm glad that on that day several weeks ago, the Mormons stopped by. It's a good thing they came over and talked to us about their religion.

    They think stupid things, preciousss. . . They believe Jesus came to Americas and talked to the Indians. . .

    Yes, but they were very nice.

    The Mormonses want to sell you their religion. They think your atheism isn't good enough.

    Yes, but from their point of view, my life is missing something. They can't help feeling that way, just like I can't help feeling like their lives are missing something. They think I'm missing god. I think they're missing sanity.

    They think womanses can't preach, and they mock them by saying it's separate but equal. It's bullshit, precioussss. They think good people gets lighter skin, and dark people are being punished. Since the Latter Day Saints formed, they've changed their positions on just about everything, even though god's will should be a permanent thing. Nobody can provide any archeological evidence supporting any of their claims about ancient cities, golden tablets, or even the cultures that existed at the time their book was supposed to have been written. The Book of Mormon has people riding horses at a time when horses weren't in the U.S., has people using steel when nobody knew how to forge it, had people using compasses before they were invented. It's a fat turd of badly written lies and plagiarised Bible passages. . . preciousss.

    Yes, there's all of that. But then, if we hadn't met them, Joy and I wouldn't have sat around discussing spirituality that one Sunday.

    ///flashback///

    (Joy and Michael sit on the couch, holding hands, eyes closed.)

    Joy: Dear father, uhhh...the Mormons convinced us to try praying to you, to see if we feel your presence or anything...thank you for sending the Mormons by, and....for giving us each other, and also our dog, Athena....Thanks for our jobs, and food, and the television, and whatever else I'm leaving out. I don't understand why you're male. And why, assuming you authored the Book of Mormon, you left out mrs. god. They say there's a holy mother, but in order to protect her, god hasn't spoken of her. That doesn't make any sense, and we think they're just making shit up.

    Anyway, We said we'd ask some questions, so here they are: are the Mormons telling us the truth? And do you exist? And are you a male? Okay. That's it. Amen.

    Michael: Amen.

    *Later*

    Michael: When I try to communicate with a greater presence, I sometimes feel a little something. But, when I picture Jesus on a cross, or Joseph Smith translating tablets, I don't feel anything. I just don't see any reason we have to give it a name, give it a sex, give it a personality, whatever.

    Joy: See, I spent the first sixteen years of my life praying and trying to feel something. It's not like I haven't "given god a chance," so I don't even know why we're going through this. We're just humoring them.

    Michael: You know, maybe there IS a god, and he IS selective about who gets to go to happyland. But, maybe he's put all of these earthly ideas of god here to serve as golden calves, and only those who use the abilities they've been given--their rational thought, and an adherence to a true morality--only those people will get into happyland. Maybe that's what it is.

    *Later Still*

    Joy: We should start going back to that Unitarian Universalist service. If we have a kid, we won't want her to grow up without any understanding of what religion is. We should be upfront with her--

    Michael: Or him--

    Joy: --about being atheists ourselves, but I don't want her--

    Michael: Or him--

    Joy: --to be forced into anything like I was as a kid.

    Michael: Yeah, we should start going back. That one church we went to that one time had all sorts of volunteering. We can go protest the 1070 bill and get arrested!

    ///flashforward///

    After talking to them, we started thinking about spirituality again, and we've both been feeling a little better about existence since then.

    But it's bullshit, preciousss. The book is half "And so it came to pass," and one third "exceedingly," and the other third tripe.

    But, Evil Half, that comes out to--

    Shut up about my maths.

    Well, the book sucks. It really does. But, despite all of the negativity between its covers, the people who follow the tradition still seem to be very nice people. And only good came from the two meetings we had with our Mormons.

    They haven't given up on you yet. When they do, they'll eat your sooooouuuuuuuuulllll...

    Shut up, Evil Michael. Leave now and never come back.


    ///ungracious segue into the final part of the review///

    Greatest hits from The B.O.M.:

    3 Nephi 7:8 And thus six years had not passed away since the more part of the people had turned from their righteousness, like the dog to his vomit, or like the sow to her wallowing in the mire.

    2 Nephi 9:33 Wo unto the uncircumcised of heart, for a knowledge of their iniquities shall smite them at the last day.

    2 Nephi 14:1 And in that day, seven women shall take hold of one man, saying: We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel; only let us be called by thy name to take away our reproach.

    And, finally, my very favorite:

    1 Nephi 18:2 Now I, Nephi, did not work the timbers after the manner which was learned by men, neither did I build the ship after the manner of men; but I did build it after the manner which the Lord had shown unto me; wherefore, it was not after the manner of men.

    The word of god. He's a poet.


  6. says:

    Without sounding sacreligious, I am profoundly grateful for this book. It's a book about answers to personal challenges. It's a book about how to live your life. It's a book about two civilizations and their relationship with a loving Father in Heaven.
    There really isn't a rating you could give something so profound and precious. And to this, I apologize.
    It is the BEST book I have ever read. This is at the top of my favorite list!!! For anyone who hasn't read this yet, and would like a free copy, I'd be glad to send you one! :-) It's worth your time. Just be prepared to have your life changed...for the better!!!


  7. says:

    My Mom gave me the Book of Mormon as a gift to me when I was still a student at Seattle University. I reading it off and on for the next week or so and determined that it was an obscure history book with weird names, place-names and events and in fact could even have been written by a science fiction writer (especially after reading about the role of the Liahona - a current-day device that must have been a GPS of some sort powered by mental focus). It also sounded so much like the King James Version of the Bible in places that I couldn't help but think the author had been taught with that book.

    The history of the Nephites and Lamanites were typical stories of the rise and fall of nations - all explained by the book as occurrences of falls from righteousness and conversions to righteousness. To me, it sounded a lot like an amateur's attempt to put a spiritual face on historical events and so I put it down and forgot about it for many years.
    I picked it up again years later at the encouragement of a crippled banker I had met at a financial seminar held in Provo, Utah. The seminar was not that interesting and he recommended that I read it again but "this time", he said, "pray and ask God if the book is true or not. Sit down, clear your head and ask your heavenly father to allow the spirit to teach you the truths of this history book and if it is true at all, you will get a warm familiar feeling and your focus will be single-minded. If it isn't correct, you will feel nothing different. But if you don't pray about it first, sincerely, in your heart with an open mind and heart, then you may feel nothing. Only your private spiritual effort will allow you to be in the frame of mind to read it through".

    So I did and yes, what he told me was correct. I spent more than two weeks totally and spiritually absorbed in the Book of Mormon. The spiritual lessons learned by the various kings and rulers and characters in the book became real as I placed myself in their shoes and observed my life, my struggles, my accomplishments and my spiritual distresses as results of my dependence on myself and the worldly things surrounding me. Things such as my preoccupation with money and career and my own shortcomings as a man. Things I believed to be controllable if I had the right training, the right exercises, the right positive 'can do' mental attitude.

    The Book of Mormon helps me to realize that I was on the wrong track; or rather I was doing many good things but for the wrong reasons. I continue to read it today - but perhaps with more depth of understanding - thanks to others in my Church: leaders and members like myself - who have testified how they too learned important life lessons from the characters and stories in the book and how it remains a reminder of how what we do now affects our destiny and how Jesus, the Christ, the annointed one has played an all important role in our salvation. I highly recommend anyone to site down by yourself, and ask God to allow his spirit to permeate your own soul and open your mind to the lessons the book contains before and as you read it.


  8. says:

    A book I've read more than any other book (unless you count a few picture books). The Book of Mormon is at the foundation of my testimony of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I love this book!
    5th Time - 3/7/91
    6th Time - 5/3/91
    7th Time - 11/3/91
    8th Time - 4/26/92
    9th Time - 9/24/92
    10th Time 1/1/93
    11th Time 2/15/93
    12th Time 6/8/93
    13th 3/13/94
    14th 7/17/94
    15th 2/23/95
    2 years??
    4/13/97
    2 years??
    11/15/99
    Big gap where I know I read but didn't keep track...
    ETA: finished the Book of Mormon yesterday! 9/7/08
    ETA: we finished it as a family on 12/24/08 - our 3rd time through as a family!
    ETA: finished again today personal 4/26/09
    12/25/11 finished as a family
    6/25/12 finished personal
    2/5/13 finished personal
    9/13/13 finished as a family
    12/13/13 finished personal
    8/14/14 finished personal
    1/11/15 finished personal
    4/5/15 Finished as a family and finished personal
    1/29/16 Finished personal
    4/8/16 Finished personal
    7/2/16 Finished personal
    9/11/16 Finished personal
    12/10/16 Finished Personal
    6/23/17 Finished Personal (2nd time this year)
    9/15/17 Finished Personal
    1/5/17 Finished Personal
    3/28/18 Finished Personal
    5/27/18 finished as a family
    6/18/18 Finished Personal
    10/6/18 Personal
    12/31/18 - Personal President Nelson Challenge


  9. says:

    The review process for this book has become a farce. Mormons give the book 5 stars because they believe in this junk. Non-Mormons give it 1 star because they recognize it for the fiction that it is. And so it goes.


  10. says:

    I did actually read the entire book. Each week with some missionaries that discussed it with me. My grandparents are Mormon and after visiting the Temple in Salt Lake City on the way to California, I signed up for discussion. I love my grandparents and if some cult was going to take over their brain, I wanted to know what it was about. They seemed to be getting more intense with it as they grew older. I enjoyed the conversations. The reading itself was dry and full of parables that weren't enlightening. I have a hobby of reading religious books to see which parts could have happened by aliens coming down and making contact with humans. No I don't actually believe it, but it is fun to look for. This one had alot of spots that could be that. We had some good discussions on why black skin was considered Evil and why the belief was changed in modern times. Also good discussions on womens roles, polygamy, homosexuality, and Why their beliefs are constantly mutated. Tried to elaborate on how they can recognize that it is God talking to them and not just their psychosis. Overall it was informative and I walked away with a better understanding of what Mormons believe, most likely better than many Mormons. Once again my belief that religions prey on people who are in search of a quick answer to life the universe, and everything was confirmed.


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