Comments about ‘Challenging Issues, Keeping the Faith: The Baja model of Book of Mormon geography’

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Published: Monday, Nov. 22 2010 5:30 a.m. MST

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JM
Lehi, UT

Thanks Mike.
Even without agreement on important locations (Sinai, Bethlehem, Golgotha, Bountiful, Zarahemla) learning more Biblical and BoM realities, including geography, helps us understand Jesus more, and His dealings with all His children.

Im pretty certain of some BoM sites (Jerusalem, Nahom, Sidon basin, etc), and excited at each discovery;and here we witness answers to questions centuries old, and another falling spacious anti article of faith: #5 We believe "Mormons are empty handed on geography."

For me, the Mesoamerican details and evidences are too consistent for chance.

Enjoyed lw discussions and critic repeats. Again, critics, you cant trust anti-LDS sources, you know this by now.
LDS make mistakes, but antis mislead fulltime.

I disagree that FAIR etc have positions on Maya, horses, etc. Mike argues soundly and gives several horse options;others, including Wade Miller in "Science and the" BoM discuss weak Smithsonian science claims, recent horse discoveries, etc.

Im hoping tw someone claiming knowledge that the Maya arent BoM related will explain my lw?:
Maya religion is centered on unique, abundantly documented detailed Golgotha/temple/Eden Cross/tree symbolism with Olmec and Laman supported Baallike twists.

Explain detailed Middle East, Christian, Maya links.

Arlin Nusbaum
Modesto, CA

JM "Im pretty certain of some BoM sites (Jerusalem, Nahom, Sidon basin, etc), and excited at each discovery"

Another theory?

----------

Finally some feedback - if the Rosenvalls will hear it.

Jeff
Temple City, CA

Since I live relatively close to Baja, I have wondered at the possibility of the peninsula's being a part of Book of Mormon geography. California was early on assumed to be an island, and some of the language fits. It's an interesting discussion to have.

Otis Spurlock
Ogden, UT

Michael Ash wrote:
"the paucity of archaeological work that has been done in the Baja region is, in my opinion, the strongest."

It speaks volumes when your stongest argument is the lack of archaeological work in a specific area. What does this tell you about the current state of evidence for the BoM?

Michael Ash also wrote:
"From my interpretation of the text, however, it seems reasonable to assume that the Book of Mormon peoples would have left some archaeological evidence for their existence."

I also agree with Mr. Ash that, at the very least, the BoM would have left archaeological evidence of their existence.

This begs the question, why hasn't there been any archaeological evidence found after centuries of intense study?

Far from there being any evidence in support of the BoM, there are mountains of scientific, genetic, archaeological, linguistic, geographic, etc. against the BoM being historic.

Adano
Orem, UT

"It speaks volumes when your stongest argument is the lack of archaeological work in a specific area. What does this tell you about the current state of evidence for the BoM?"

Um. You may have misread this.

He's not saying that lack of archeological work is the strongest argument for the Book of Mormon.

He's saying that a major criticism of the Baja model of Book of Mormon geography is that we're not aware of major civilizations that lived there anciently. And he's conceding that the best defense against this criticism of the Baja model (not of the entire Book of Mormon) is that there may be undiscovered ruins in Baja.

Outside of Baja, contrary to your comment, there is in fact widespread evidence of major civilizations, such as the Maya, Aztec, Inca, Olmec, Adonai, Hopewell, etc.)

So I'm a little stumped when you ask, "Why hasn't there been any archaeological evidence found after centuries of intense study?" Folks have found many civilizations. We just don't know which might be the Book of Mormon peoples.

Bill in Nebraska
Maryville, MO

As President Hinkley and all the Presidents of the LDS CHurch have said and what I have stated as well:

"As has been demonstrated for a hundred and fifty plus years, the truth of the book WILL NOT be determined by literary analysis or by scientific research, although these are reassuring and most welcome. The truth will be determined today and tomorrow, as it has bee throughout the yesterdays, by the reading of it in a SPIRIT OF REVERENCE and RESPECT and PRAYER..."

"The evidence for its truth, for its validity in a world that is prone to demand evidence, lies not in ARCHAEOLOGY, or ANTOROPOLOGY, though these may be helpful to some. It lies not in a word research or a historical analysis, though these may be confirmatory. The evidence for its truth and validity lies with the covers of the book itself. The truth lies in reading it. It is a book of God.

It is here. It must be explained. It can be explained ONLY as the translator himself explained it origin."

This I totally agree with. You must ponder, pray and read this book with a broken heart and contrite spirit.

Waikiki Gal
Waimanalo, HI

Otis said, "I also agree with Mr. Ash that, at the very least, the BoM would have left archaeological evidence of their existence.

This begs the question, why hasn't there been any archaeological evidence found after centuries of intense study?"

I can see why it might be troubling to some members that there is no evidence currently for the BoM in the New World. However, I base my testimony on the words of Christ, not whether there is evidence for the BoM peoples in the New World. If people base their testimonies on scientific evidences supporting the BoM, then they will be sorely disappointed and will not have testimonies for long. Prayer, study and the spirit are the ways to find a testimony of the BoM, not archeology or science.

cmtam
lake forest, ca

Bill in Nebraska", You must ponder, pray and read this book with a broken heart and contrite spirit." Actually,King David says in (Psalm 51:17) "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart". God wants Israel(Christians)to acknowledge there dependence on him, through prayers not the BofM. Faith is only as good as the object of that faith not some new age, create your own reality or metaphysical speculation.
The BoM has external problems and internal as well: The BofM teachess God is Yahweh.
In(3 Nephi 9:18) "I am the light and the life of the world I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. In agreement with the Bible.
I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, saith the Lord God, who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty. (Rev 1:8 Latin Vulgate & NIV)

Thus saith the LORD(YHWH)the King of Israel and his redeemer the LORD(YHWH) of hosts, I am the first and I am the last apart from me there is no God. (Isaiah 44:6 ) Jesus is God eternal.

Doctor
Tucson, AZ

If a physical people existed in our physical world, in the numbers the BoM implies and the Prophets (at least the early ones said) than there would be physical evidence. This does not exist in Baja and Ash uses that to argue against that theory. It also does not exist anywhere else in the New World yet Ash will not argue that point. If evidence did exist BYU and your church would be trumpeting this message daily in these pages. Proof enough for me of the truth. Bill and Waikiki Gal state there is no physical evidence and that your Prophets say there won't be any. Yet we live in a physical world. Does God suspend those laws for you? He let St Thomas feel his wounds, but you can't have a city?

  • 6:41 p.m. Nov. 22, 2010
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Bill in Nebraska
Maryville, MO

TO cmtam:

As I have said all the time Jesus is the God of the Old Testament. He gave the law to the Israelites, not just the Jews.

If the Book of Mormon is true, the God Lives.
If the Book of Mormon is true, then Jesus is the Son of God, the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh, born of Mary.
If the Book of Mormon is true, the Jesus is verily our Redeemer, the Savior of the World.
If the Book of Mormon is true then this land is choice above all other lands, but if it is to remain such, the inhabitants of the land MUST worship the God of the Land, the Lord Jesus Christ.
If the Book of Mormon is true, the Church is true, Joseph Smith is a Prophet of God.

The Book of Mormon testifies of the Divinity of Jesus Christ. You must recognize the Lord's hand in all things, including the Book of Mormon.

To Doctor: I never stated there is no evidence. I stated that the evidence will never prove or disprove the Book of Mormon. The proof lies only in the Book.

JoeBlow
Miami Area, Fl

Adano writes

"Folks have found many civilizations. We just don't know which might be the Book of Mormon peoples."

NONE is the most logical answer to your question.

To Bill in NB

"the truth of the book WILL NOT be determined by literary analysis or by scientific research"

Spoken like a person knowing that there will never be any real evidence.

But you can bet on one thing. If ever there was some real evidence, it would be paraded around to no end. ( and the tune would change)

Not likely to ever find out though.

the truth
Holladay, UT

RE: Doctor | 6:41 p.m.

Actually there HAVE been very large populations in the new world,

numbering in the MILLIONS,

from mayans and olmecs, to aztecs, to indians of north america.

RE: ASH

the buildings of mexico and central american and south america are NOT made of stone,

but cement,

buidings of the pueblo and anasazi, DO seem qualify as cement.

and walls could be made of anything, and walls of dirt WAS mention in the book of mormon.

When there are SUNKEN CITIES, uprising and lowering of the geography, HOW can one claim there was not much geographic change?

and the river sidon was not mentioned AFTER christ appearance.

leading one to believe it was diverted, or became changed in size somehow, or possibly sunk as well.

while other cities recovered and people went on, that is NO indication of the extent geographic change.

Some here calin NO evidence has been found of BOM cultures,

but HOW do we know we haven't found it and just do not recognize it?

what would BOM evidence look_like, what would distinguish_it?

how much ofthe daily BOM culture and language_do_we_know_about?

And_ifthey were conquered and thoroughly destoyed 1600 yearsago what_would therebe_tofind?

Arlin Nusbaum
Modesto, CA

Let's be clear. When there was no cause not to accept the presumption that the fancy ruins in Mesoamerica were BoM, such physical "evidence" converted no one.

Next, let's be clear about our current understanding of BoM lands. Has the LDS Church conceded that not ALL Native Americans descended from BoM peoples? Yes, they changed the Introduction to the BoM. It's a start.

Having acknowledged that, what's next? Giving the Lamanites, i.e. Native Americans credit for having (in many areas) an advanced civilization prior to the arrival Lehi.

The question is, can we identify the Lamanites? Yes. The Hopewell flourished before Lehi, and diminished at the same time as Nephites.

Because it took 3.5 years to gather both sides for the final battle, we know the Hopewell gathered from far distances (both for and against) and their participation accounts for the large numbers.

Alberta Reader
Magrath, Alberta

Joe Blow
I see you are commenting again. Let me reask the question I asked last week but due to the 2 commnent rule could not be discussed. So we agree there is historical evidence for the Bible. Given the historical evidence what do you think of Jesus Christ? Do you beleive he is the son of God as written in the Bible and how does this change the way you live your life?
If there is no effect on your life because of what is written in the Bible, then even if proof were to be found that 100% confirmed the BofM civilization I doubt you would change anything about your life and how you live. Am I right on this or not?

JoeBlow
Miami Area, Fl

Alberta,

I will be the first to admit that I KNOW very little.

So...

What do I think of JC? Not sure. Either a charismatic man or Son of God.

How does it change the way I live my life?

Well, I dont take the bible as literal in all senses of the word. Man made with stories and embellishments. So... I don't hang on every word and try to parse whatever meaning I want to come away with.

I think that there is right and wrong, regardless of religion. Stealing, lying , murder are wrong and can harm a society regardless of religion.

Drinking coffee and keeping the Sabbath holy, not so much.

I have yet to see a religion that is not centered around power, control and money. If there is a god, I think he/she would be saddened by them all.

Basically, I try to be a good person. I try to treat others as I want to be treated.

As far as BOM civilizations being found. You may be right. But, even if I bought the story, I may not buy the religion.

Too much man made power, money and control.

cmtam
lake forest, ca

unto the cBill in Nebraska said: "If the Book of Mormon is true, then God Lives" yet The BofM is false,but God still lives.
If the Book of Mormon is true, then Jesus is the Son of God, the Only Begotten of the "Father in the flesh, born of Mary, but "The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee;"(Luke 1:35)The Holy Ghost(pneuma),not the Father in the flesh, therefore the BofM is false.
The Book of Mormon is false, the Church is false, Joseph Smith is a false Prophet.
More BofM internal issues, "And moreover,I say unto you,that there shall be no other name given nor any other way nor means whereby salvation can come hildren of men, only in "the name of Christ" the Lord Omnipotent.( Mosiah 3:17 ).
Christ is not Jesus last name its his title, the (Christos)Messiah.
Joseph Smith misunderstood the Greek text. ..."the name (of) Jesus [the] Christ" (Acts 4:10). ..."to onomati Iesous Xristou..."(Acts 4:10 Greek N.T.)

A Scientist
Ypsilanti, MI

Alberta Reader,

You ask, "Do you beleive he is the son of God as written in the Bible and how does this change the way you live your life?"

Please tell me, how SHOULD I change the way I live my life? Upon what basis do you presume that my life needs to change?

Your question is an example of a classic charlatan archetype. You presume to judge and condemn your "marks" before they have been proven guilty of any wrongdoing.

By so doing, you fallaciously try to discredit in advance those who might object to your unbelievable claims.

Your insincere and disingenuous question is merely prepackaged ad hominem.

Having said that, I will tell you that IF you could really establish even ONE unambiguous piece of evidence for a single thing in the Book of Mormon, I would "give away all my sins", join the LDS Church, and be its most active and passionate missionary for the remainder of my life!

So, man up and show the evidence!

JM
Lehi, UT

Joe, I admire your openness and desire for good.

My religion never brought me any$etc. Leaders arent put in palaces either.

Please keep looking beyond how we are painted--to the message of the history of Christ.

I hope those wounded rejecting souls wandering crowded paths know they are loved.

Not sure if this is a conscience band-aid but when all else fails some repeat the new #1 critic AF "we believe no evidence:" this in spite of the spirit and while looking at other abundant evidence; places found, even plates witnessed, Mike, Maxwell, FAIR, etc, many comments (including 1st comment above), thousands of correlations& details (what more could you want?) dates, names, stained swords, symbolism, breastplates, geography, steeled bows, morphology, mountainous failed criticisms (only takes one : ), etc etc etc.
I dont understand??

Thanks lw monitors. Many black LDS are offended by critic attacks, and forgive BY etc for holding some contemporary Christian ideas, perhaps misreading white skins(=religiosity anciently) Abraham, etc.

Why keep that alive?

LDS were persecuted for freedom and equality teachings; blacks influenced restoration, JS etc LMS, undergroundRR etc.)

Scientist,cmtmanetc...never mind (on illogic)...but wheres the love?

Hurrah for Israel!!!: ) (Albertaetc): ) : )

sharrona
layton, Ut

@JM said "What more could you want?"True,

"Just about anyone can read the New Testament and make some sort of sense of it, but the real theologian is someone who has experienced a sense of condemnation on account of sin, who reads the New Testament and realizes that the message of forgiveness is good news for him or her. The gospel is thus experienced as something liberating. Sinners are attraciive because they are loved; they are not loved because they are attractive. Gods love for us is not dependent upon our achievements, nor can we ever earn our salvation." Martin Luther. see(John 3:16)

Idaho Coug
Meridian, Idaho

The core message and testimony of the Book of Mormon - regardless what you may believe about it's historicity - is the reality of Jesus Christ. The core message of Jesus Christ was love, charity and service. We can all at least agree that message is one we all can and should strive to increase in our lives!!

What we DO is far, far more important than what we BELIEVE.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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