Truth is quite simply the most pure when given from the source and not as a
byproduct of someone else's interpretation of truth.When
someone is ready to call upon God with sincerity of heart and purity of intent
to do His will over their own or what the world says, and acts upon that desire,
God will lead them to truth. This has always been the pattern. No
amount of signs or physical proof including the Golden Plates of Nephi will
convince anyone of spiritual truths. This is by purposeful design as signs
follow the faithful only after they have exercised faith unto the end they may
see that which is not revealed by sight alone.If you want to know
whether Mormonism is true, ask of God and seek diligently to learn by His will
and not all the naysayers who denounce those works as fabrication from
longstanding rumors and lies. We read in the Bible about the false
accusations and trial of Jesus that led to His crucifixion, when God's
truths and authority are upon the earth, people's faith is easily swayed
away by the world and their own doubt. So it is today...
@ Rollo Tomasi - Rockingham, NC - "Someone above already mentioned this, but
I note how the author was careful NOT to give the name of the mysterious
man/angel who showed the plates to Mary Whitmer. I suspect this is because Mary
always maintained that this angel was named "Nephi," which doesn't
fit into the current LDS narrative (i.e., that the angel was
"Moroni")."Rollo - Please quit trying to
make something out of nothing.The fact that Mary Whitmer never named
who the messenger/angel was means nothing. Whether the messenger was named
"Nephi" or "Moroni" makes absolutely no difference at all.
None.Did an angel named Moroni show Joseph Smith the gold plates?
Yes. But nowhere in LDS theology or our history does any credible document
claim that "only" the angel "Moroni" was solely capable of, or
allowed, to show the plates to those that God chose to see them. God is at the
head of this universe and He directs His own work. To Him, the name of His
messenger doesn't matter. What DOES matter is that they are indeed worthy
of being HIS messenger.Cheers.
Reading all the naysayers' / doubters' comments on here brings the
following piece of wisdom to mind:"To those who know spiritual
truth, no physical proof is needed.To those who don't know spiritual
truth, no amount of physical proof will ever fully suffice."I
literally thank God that I do, in fact, know.
sharrona,“....RE: Craig Clark ,(Inspired Version) the book
(BoM)shall be delivered unto a man(JS). V. 17,..the Three witnesses. V. 18 ,
speak as it were from the dead. V. 19, the Lord God will proceed to bring forth
the words of this book; and the mouth of as Many witnesses as seemeth good; (Is
29:14 JST)….”______________________________Is it
any wonder that a man who could publish a book in 1830 insisting it’s an
ancient record he translated from a language for which modern scholarship has no
knowledge could then offer as a follow up act a bold attempt to revise the King
James Bible to make it read the way it’s supposed to read? Who would
presume to do something so audacious?Joseph Smith had a lot of
pluck. I’ll not hesitate to give him credit for that.
@Lbone"Today there are still some who believe the earth is flat
"That sounds like you're arguing that faith is less
valuable than observable evidence. Your example makes the opposite case you were
going for. @Silverprospector"Please cite sources for
people who still think the world is flat."I don't see a
need, there's always some people who will believe some absurd thing. I once
had to sit through a guy on a crowded bus next to me showing videos that he
claimed was proof of Bigfoot.@EternalPespective"Why do so
many people only believe in the works of dead prophets, but refuse to believe
God could raise up a living prophet in these days?"Technically,
according to your belief, this is an accurate depiction of how things were in
the 1700s without any sort of prophet around.
I found the story about Mary Whitmer to interesting, informative and uplifting.
I would not want to pick it apart and then feel bad for being spiritually
James J. Strang had the plates of the ancient Book of the Law of the Lord given
to Moses, which he claimed to translate.He had 7 witnesses examine
and handle those plates with signed signatures just like the Book of Mormon.
sharrona("RE: EternalPerspective. Johnathan Edwards(Great
awakening) was a Christian preacher and is widely acknowledged to be
America's most important and original philosophical theologian," and
one of America's greatest intellectuals.Edward’s signs of
Christian of regeneration(Born again/from above): 1. One’s esteem of
Christ’s is elevated to an Orthodox Christology. 2. The awakening of the
conscience of sin, or a conviction of Sin 3. A greater regard for the Bible,
which establishes the more of the certainty of the Spirit of God.")Why does creedal, reformation, and new age Christianity so constrain the
power, miracles, and blessings of God as to make them an exclusive pattern of
ancient days by denying that such occur in these days? Why do
people endlessly quote the Bible that proclaims Christ's Church as a living
entity with revelation that comes through the Priesthood authority, yet deny God
works in the same patterns today?How is God changeable? Why do so
many people only believe in the works of dead prophets, but refuse to believe
God could raise up a living prophet in these days? How did man-made
interpretations become the same as God's truths?
RE: Michigander Mary M. Whitmer. In August, 1842, the Millennial Star, printed
in England, published Joseph Smith’s story stating that the angel’s
name was “Nephi” (see Millennial Star, Vol. 3, p. 53). On page 71 of
the same volume we read that the “…message of the angel Nephi[not
Moroni]…opened a new dispensation to man…”. J. C.
Whitmer,“I have heard my grandmother (Mary M. Whitmer) say on several
occasions that she was shown the plates of the Book of Mormon by an holy angel,
whom she always called Brother Nephi[not Moroni].” (John C. Whitmer,
“The Eight Witnesses”, The Historical Record, Volume 7, October,
1888, p. 621)RE: Craig Clark ,(Inspired Version) the book (BoM)shall
be delivered unto a man(JS). V. 17,..the Three witnesses. V. 18 , speak as it
were from the dead. V. 19, the Lord God will proceed to bring forth the words of
this book; and the mouth of as Many witnesses as seemeth good… (Is 29:14
JST)JS creates Many witnesses. Not supported by the Dead Sea
Scrolls,LXX or KJV.
Mary Musselman Whitmer should have been ordained a deaconess in The Church of
Jesus Christ (June 1829) just as Phebe was an ordained deaconess (Greek word for
"servant" in Romans 16:1-2) of the Cenchrea, Greece Branch of The Church
of Jesus Christ (1st century A.D.). Also Mary Magdalene may very well have been
the 1st ordained deaconess of The Church of Jesus Christ - Old Jerusalem
Branch. We in The Church of Jesus Christ (WHQ: Monongahela, PA) have always had
ordained deaconesses in our organization. Deaconesses (and deacons) are
non-priesthood offices. Mary Musselman Whitmer, Mary Magdalene, and Phebe of
Cenchrea were the trailblazing pioneer sisters of their day.
LbonePlease cite sources for people who still think the world is
flat.You are correct though, praying has worked for millions and
billions of people... of other religions as well. Catholics know they are right,
so do mormons, muslims, jews, and the rest. They have all prayed about it and
KNOW that their religion is correct. That is why it is such an unreliable
Brent T. Aurora COGod told you that it is true huh?? Well he told me
that it wasn't and to steer clear of it. So if we are getting 2 different
answers, what does that mean?
BrahmabullEither you or I don't know what you are talking
about. Whether Oliver wrote and signed the names for the official statement by
the 3 Witnesses and the 8 Witnesses (and I know of no source to substantiate
this) is irrelevant, because based on subsequent interviews all 11 witnesses
"owned" the statement and testified to the veracity of the statements.
There are at least 10 documented interviews of the 8 witnesses that
clearly state they materially saw and handled the plates that Joseph showed
them, and described in great detail what they saw.The three
Witnesses didn't handle the plates, but were shown the plates by an
angel--a "supernatural" being. Martin Harris and David Whitmer were
misquoted by detractors of the Church and they both refuted those misquotes.
They all describe their experience as real and genuine in multiple
interviews.The Maxwell institute has sources and can back up all
these statements. Can you?
"If only I could see the gold plates, THEN I would believe." To people
like BrahmaBull and others unbelievers and critics I would suggest that seeing
is NOT believing. Today there are still some who believe the earth is flat or
that planes did not crash into the twin towers,etc. Jesus Christ
walked among men where He proclaimed to be the Son of God. People did not
believe then and they crucified Him. The Father and the Son appeared to a boy
in1820. Many don't believe that. A witness of spiritual things
comes through spiritual means: sincere prayer, study, humility, fasting,
repentance. It's a recipe. It works every time if you follow them. If
you're vain or arrogant, the Spirit of God will not bear witness of divine
truths.I recommend all naysayers and critics to follow the recipe.
It has worked for me and millions of others. It will work for you if you'll
but humble yourselves.
This is what I know. God told me the Book of Mormon is scripture and that
Joseph Smith did in fact see and speak with Him and His Son in a grove of trees
(which I have visited).There is a lot of history of this country, of
pioneers/settlers moving with manifest destiny in conquering/occupying/claiming
the lands which now make up this country. Some of that history includes Mormon
settlements, Mormon leaders and followers, others who settled/followed them as
family members or friends, some who left the faith, some whom returned...
stories told different lenses. Those were superstitious times recounted by
people with bias, less literary skill and antiquated tools. These people, in
and out of the LDS faith, were like us -- imperfect, perhaps scoundrels, subject
to their own paradigm of values, opinions, perceptions... Even Joseph Smith.It matters not to me the loopholes, tricks, methods, means or even the
complete nature of the individuals God chose for His work. This is His church;
His gospel, as restored, works in my life as a living faith; His leaders inspire
me with His words; His temples bring me close to Him.
@Kvnsmansn,I am intrigued by your broad mindedness. If you ever have the
opportunity you may appreciate visiting Pershing Square in Los Angeles. There
they have many preachers on their soap boxes sharing hallucinations, doomsday
warnings, extreme politics and a big welcoming to join them and their cause or
Simply put, God's ways are not your ways. The truth is in asking God and
allowing Him to reveal it to you in His way, not yours. Those 12 witnesses to
this day would testify that the Book of Mormon is true and of divine origin and
that they know it of personal accord. They know for themselves because God made
it known to them. Why should you or I expect anything less or more according to
our rationalization. If you want to know, then sincerely read it, pray about it,
and then try to deny these witnesses or worse the undeniable witness you will
receive. But beware, what you know to be true becomes your obligation to follow
and live accordingly.
Skeptic posted:=Some people are more prone to hallucinating strange
things and it is often=times a family trait, perhaps something inherited
in the genes similar to some=diseasesI am willing to consider
the possibility that God may choose as His spokesman to the world someone who
God knows will hallucinate the message God wants that spokesman to take to the
rest of humankind.
OnlytheCross posted:=But even if we or an angel from heaven preach
to you another gospel than the=one we first preached to you, let him be
accursed."==That warning in Galations 1:6-10, given 30-60 years
after Christ's death, still=serves Christians today.OnlytheCross, correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe traditional
Christianity teaches that there exists an evil being, supernaturally powerful
but not more so than God, called Satan. Does the gospel that Paul is referring
to include a way to determine whether that gospel was actually inspired by the
good God that controls the universe, and wasn't rather inspired by the
postulated evil supernaturally powerful being?
@OnlyTheCrossComing unto Christ represents a covenant, a two-way
promise between God and man. Jesus Christ has done for us what we could never do
for ourselves. He suffered and bled and died for us. He redeems us from sin. He
offers to change our nature, to make us into new creatures (see 2 Corinthians
5:17; Mosiah 27:24—26). He rose from the dead and thereby opened the door
for us to do the same at the appointed time. These things we could not do for
ourselves; they are acts of mercy and grace. Latter-day Saints
readily acknowledge that though our efforts to be righteous are necessary, they
will never be sufficient to save us. Book of Mormon prophets thus explained that
above and beyond all we can do, we are saved by the grace of Christ and that our
most significant labor is to trust in and rely upon the merits and mercy and
grace of the Holy Messiah (see 2 Nephi 10:24; 25:23; 2 Nephi 2:8; 31:19; Moroni
6:4).The point: the teachings are entirely congruent with those of
the apostles, most notably Paul and James.Best.
In antiquity, dreams were omens of portentous foreshadowing in the real world.
We read of Joseph explaining Pharaoh’s troubling dreams, Daniel doing
likewise with Nebuchadnezzar, and Paul confessing his own uncertainty as to what
exactly he experienced, whether in or out of the body. How many Catholics down
through the centuries have claimed to have seen apparitions of Mary?Joseph Smith’s claims were obviously not singular in nature in the big
picture or human religious experience. They were, in fact, entirely
characteristic. But his claims, which would have been popularly plausible in
earlier ages, came in an time when science would seek rational explanations.I don’t object to psychological theories as long as we recognize
their limitations. Psychology is a highly subjective field of study which makes
its answers dubious as well.
Some people are more prone to hallucinating strange things and it is often times
a family trait, perhaps something inherited in the genes similar to some
Brahmabull,To your point, Joseph did show the plates to some of the
witnesses but to the three this was a divine manifestation as well. Though not
meant to back up Joseph, OnlytheCross correctly identifies the problem.
“Seeing the plates would only validate that Joseph had some plates, not
the validity of their supposed history.”If we are talking
likely scenarios, then I think we can stop talking about religion in general.
Religious histories are full of less than likely scenarios from 40 year trips in
the desert and seas parting to God sending his Son to be the intercessor for
disobedient mankind (and that is just the Judeo-Christian group).Yes, it would be great to have the plates. But how many minds do you think
that would change? As you state, we have the Dead Sea Scrolls. How many
therefore believe the Bible to be the word of God?
I object to the Deseret News censoring of explanations of reasons for mental and
physical apparitions being related to medical and/or physiological conditions.
My post is relevant to the subject and supported by medical science and common
sense. Please reconsider and post my comment. You don't have to agree,
never the less it is a plausible explanation.
That the testimony of any witnesses at all along with their sworn and signed
affidavits were offered in the first edition of the Book of Mormon points to
Joseph Smith’s anticipation of the skepticism he was bracing for. Mark
Twain, in his travel book Roughing It, offered his own characteristic
good-natured ribbing when he wrote, “I could not feel more satisfied and
at rest if the entire Whitmer family had testified."Joseph Smith
unwittingly invited skepticism by adding the testimony of witnesses in that
first edition. Subsequent history proved that to receptive readers and religious
seekers, it made no difference at all. That is the story of true faith.
So I just have to authenticate some plates, stones, or recordings of a
civilization that believed something and suddenly that ancient people's
religion is The Truth?Let me introduce you to the Aztecs, the
Mayans, the Druids, the Moonwalkers, the Sun Cult, the Moonies...
@Brahma:Seeing the plates would only validate that Joseph had some plates,
not the validity of their supposed history.If Moroni appeared on CNN
right now with 'his people's history', his gospel would still
violate the Biblical gospel message wirh it's salvation "after all that
you have done". The factual evidence of angels, old men with knapsacks, and
gold plates does nothing to supplant the efficacy of Paul's original gospel
and eye witness testimony of Christ on the Damascus Road. It verifies his
warning of Satan masquerading as "an angel of light."So men
can keep their stories and theories and witness accounts. The Apostle who
encountered the risen Christ warned:"I marvel that you are turning
away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different
gospel, which is not another (bonafide one); but there are some who want to
trouble you and pervert the gospel of Christ.But even if we or an angel
from heaven preach to you another gospel than the one we first preached to you,
let him be accursed."That warning in Galations 1:6-10, given
30-60 years after Christ's death, still serves Christians today.
TWIN So if I may clarify. Joseph Smith already had the plates in his
posession, at his home. Instead of showing the plates to the witnesses the same
way I would show something interesting to you, they went out in a field and
prayed that they could see them? So the angel went and took the plates from
Joseph's home and brought them out to the witnesses and showed them the
plates and them returned them to Joseph's house? Is that what you are
suggesting? Do you really consider that to be a likely scenario? It doesn't
make sense. If Joseph had the plates, he would have showed them to the witnesses
himself. That is my point. Yes, if the plates were real and we could
see them it could validate the story Joseph gave. Just like when any other
ancient text pops up around the world, it can be examined and translated. Last
time I checked the dead sea scrolls and other texts of ancient times
weren't taken up to heaven. They also don't have to be shown to
anybody by vision. Now why is that?
Someone above already mentioned this, but I note how the author was careful NOT
to give the name of the mysterious man/angel who showed the plates to Mary
Whitmer. I suspect this is because Mary always maintained that this angel was
named "Nephi," which doesn't fit into the current LDS narrative
(i.e., that the angel was "Moroni").
RE: Tyler D, these experiences are conditioned (why Christians see Christ and
Hindus see Vishnu) and subjective, and do not point to objective reality..Rudolf Otto's Concept of the "Numinous" the experience
that, underlies all religion. He calls this experience "numinous," and
says it has three components. These are often designated with a Latin phrase:
mysterium tremendum et fascinans. As mysterium, the numinous is "wholly
other"-- entirely different from anything we experience in ordinary life. It
evokes a reaction of silence.But the numinous is also a mysterium
tremendum. It provokes terror because it presents itself as overwhelming power.
Finally, the numinous presents itself as fascinans, as merciful and gracious.RE: EternalPerspective. Johnathan Edwards(Great awakening) was a
Christian preacher and is widely acknowledged to be America's most
important and original philosophical theologian," and one of America's
greatest intellectuals.Edward’s signs of Christian of
regeneration(Born again/from above): 1. One’s esteem of Christ’s is
elevated to an Orthodox Christology. 2. The awakening of the conscience of sin,
or a conviction of Sin 3. A greater regard for the Bible, which establishes the
more of the certainty of the Spirit of God.
BrahmabullIf you yourself could see the plates today, would you
believe? Would not doubt, just as you feel today, eventually creep in to
rationalize away the truth over time of what was witnessed of spiritual things
by physical senses?Faith does not come by signs, but signs follow
those who first exercise faith. This is God's prescribed method of
becoming "prepared" that He may reveal eternal truths, miracles,
blessings, and knowledge. Many in the Bible fell away from belief after
witnessing so great miracles.Either one is prepared to exercise
faith in things not seen, that God may reveal them, or they remain in doubt and
spiritual darkness until a day comes when they are sufficiently humble to
receive them. Does not the Bible in all its wisdom testify of these truths?It has and ever shall be that those who are sign seekers requiring
physical proof before they believe, will not know the works of God, nor receive
greater witnesses of divine truths because they refuse to exercise faith first.
If such were to receive signs without faith, God knows disbelief would return
the moment the reality of their witness is challenged by worldly
rationalizations and cares.
Brahmabull,Why an angel? Why does God ever send angels when men
could deliver the exact same message? I suppose to reinforce the point.Visions and dreams in the scriptures include a variety of physical
objects from lands and peoples to household objects to animals.You
bring up one of Whitmer's (reported) statements. Others are much clearer.
Yes, I understand there is variance but there are a lot of writers/reporters
with different "perspectives" and motives.Were the plates
shown to the Three Witnesses "by a supernatural power"? Obviously. It
was an angel.
Whittmer 1881: "The glorious messenger ... turned the leaves of the
plates."David Whitmer's ... answer to critic John Murphy in
1881. Murphy, a local farmer who had been a Protestant missionary, visited David
Whitmer in the summer of 1880, and the following January published a
reconstructed conversation that claimed David had essentially agreed that his
angelic vision was an inner feeling.Two months later, David
published a denial that his experience was subjective, insisting that his
printed testimony accurately reported the glorious messenger who turned the
leaves of the plates. He added statements affirming his personal integrity from
two dozen community leaders in Richmond, the county seat. He then asked
newspapers to publish this information in Hamilton, where Murphy's appeal
first appeared, and in Richmond, where David resided. The witness then
"printed and distributed" the material as a leaflet, reprinting it six
years later, in 1887, in his widely distributed An Address to All Believers in
Christ.From Maxwell Institute article cited above.BrahmaBull, you shouldn't just throw out ideas that you picked up who
knows where Please give us the authoritative source references.
Twin But why would an angel have to show them some physical, metal
plates? You state that it has happened in other instances, please clarify.Both Whitmer and Harris describe it as spiritual. If it wasn't by
vision or by spirit for all of them why would that be?? He wouldn't show
them physically to some, and spiritually to others. this is my point, it
doesn't add up. Here is what whitmer said:When asked in 1880
for a description of the angel who showed him the plates, Whitmer replied that
the angel "had no appearance or shape." Asked by the interviewer how he
then could bear testimony that he had seen and heard an angel, Whitmer replied,
"Have you never had impressions?" To which the interviewer responded,
"Then you had impressions as the Quaker when the spirit moves, or as a good
Methodist in giving a happy experience, a feeling?" "Just so,"
replied Whitmer. Whitmer interview John Murphy, June 1880Whitmer:
‘were shown to me by a supernatural power” (HC3:307)No
witness account states that they saw them uncovered. The pre-written statement
by Smith does, no other statement by any of the witnesses states that.
Brahmabull, the online article "Personal Writings of the Book of Mormon
Witnesses" and the Maxwell Institute gives these "signature" details
documented testimony of the witnesses:Richards emphasized that
Oliver "penned, with his own hand and in my presence, the testimony and
statement herewith." The statement is dated 13 January 1849, is addressed
"To Elder Samuel W. Richards," and ends with Oliver's signature.The short 1881 statement was signed by David Whitmer and was dated,
"Richmond, Mo., March 19, 1881."From Martin Harris,
"dated "Smithfield, Utah, Nov. 23d, 1870," and is signed "Martin
Harris." The entire text of the letter is included for insight into the man
and his testimony: I received your favor. In reply I will say concerning the
plates, I do say that the angel did show to me the plates containing the Book of
Mormon.I don't know of which exact document you speak of that
was not signed by the three witnesses, nor of any proof that it was not their
personal signatures on that particular document. I can imagine many publication
scenarios requiring replication of the original before copy machines. 1960 in
the Army I retyped many documents for copy purposes. Before typewriters?
@Twin Lights – “From 2 Corinthians 12…”Interesting account…Thoughts that come to mind are 1) these
sorts of accounts are ubiquitous in the spiritual literature, especially
Eastern; and 2) are they indications of objective reality? Susan
Blackmore, perhaps the foremost psi researcher of our time, was inspired to
become a scientist because of a powerful out-of-body (astral plane) experience
she had. She was a full on believer that these and many other spiritual
experiences were objectively real, but after decades of research she is now a
skeptic (regarding their objectivity and in some cases that they even happen
– e.g., telekinesis). Personally, I haven’t studied it
enough to reached any 100% conclusions, but I am strongly inclined to believe
these experiences are conditioned (why Christians see Christ and Hindus see
Vishnu) and subjective, and do not point to objective reality.But
(speaking from some personal experience) they are amazingly powerful and can
certainly change lives, so by that yardstick more power to them!
Brahmabull,As far as I know, only Martin Harris used the term you
cite.Joseph did show them to others (the Eight Witnesses). I am unfamiliar with the Oliver signing for all claim (all 11?) so I cannot
comment.There are a lot of physical objects shown to folks in vision
though I do not mean to say that this is what happened here.My point
is simply that, If we were in the presence of an angel, it is uncertain whether
we could later distinguish precisely what state we were in (and Paul indicated
that he could not).Sharrona,He was busy.
RE: Twin Lights.. "and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a
man to utter." Paul heard ‘Inexpressible’ things
that remain unknown because, he was not permitted to tell.J. C.
Whitmer,“I have heard my grandmother (Mary M. Whitmer) say on several
occasions that she was shown the plates of the Book of Mormon by an holy angel,
whom she always called Brother Nephi.” (John C. Whitmer, “The Eight
Witnesses”, The Historical Record, Volume 7, October, 1888, p. 621) “He called me by name, and said unto me that he was a messenger
sent from the presence of God to me, and that his name was Nephi.” (The
Times and Seasons Vol. III, pp. 749, 753)In modern printings of the
History of the Church, this has been changed to read “Moroni”. It is
interesting to note that Joseph Smith lived for two years after the name
“Nephi” was printed in Times and Seasons and he never published a
Interesting story. It seems a fundamental difference in Mary's witness,
was it's purpose was purely for her own needed edification. The other
eleven witnesses, though personally edified by their experiences, also had a
mission to testify for the edification of others. They left formal written
testimonies, signed by each of them, and still published in the front of the
sacred volume of which they testified. Does this mean Mary is the only
woman to actually see the plates? There were times Emma was close to the
plates, but each time I think they were wrapped in something, obscuring the
plates from view.
Also, Lucy Harris was a great witness. Marin's wife had a wonderful
testimony to what was going on.
Twin - Why in the world would anybody have to use their spiritual eyes to view
physical, gold, metal plates? That makes little sense. Joseph had posession of
them, so if Joseph could view them then he could have showed them to anybody
else. Then you have the 11 witnesses... None of them actually said
they saw the plates. The statement you see in the front of the book of mormon
was a pre-written document by Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery... it was also
never signed by the witnesses.. It has been proven that Oliver is the one who
signed all of their names. Please explain.
When the first 11 witnesses are confirmed then I will believe there is a 12th.
The 11 witnesses never signed their names to that pre-written document prepared
by Oliver and Joseph. And it has been proven that Oliver is the one that signed
all of the names of the witnesses. No witness has ever said they saw the plates
directly. Why would viewing actual physical plates of gold require spiritual
eyes to be used? It doesn't make sense. And when something doesn't
make sense it usually isn't true.
Tyler DFrom 2 Corinthians 12: I knew a man in Christ above fourteen
years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I
cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven. And I knew
such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God
knoweth;) How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words,
which it is not lawful for a man to utter.From this I take it that
the difference between what we see in vision and what we see in person may not
be so easily distinguished in some cases. I am also not sure the difference is
relevant as to what the person then knows by their experience.
Two things come to mind after reading this – if true it would follow that
dictating the BoM would involve Joseph, in real time, deciphering the plates
while the translation was being written down. Instead the BoM was apparently
dictated while Joseph was peering into a hat looking at a seer stone.Second, at least one of the witnesses while testifying in court sometime later
admitted that when he said they “saw” they plates, actually meant
that it was a “spiritual experience” that involved them seeing the
plates with their “spiritual eyes.”That this may all
come down to faith is fine, but a story as fantastic as this should at least be
consistent and not embellished to be something it was not.