T O P

Those gold tablets were quite a find

Those gold tablets were quite a find

Broclen

Please remember that the folks from LDS Church are welcome members of the r/DankChristianMemes community just like pretty much everyone else. We are all here to poke some fun at silly religious traditions, but remember to respect the real people in comments. And if you find yourself getting worked up, take a break before you get yourself reported. The point of this sub is to have fun together. ​ ![gif](giphy|js0dt5JLCU01bvlt7d)


zer0w0rries

I’ve seen this image maybe hundreds of times and I just noticed the shirt read “music⚡️band” now that’s funny.


nathangreer

Never noticed that either


phabiohost

He's also carrying 2 skateboards.


Mortress_

Is he?


Balonic

You can’t see it in this particular shot, but he has one down low tucked under his arm, and then the one slung behind his back.


tdaun

Correct, it's very brief in the scene, like maybe a second and you really only see it when he's in the background. But the 2 skateboards is my favorite detail.


Boetros

Im somewhat of an ancient text myself


Ramza_Claus

DO YOU KNOW HOW MUCH I SACRIFICED???


CleverInnuendo

Back to PAGANISM?


GlossyBuckthorn

It was the Lamanites, I had nothing to do with it!


furon747

Christians: “I was looking through some old ancient text and noticed something, similar.”


back_bithces

"It's a fake, Empire State Archeology department confirmed it"


GlossyBuckthorn

"We haven't printed a biblical retraction in over.... 20 years!"


Robottiimu2000

Love this!


MintPrince8219

I'm sure these comments will remain civil for a long time


WhoNeedsExecFunction

I mean, the Mormons are a pretty civil bunch. (At least in public groups when outnumbered by trinitarians.)


spacemagicexo539

Pretty civil, besides white Utah moms Source: a Mormon whose scared of white Utah moms


JpBlez5

Hello, Protestant here. I have a question I hope you can answer. What exactly makes Mormonism/LDS different from the usual Christian beliefs?


spacemagicexo539

Continuing revelation, Book of Mormon, open canon, living prophets, godhead of separate persons instead of traditional Trinity. There’s lots of stuff, this is kinda the basics


mitch3758

I always appreciate an open and honest question about the church. There have been a few high-level responses here that I like, but I wanted to refer you to what we call The Restoration to highlight some key differences. Now I’m not a historian in any way, but here’s a bit of backstory into why we call it that: When Christ was on the earth, he established the gospel and His church with His followers. After his crucifixion, resurrection, and assertion into heaven, the apostles took over to continue His work in the gospel. Eventually the apostles were killed, and the church started to slowly change with new teachings and doctrines that maybe have been similar and well-intentioned, but were ultimately not the correct doctrine. Eventually this became the Catholic Church. After a while, you get people like Martin Luther or John Calvin, who realized that there was something wrong; the teachings and practices of the Catholic Church were not in accordance with what Christ established. Over time, Protestantism and its different branches were formed in an effort to return to what Christ’s church was, but each with their own interpretation of what exactly the scriptures meant. Joseph Smith grew up in the enlightenment period with tons of preaching going on, and being concerned for the wellfare of his soul, he wondered which church was correct. He figured God wouldn’t be the author of so much confusion and dissension between different churches, as He was one God and should therefore have one doctrine. He studied the scriptures to figure out what he should do, and decided to pray about it. Part of our foundational belief about The Restoration (and the church in general) stems from Joseph Smith saying that prayer to ask which church was correct and having a vision in which he saw God and Jesus Christ. They appeared to him and told him that none of the churches was correct, each having pieces of the truth and correct doctrine, but none of them had the whole picture. Heavenly Father and Jesus called Joseph Smith to be a prophet to restore (hence Restoration) Christ’s church back onto the earth. What we as a church invite everyone to do is pray about what we share, and not just take our or anybody else’s word for it. Take a look at the whole picture: the history of the church, the Book of Mormon, talks and words of the living prophet and apostles—what the scriptures would call the “fruits” of the church—and pray about it to get an answer from Heavenly Father that what we teach is the truth. Like I said, I’m not a historian by any means, but I’ve prayed about what I’ve learned in the church throughout my life and received a confirming answer that it is the truth. I don’t know everything; I still have questions, but I do know that it’s true. Not that I’ve seen God or anything, but I know that He answers our prayers. TLDR: Christ’s established church drifted from its original doctrine, others reformed it and this created lots of churches and confusion for Joseph Smith. He prayed to know which church was correct and had a vision where God and Jesus told him that he shouldn’t join any of them, but needed to restore Christ’s original church. We invite all to do the same and pray about what we teach.


Warden_2102

Fastest answer possible: we reject ALL the creeds.


--Drew

Believing that we can become like God and populate and rule over our own worlds and be worshipped by our spirit children. Also that the Bible needed some tweaking by Joseph Smith


idcandidk

Funny thing is - the Mormon church realized how crazy the whole "becoming gods" thing makes them sound, so they're now backpedaling and saying that they never taught it.


kaehl0311

Really? As a Mormon myself, I was not aware of this. I thought a whole big part of our Plan of Salvation was the idea of eternal progression and being able to become like God some day (emphasis on the SOME DAY, not any time soon) but maybe that’s changed?


idcandidk

That's just the tip of the iceberg lol See this FAQ, #11, 12 https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/frequently-asked-questions Yet, the church flat-out lies. See below: https://www.reddit.com/r/exmormon/comments/oezhhv/mormons_becoming_like_god_making_spirit_children https://www.reddit.com/r/exmormon/comments/ofssfv/yep_it_was_never_taught_that_we_could_become_gods https://www.reddit.com/r/exmormon/comments/ocipbu/to_the_recent_backtrack_on_doctrine_of_becoming_a


kaehl0311

I appreciate you sending me some sources. That stuff from the LDS newsroom seems fine and doesn’t conflict with what I’ve been taught at all, and I tend to stay away from the exmormon subreddit because it’s very difficult to have a civil conversation with people that tend to only want to bash on, hate and revile my faith and myself, but I appreciate what you’ve linked here.


idcandidk

Funny. It 100% conflicts with what I was taught for the first 18 years of my life. It also 100% conflicts with other sources that are *still* on the church's own website. This whole ordeal is reminiscent of how Joseph Fielding Smith proclaimed, "If evolution is true, the church is false," but the church now tries to act like they have never taken such an anti-science position. Just as in that situation, the church 100% said that people will get their own planets, but now they try to backpedal and act like that was never taught. Look, I do not see how you seriously miss the contradiction in church teachings. I am not saying that the contradiction in any way invalidates the Church's truth-claims. But such a contradiction *absolutely* exists, and it's disappointing that you won't admit it.


--Drew

It’s changed in that they don’t emphasize the doctrine anymore, since investigators tend to be put off by the idea. Part of the distaste might be that members must pay a huge portion of their income to the church in order to qualify for the “God” tier of heaven.


idcandidk

It changed more than that. The church flat-out denies that "getting a planet" was part of doctrine. See #11, 12. https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/frequently-asked-questions


laosurvey

I'm not even sure why 'getting' a planet is a catching point. If you're a god having many planets is trivial.


--Drew

The church says that they don’t know—the doctrine is that we are spirit children of God, and therefore our spirits will grow up to be what He is. The implications of that doctrine are easy to satirize (such as the planet thing), but the doctrine, to me, seems unchanged.


Relic_Alshain_2113

As a fellow exmo I am going to push back on this a bit. Those two questions are definitely written in a very misleading way but they didn't change anything, they're just hoping to trick nonmembers into thinking the doctrine isn't so silly. #11. is the only question in that list where they conveniently leave off a yes or no. To a non member that explanation would sound like they're saying "no" but it's saying that the purpose is "to become like Him." What is he like? He's a God. It's super misleading but not a change of doctrine. #12. is similar, to a non member that will sound like the planet thing is just a big misunderstanding or joke, but to an active member it's not a problem because no where has it been taught "you will be given a planet for yourself". The teaching is that you if you reach that level where you have "become like God" then you will be able to make worlds of your own, but at no point does has anyone in a real position of authority claimed we would all get one single planet for ourselves. Still super misleading and worded like the cowards they are but it's just to sound less crazy when people Google the church, not a change in doctrine like so many other things they HAVE changed (black people in the preexistance, lgbtq stuff, etc)


TheAdmiralMoses

That is actually really interesting, I've always wondered where people were getting that from. I've asked my leaders and Missionaries and bishops, but nobody could give me a source rooted in scripture for the "getting your own world" but as for the becoming gods part, that's in the Bible. The distinction is god's, little g. In the old testament, see Psalms 82:6 In the New testament, see John 10:32-37


angels-fan

Not like gods... We can become a god.


_i_am_root

What’s the difference? Both are inexplicably crazy.


Mystshade

Why? If God is our father, why is it so impossible to think we could someday become like him?


_Banderbear_

One Big difference I gathered when talking to some Mormons, they don't believe Jesus is God, only "the son of God"


Randvek

They are nontrinitarians, yes, but not the only ones.


Uintahwolf

3 heavens Manifest destiny was a pretty big thing for a time. Baptism starts at 8 years old Mission work is REQUIRED to get to rich people heaven , I mean super heaven, I mean celestial kingdom where God is. Paying your 10% of your income to the church is REQUIRED to get into rich people heaven The book of Mormon Garden of eden believed to have been located in ... I think Illinois Jesus came to South America after floating up to the sky in the middle east after his resurrection Don't need to worry about going to hell if you don't confess your sins on your death bed No hell for unbaptised children The holy trinity are separate beings (I think) rather than them being separate yet the same. Theres more I didn't list.


Mystshade

Actually Mormons are taught that everyone will get into heaven. There are three degrees of glory within heaven, but (almost) everyone will get in somewhere.


abcedarian

I think you mean "where Heavenly Father is"


sykemol

Ex-mo here. IMO, none of those things are any wackier than any other part of traditional Christianity. Compare with say, the great flood (which Mormons also believe in)


Uintahwolf

Well yes all religion is whacky. The particular wackiness of Mormonism is definitely unique though considering, unlike the majority of other Christian sects , they believe in a "modern" book AND the Bible.


BlessTheKneesPart2

Probably the part about Missouri and Utah being of any biblical importance.


MintPrince8219

I was referring to everyone else towards us lol


Danalogtodigital

youre welcome here, report anyone who says otherwise, this sub is supposed to be chill. you dont have to be one of us to be safe here.


Reference-Getter

Yeah Morning brand is basically just be nice


thememelordofRDU

Well, they are now anyway. They didn't used to be: http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/carthage/expositororder.html


Kjrb

I mean we're all Christians, we've all had a fair share of people using our religion while doing really had things


ThirdAlgol

Sort of. A small sample will fly off the walls at the thought off someone insulting their religion, but most will instead take a more passive aggressive route because getting angry is “too worldly.”


TheRealTJ

[King Josiah finding the original Torah](https://imgur.com/a/kHKghtx)


VictorLDX

I know it's a meme page but could you explain me what you mean ?


TheRealTJ

While renovating the temple under Josiah's reign, priests claimed to have found a lost book of the law (arguably, a predecessor text to the Torah). This scroll was used to justify draconic state power in the name of a new covenant. Just pointing out that the Book of Mormon is not the only holy text found under suspiciously convenient circumstances.


OligarchyAmbulance

I kind of feel like finding a scroll like that in the location you would expect to find it is pretty plausible though.


HintOfAreola

"Exactly! And that's all the time we have for questions. Thanks for coming everyone. My scroll is now canon. So long!" - King Josiah


el_palmera

Do you know where the plates were found and under what circumstances


ProposalLegal1279

The Mormon plates were “found” when presented by an angel, in a small stone box on a small hill in NY conveniently outside this new prophet’s home. He also had a history of “money digging” and superstition.


RickyNixon

The scroll was Deuteronomy, right?


TheRealTJ

That's definitely a pervading theory. But it's something that is pretty heavily debated amongst historians and biblical scholars and I will not pretend to be an expert.


sithjustgotreal66

If the New Testament happens to be accurate and Jesus is who he said he was, then his very high degree of confidence in the reliability of the Old Testament should be imitated.


VictorLDX

Thank you!


pl233

Well yeah but that actually happened, because it's in the Bible! The Book of Mormon is fake because we don't use it at my church!


ProposalLegal1279

This person gets it 👌


WhoNeedsExecFunction

Ah shoot. That’s way danker than me dunking on BoM. Making me look bad.


Robottiimu2000

He did "find" it *in The Temple*.. so at least it has that going for it....


TheAdmiralMoses

Am Mormon... That's fair.


jtaustin64

You guys always take everything in stride.


ACubeInABox

I’ve always thought that if Imma say I believe in a primordial being who passes judgement from on high, especially with all the modern science that can explain practically everything, I can afford to laugh at myself.


ThirdPoliceman

There’s no point in being combative. We’ve just found that life is easier and more people are interested in having a discourse when we roll with the punches.


Bojangly7

You could say the same about their wives


el_palmera

what


RustyShadeOfRed

Nowadays polygamy results in immediate excommunication from the church. It’s SUPER not allowed


ExmoThrowaway0

Unless you're already sealed to a woman who has died, then it's okay because you're only married to one woman that's alive at a time, and then polygamy will continue after you and your wives have all died.


RustyShadeOfRed

Yeah it’s kinda confusing and hard to simplify


MooseMaster3000

So why are you still?


TheAdmiralMoses

Mostly because the older people in the church seem to be such genuinely nice people, and I want to be like that when I get older.


MooseMaster3000

I thought so too, and even still thought so after I left. But then the realization struck that many of them lived through 1978. They saw the organization have to backtrack on its blatant racism, and still stayed. That rubs me the wrong way.


TheAdmiralMoses

They shouldn't have stayed with an organization that went from racist to not? Is that not like saying all Americans who were alive for the civil rights movements should've moved out? I don't quite follow


MooseMaster3000

The fact is they were *in* a racist organization and saw no problem with the fact it waited so long *after* the civil rights movement to change its racist policy. And no, asking someone to leave a religion/cult is not like asking them to move to another country. That should be obvious. But in a similar vein, if I found out my great grandfather was a policeman who stood by while his coworkers blasted protestors with fire hydrants, I’d lose any respect for him.


manwiththehex18

*Joseph Smith was called a prophet* *Dum dum dum dum dum*


McDrakerson

I'm gonna take you back to Biblical times... 1823


bmorekareful

'Murica!


mahareeshi

Lucy Harris smart smart smart, Martin Harris duummmb


bmorekareful

He found golden pages in upstate New York... and they think Jesus is from space.


AppropriateTouching

I mean technically everything is from space


bmorekareful

Are you saying we're all just space dust?


AppropriateTouching

I think so. I don't know I'm dumb as shit.


reluctantclinton

Mormons don’t believe Jesus is from space. They believe that heaven is a physical location somewhere in the universe, but Jesus was born on Earth through divine conception just as the Bible says.


bmorekareful

I guess it's all about interpretation https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mormon\_cosmology#:\~:text=Because%20Mormonism%20holds%20that%20Jesus,and%20teachings%20refers%20to%20planets


artpoint_paradox

I want to know what that man was smoking


ProposalLegal1279

There are some theories hallucinogens were involved.


Korzag

Shower thought: someday the Book of Mormon will be considered an ancient text, even if it's not historically true.


AdmiralAthena

"You are technically correct, the best kind of correct."


WhoNeedsExecFunction

Woah As u/TheRealTJ pointed out, thats what a lot of scholars think Deuteronomy is. “Discovered” by King Josiah.


Robottiimu2000

All texts are written and discoverd by someone...


WhoNeedsExecFunction

Well, like, “discovered” as in they claimed it was much older than it was. Conservative Christians try to claim the earliest possible dates for the Gospels, but it’s not like when they were actually published, the authors said “this is from 50AD” (as far as we know). On the other hand, the pastoral epistles and some books claiming to be written by Paul (e.g. 1 & 2 Timothy) certainly weren’t written by who they claim to be written by, so maybe those actually *are* examples of “discovered” scriptures.


one_byte_stand

If you believe Joseph Smith it’s super ancient, just recently translated and written down. So…kinda? Like the Book of Abraham, translated from “reformed Egyptian” which is not a real language. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Abraham Check out that spicy controversy and criticism section.


itwasbread

If the first thing you check on a Wikipedia page ISN'T the controversy and criticism section, what are you doing?


Mandrake1771

“farrago of nonsense from beginning to end” is my new catchphrase


Kjrb

Reading through the wiki now and the book of Joseph predates the book of Abraham lmao


ProposalLegal1279

An ancient fake ancient text.


thememelordofRDU

Only if Mormonism becomes the dominant world religion


Korzag

Not necessarily. True, once Mormonism finally loses its public mask of being a religion for what it actually is (an investment firm), then the religion will fade into obscurity, but nevertheless, assuming no cataclysmic event occurs that sends humanity back a thousand years happens, literature that exists today will exist in archives that will be easily accessed by future generations. Plus, Mormons have a thing for time capsules and I'm sure there are BoMs planted around the world in boxes waiting to be discovered if such cataclysmic event occurs.


Doctapus

I live in Utah, Mormons aren’t going anywhere.


Korzag

Same. At least for a few generations it's not going anywhere. The church is crumbling though.


MisanthropicData

The same thing was probably said about the bible 2000 years ago.


Voidsabre

The earliest copies of biblical texts we have are almost 3000 years old so at the very least your math is off


MisanthropicData

Depends on which part you're talking about.


Voidsabre

Which is exactly why your comparison doesn't hold water. The book of mormon is a single document coming from a single unverifiable sourse ~200 years ago. The Bible is a collection of various ancient texts all of which are at LEAST 1900 years old and many of which are present in older, more complete, and more numerous ancient manuscripts than many historical records that we today almost unanimously hold as factual historical record Not even the same ballpark, all they really have in common is "scripture for an offshoot abrahamic religion"


MisanthropicData

Age as already agreed doesn't matter. The number of manuscripts also doesn't matter. Just because something was popular doesn't mean it's true. What matters is if it's verifiable or not.


Enion-Smith

Context...?


lemon_lion

An angel told a 14 year old Joseph Smith where to find “gold plates” buried in New York with a record chiseled into them by ancient Americans, that sailed there from Israel. Joseph Smith then waited 7 years to go get them, but didn’t show them to a soul. He then looked at some rocks in a top hat as he told his scribes what to write down, which became the “translation” of the Book of Mormon. Yes, this is actually what Mormons believe. Oddly enough, it has roughly the same story and setting as some popular fiction novels Joseph Smith likely read as a boy. Edit: missed a word


better_off_red

Isn’t there something in the story about the scribe’s wife hiding the texts and seeing if he could translate them the same again?


D0uble2

Yes. He then said he couldn’t retranslate them word for word since they were touched by the devil, but coincidentally the next book in the Book of Mormon is from the perspective of his son during the same time, meaning it’s the exact same events from a different perspective!


spacemagicexo539

You’re mixing up a couple stories. She replaced Joseph’s seer stone (those things were pretty common in the 1800s, and he used one for part of the translating) and he said he couldn’t translate using the fake one. Keep in mind, she claimed he didn’t know she replaced it. The other story is where the first part of the book was given to one of Joseph’s scribes because his wife wanted to see the transcript (the scribe, Martin Harris, had invested a lot into this book, and she wanted some evidence that this was real in any way.) while they had the transcript, it was lost, and Joseph claimed he couldn’t retranslate it because the stolen transcript would be used to try and discredit him.


Ramza_Claus

That proves that Joseph Smith was for real!


el_palmera

You are misinforming people. Multiple people outside of Joseph's own family saw the plates. The first pages of the BoM even contain those peoples witness of seeing the plates. Also we do not know what the part he could not translate contained. We only know it's author, not that he wrote about the same things that his son did


nobrow

The witness accounts are pretty sketchy at best. https://www.mrm.org/eleven-witnesses


ExmoThrowaway0

What is the misinformation? The lost 116 pages couldn't be retranslated because the Lord didn't want evil men to prove Joseph a fraud through changes in the manuscript. That's why the Lord commanded Nephi to write his own experiences. That's why Nephi says that he doesn't know why he's making these plates other than that God has a special purpose for them.


el_palmera

Yeah exactly it was different content from what was lost. Feel free to re read my post for the misinformation. Though I probably won't respond again to "exmothrowaway" again lol


ExmoThrowaway0

Peace friend. Just because I'm exmormon doesn't mean I'm against you. Just because I don't believe anymore doesn't mean I don't know what the Book of Mormon says. I'm sorry if that makes you feel that you can't respond. I reread your post multiple times, that's why I asked what the misinformation is. If I understand right, you don't agree with u/D0uble2 that the two books would be the "exact same events from a different perspective"? Doesn't Nephi confirm this in 1 Nephi 1:16–17? Granted, he didn't write every vision and revelation Lehi wrote, but he did make an abridgement. I assume that both wrote of their journey out of Jerusalem, their travels in the wilderness, their crossing the ocean, and their settling of the Promised Land. Which would be the same events, right? EDIT: misspelled u/D0uble2 's username


betarulez

What a shame that you would not respond to anyone that is ex-mormon. Would you also not speak to someone who has never been a Mormon but has heard the teachings and rejected the religion? What a poor way to spread the message you hold so dear to your heart.


ProposalLegal1279

Even the Gospel Topics Essays say that Nephi summarized what was in Lehi’s book and included his own stuff too. So it was the same, plus extra. No misinformation there.


el_palmera

A summary and a whole new slew of events. That ain't the same as whatever was summarized


Del_Parson_Painting

Former Mormon, can confirm. Except the Mormon church hid the part about looking at a rock in a hat from members until just recently. It's not going over well!


ProposalLegal1279

Especially when compared to their theory on the Book of Abraham, saying he needed no manuscript at all, just an erroneous source text for inspiration! Then what’s the purpose of the Gold Plates if he couldn’t read Egyptian and didn’t even look at the words?!


Reference-Getter

First paragraph is true. Second paragraph is false. It's easy to debunk, the texts don't resemble other books available at the time but this claim is made frequently as a talking point. When you start posting sources and actually review years, what was written, it's not hard to debunk quickly.


Del_Parson_Painting

Its storyline is very similar to "View of the Hebrews" by Ethan Smith (Amerindians are actually seafaring Israelites, good fair-skinned tribe vs. bad dark-skinned tribe, etc.) and the King James English linguistic style closely resembles books like "The Late War." Basically Smith wrote a book with very similar themes to other books that had been recently published. It's like if I tried to write a dystopian young adult novel about an archer named Katia and her love interest Petey. No one's going to wonder where I got the idea for my book. It's all a moot point now because we know unequivocally from DNA testing and archaeology that indigenous Americans are descended from east Asians that crossed the Bering land bridge about 15,000 to 20,000 years ago.


not_a_meme_farmer

Yeah you’re right... farm boys with no formal education surprisingly made amazing writers in the 1800s. In less than 85 days while being persecuted, forced to move multiple times, etc. he created a fictional novel out of thin air while also complicating the big lie with witnesses to the gold plates and visitations from ancient Apostles restoring supposed Authority and Keys. Judge a book by its contents not its supposed authors or translators. Oh no, wait, let’s focus on William Tyndale and his frailties and therefore conclude the English Bible is also a fictional book.


Del_Parson_Painting

Um, the English Bible _is_ a fictional book, for the most part. But anyway... >farm boys 23 year old man. >no formal education He had about the same formal education as Mark Twain. >amazing writers The Book of Mormon isn't that good. The characters are all one-dimensional, the storyline repeats itself multiple times, and roughly 1 in 9 chapters are copied nearly verbatim from the King James Bible. >In less than 85 days He started telling people about the plates about 5 years before he produced any writing. That's 5 years to think through the plot and characters. His own mother said that as a teenager he would regularly regail the family with stories about the ancestors of the American Indians. Plenty of dress rehearsals for his big show. >Judge a book by its contents I've read the Book of Mormon cover to cover about a dozen times. I get it. I used to believe the same apologetic answers you've given here. If you are only listening to the church's story about this, I'm sorry to tell you that they are misleading you. I wasted a lot of time by letting church leaders scare me away from doing any research into Smith's claims. I'm glad I finally did.


ButterflyEvening789

I've read the Book of Mormon cover to cover about a dozen times. Same. Served a Mormon mission bla bla. The BOM is boring and has terrible grammar and is insanely repetitive. Even when I was a believer I didn't think it was all that impressive (probably why I'm writing this comment now..bada bing). Could I write a book that 1. 20% of it is literally copied word for word from the Bible, with literally hundreds of others phrases taken directly from said book. 2. And where the main plot is widely believed (that American Indians were actually Israelites) during my time, with multiple other books already written around the same idea; and then just say that ancient Indians were Christians who believed in 19th century Protestantism? yeah, I think I could pull that off.


not_a_meme_farmer

Upvoted your response. I totally agree you can’t just close yourself off to one side of speak. Sadly I think a lot of members of the Church, probably like many other religions, suffer from a form of brain-washing compared to individual and independent thought and self-discovery. I can’t argue you on what you feel you have discovered for yourself. Personally I don’t like the “apologetic” discussion points because I think it’s dangerous to build a testimony of something by the details around it versus the actual material. For me I have found the writings impactful on my life and have helped me come closer to Christ. I have found myself find answers to my personal questions. Thankfully I learned in an environment not forced like most of the Mormon-belt of the Southwest. I find it hard to believe it’s a fake story based on the personal experiences I have had, but to each their own. I do firmly believe we can receive spiritual confirmation/premonition regarding the validity of things we encounter in our lives, so the supposed prophet Moroni’s promise to ask God if these things aren’t true, I found my answers multiple times throughout life. For what it’s worth, I think the argument regarding how entertaining or dimensional the characters are isn’t the best judge of the book. Is the Book of Mormon supposed to be a story book? Clearly in sections like Enos you see Prophets admit they cared less about writing their history/experiences, and others shared detailed parts of their experiences with Christ and wickedness and slothfulness with the way of discipleship. FWIW, thanks for sharing your thoughts!


ProposalLegal1279

I used to believe that prayer and spiritual feelings were the best way to find truth too. Look into the concept of elevation emotions or moral elevation.


[deleted]

[удалено]


lemon_lion

None of them could say that straight out, though. They all had conflicts of interest and/or frequently said they saw things only in a spiritual realm. It’s as legitimate as me saying, “God showed me you should join my book club, and since I stand by that, you should believe it too!” Besides, the “testimonies” at the front of the Book of Mormon were signed on their behalf by Joseph Smith. https://read.cesletter.org/witnesses/#magical-worldview


el_palmera

This article is so incredibly biased. Oliver Cordero was a school teacher when he met Smith. He wasn't a treasure hunter. And on top of that Whitmers testimony is discounted because he said he saw God? How does that work? His testimony of religious things is false because he also has another testimony of a religious thing?


2112eyes

A guy in Canada decapitated a Greyhound passenger because "God told him to." Is his testimony false because it is religious in nature?


Demostecles

NONE confirmed seeing the plates with their physical eyes. You know, the ones in their head that we see with.


Captain___Sassy

Yeah, whatever happened to those??


Xorphias

They got taken up into heaven by an angel after being translated


Suulace

How convenient ;)


Warden_2102

Yeah, how convenient that everything that would definitively prove the existence of God disappeared. Like all evidence of the Jews in Egypt. Or the resurrected people at the time of the Crucifixion.


Suulace

Apparently God is a trickster! Planted evidence to contradict the Bible and everything as a tRuE tEsT oF fAiTh


workmanse32

It was pretty audacious of Joseph to make the claim that he did. Have you ever read the BOM?


ACubeInABox

>Kid from NY claims to have found ancient texts >Forms church >Leaves


69isverynice

If by leave u meant shot by angry mobs than yeah, I guess leave


ChewyChicken13

>Steals wives and knocks up underage girls


ACubeInABox

Not denying that, but I thought he had no confirmed offspring from his plural wives.


spacemagicexo539

Not really. At all 1. He was ‘sealed’ to a couple married women, which basically only applies to after you die. For context, most of those women were married to men who weren’t in the church and therefore didn’t even believe in sealing 2. Once again, it was just sealing. There is no evidence he was ever even in a room alone with her, and they were not married Yes, polygamy was weird and bizarre, no it doesn’t happen anymore


section8sentmehere

There are more than a few first hand accounts from journals that say that that’s probably not accurate. Don’t mean to start anything, but I used to think the same thing.


everything_is_free

Yeah. Both commenters are overstating their cases. There is no evidence that Smith ever impregnated any teenage girls (or any woman other than his first wife). But there is enough evidence in the form of statements and testimony from the people involved to conclude that he almost certainly had sexual relations with at least some of his plural wives.


spacemagicexo539

He likely did, my point was he he didn’t have sexual relations with any women who were already married, or the one who was underage


everything_is_free

At a minimum, this is an area of strong debate between historians. I recommend checking out the debates/exchanges between Brian Hales (argues Smith did not have sex with any wives married to other men) and D Michael Quinn (argues he did). This debate is also an excellent model for civil scholarly disagreement over charged and controversial issues. I would also check out Todd Compton’s book. In the end, I think the preponderance of the evidence indicates that Smith probably slept with some of these women, but not others. But I will concede the evidence is unclear and often ambiguous.


sykemol

In the Temple Lot case, several of Joseph's widows testified they had sex with him.


the_loan_dinosaur

It’s funny to me that 2 is even an argument. Even if you accept the claim that there’s no evidence Smith had sex with his 40 wives, most of whom he married in secret, his direct successor and the next prophet of the Mormon church had 56 children with 55 wives. Was Brigham Young not a real prophet then? Why is there such a need to defend Joseph Smith from this if it’s ok for the next prophets to do it?


spacemagicexo539

I articulated that point poorly. That was only referring to currently married women in Jospehs case. Yes, he practiced polygamy with other women, who he actually married


AmericanSchnitzel

God can do all things, as long as I agree with it


WhoNeedsExecFunction

Huh? What’s the connection? Its not a wrong (sarcastic) sentiment, I just don’t follow


AmericanSchnitzel

Christians saying beliefs of another Christian sect or any religion for that matter are impossible is funny because of the belief in an all powerful God. God can speak to prophets in Israel thousands of years ago, but nowhere else in the world and at no other time. Jesus can rise from the dead and walk on water, but him appearing to Joseph Smith is too far fetched. Once you've said God can do all things you can't really revoke that claim whenever it challenges your beliefs.


zibzabelsborg

Wouldn’t this imply that the Book of Mormon is older and trying to fit in with newer txts?


WhoNeedsExecFunction

I love this. It fits, right? (Honestly I don’t know exactly how old the Mormon texts are claimed to be. )


fizzeler

The Book of Mormon timeline jumps around a bit, but most of the books contain events from approximately 600 B.C to 400 A.D., and one book contains records from the Jaredite civilization who began at the Tower of Babel and began around approximately 2200 B.C.. So at the oldest, a small portion of gold plates would’ve been around 4000 years old, whereas most would be closer to 2000 years old (in Joseph Smith’s day).


TheFelRoseOfTerror

It starts about 600 BC, though the book of Ether is something that apparently preceded that time frame by a while. Edit: Source: Am Mormon. And most decent copies have circa dates in the corners of the pages.


raiseurheadnsayno

The story picks up in 600 BCE. Further into the book, an earlier group is mentioned, but I forget the claimed date. The dates used to be printed on every page (or chapter?), but as they've realized how poorly it aligns with archeology, they've started emphasizing the "spiritual truth" more than the historical. You can still find people selling tours to "Book of Mormon lands" and books, etc, but the Church's current attitude for their members is more along the lines of "trust us, there's loads of historical evidence, but we have these more pressing things you should be focused on rather than looking into it".


MooseMaster3000

The problem is it has too many details that anyone with any knowledge of history even at the time wouldn’t have included. Gotta be nice and vague so you can’t be proven wrong, like somehow never mentioning which pharaoh Moses freed your people from.


sithjustgotreal66

There are plenty of times when Exodus is very specific about things. There could be a million reasons for referring to Pharaoh simply as Pharaoh other than intentional vagueness.


MooseMaster3000

Being specific means nothing when your story is made up in the first place. Even if we pretend there are valid explanations for why a writer that’s fine with saying they murdered Egyptian children would omit the pharaoh’s name, the fact there’s never been any historical evidence found to support the story is pretty damning.


sithjustgotreal66

Your first sentence is the opposite of the point you were trying to make in your previous comment. I don't really care if you have your reasons for rejecting the validity of Exodus, just be sure to pick consistent reasons.


i_hate_vampires

I try not to belief bash because some things I believe are weird for others…the story of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith is wild af.


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i_hate_vampires

Weren’t there horses in N. America before the ice age and they just went extinct like the saber toothed tiger? Also, I didn’t say it was incorrect or wrong because it’s the Mormon belief that it’s right…it’s not my place to say whether it is or isn’t…that would be “belief bashing”…which we don’t do here my guy. Please take your “the Bible is wrong” over to r/atheism.


laosurvey

I believe those horses were much smaller than modern horses. I think too small to ride (but who knows what the could pull)


sithjustgotreal66

If the New Testament happens to be accurate and Jesus is who he said he was, then his very high degree of confidence in the reliability of the Old Testament should be imitated.


JareBear137

This is funny. Source: im Mormon


AppropriateTouching

My favorite Christian fan fiction.


Clilly1

Idk, have you ever read the Gospel of Thomas? Its a real thrill ride


cats4life

“Let’s not base your entire life on a religion that is old enough for my dad to say, ‘oh, yeah, that didn’t happen,’” - Daniel Tosh


Suulace

Lemuel is one of the big villains in the Book of Mormon. There was a debt collector that hounded Joseph Smith's family trying to take their farm to pay the debt. His name? Lemuel Herrick. Should tell you all you need to know about the origins of that character and also the whole book...


Typical_Mormon

If anyone's interested, there is a whole small subculture being formed in the last decade around leaving mormonism. They discuss the pain and sorrow and joy they go through dealing with that process on this subreddit r/exmormon/


ExmoThrowaway0

Thank you for the exposure! Not sure what the downvotes are for.


Typical_Mormon

Probably from salty active mormons. They don't like to acknowledge the problematic history of their (my old) religion.


NelyafinweMaitimo

I'm also a former Mormon, but this sub is soooo fucking toxic. Hot take? "Online exmormonism" isn't worth it. It's helpful if you're newly leaving the church and you want some resources, but don't stick around. It just absolutely sucks.


TooDumTooLive

As an atheist I get a kick out of watching all these people critiquing each other as if their own faith isn't questionable XD


psychosocial--

Dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb…


Mish4life

The Book of Mormon is the best Christian text since the New Testament itself, and the best part is, it's actually true


TheLastMandalore

Well debatably


Mish4life

Everything is debatable if you talk to the right person


Imalreadygone21

Hilarious 😆


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ExmoThrowaway0

\> Nephi didn't kill Laban for it. He was commanded to do it, and was completely justified in doing so, because of the old Jewish laws: an eye for an eye? He literally tried to murder people twice. As a prophet, it was Nephi's responsibility to bring justice upon a thief, liar, and attempted murderer. Unless you criticize those laws as well, but your framing is pretty leading. I don't think Nephi is off the hook for killing Laban. Nephi writes his justification for killing Laban in the 1 Nephi 4: 10-17: 1. Spirit constrains him to kill Laban. 2. The Lord ensured he was defenseless (delivered into Nephi's hands). 3. Laban had sought (commanded) to take Nephi's life. 4. Laban doesn't keep the commandments. 5. Bring to pass the Lord's purposes. 6. To preserve the laws of God for his prosperity. (2) is an awful reason to kill anyone. "Because I can," isn't much justification. (6) doesn't make much sense to me. If God can reveal his word so easily to Lehi and Nephi, why can't he also reveal the law? I understand the law is long, but why not bring parchment copies of the law to transcribe on their own plates instead? With Lehi's wealth, I doubt it would have been too difficult for him to obtain a copy of the law. They used to keep the law in phylacteries even (though I don't know when they started doing that). (1), (3), and (5) (EDIT: Just (1) and (5)) are very religious reasons, and thus are pretty subjective. I don't think that reasoning would hold up in court today, and possibly not even back then. Just because someone says that God told them to do something (especially murder) doesn't make it okay. If someone claimed God was telling them to kill me I would call that person a lunatic, not a prophet. But even if God really did sanction him, does that make it okay that Nephi killed Laban? It depends on whether you believe God is the source of morality or is bound by it. If anything God says is de facto moral, then anything we might see as terrible could be moral if God does/commands it. In my opinion, that's not much reason to absolve Nephi, but I'd understand if you disagree. I'd say that's reason to call God Himself immoral. If God can't find a better way to handle Laban, he's not omnipotent, in my opinion. I think (3) is the best argument (and the one you pointed out, I might add). The best I can find about attempted murder is in Deuteronomy 19:16–20, in regards to false murder witness. The false witness would be put to death because they tried to accuse someone of murder specifically so that they would be put to death. So, under Jewish law, Laban would need to stand before the Judges. Nephi cut that short, meting judgement himself illegally. In short, in a legal sense, Nephi murdered Laban. In a moral sense, it depends on your stance about whether God dictates morality or is ruled by it, and whether Nephi was really commanded by God at all. \> I don't know what you're trying to say with the urim and thummim? How could someone use translators to translate a book that they do not have?? Why even use them for translation when you can actually read the language? The Urim and Thummim were used for more than just translation. Technically, I should have said "Seer Stone," to be more accurate. Some early saints called Joseph's seer stone a Urim and Thummim, but I believe the church distinguishes them as different now. The 116 pages were translated using the Urim and Thummim. After the Urim and Thummim were taken away from Joseph for losing the pages, Joseph translated using the Seer Stone in a hat. He wasn't directly looking at the plates themselves, and in some cases the plates weren't even near him. If the seer stone could show Joseph - not only the words themselves - but the translations, why were the plates really necessary at all then? There could be a reason, but from what I know, it doesn't make much sense. Joseph found that seer stone while digging a well. Why couldn't Nephi also have found a seer stone from the Lord, negating the whole need to get plates from Laban at all? Killing Laban would have launched investigations, bringing suspicion on Lehi's family that just happened to skip town with Zoram coincidentally around the same time. And God could have meted justice on Laban in other ways or through other people, it didn't have to be Nephi. \> "A different viewpoint" yeah, how dare those Yankee bastards kill the Nazis for a different political position. How dare they prevent a coup by killing the aristocracy. Or how about we look at a more modern example. The Taliban just retook a large portion of the country back from the US puppet democracy, similar to Capt. Moroni retaking the city of Zarahemla. Is the Taliban justified in killing all of the Afghan officials that won't pledge allegiance to the Taliban, including the Taliban's interpretation of the Koran? The Taliban believe they are enforcing Allah's will, and that Allah's will is always right. Anyone opposing Allah is immoral. \> An angel that told the opposite of everything that came from God. Just a little critical thinking would have saved him, or admitting that that was what happened during the council. Been a while since I read that story, but that's a terribly disingenuous take. Also, what even is your criticism with how he died? It was by a group of people who hated poor people, not even the Nephites. Is it that God didn't save him? That's kinda dumb. I don't know about you, but I've never seen an angel. Nor a devil disguised as an angel. I have no idea what kind of critical thinking it would take to overcome that experience. I'd imagine a devil that has been alive for eons would be pretty well acquainted with persuasion and critical thinking. Should have shaken his hand, I guess. Or... failed to shake his hand. Either way, I don't like that the Book of Mormon presents this as a moral. It smells too much like a Grimm fairy tale. The man is tricked by a devil into tricking everyone else. Then God smites him for denying God's existence and asking for a sign from a prophet. (strange that lots of people do that very thing without being smitten blind (EDIT: mute, not blind). Good thing they aren't in the presence of a prophet. I've even known people who have asked for signs and received them... at least in their opinion). Then, the man is trampled to death and dies a poor wretch. So don't ask God for a sign, otherwise you too will be smitten helpless and trampled. \> Last point: how is that ANY different than the great flood? You probably know why God did that, don't you? I guess not, because it seems to me that you are an atheist. What other kind of person would be able to suspend their disbelief while reading the scriptures just enough to believe that God killed all those people, but not that He actually exists and therefore there isn't actually any consequences for death. Well, aside from leaving children and family behind, but not if all of them are gone too. And no more children growing up in sin or persecuting the church, an inevitability if things would have continued on. Do I need to remind you about the day that the Nephite apostates planned to literally kill all of those who did believe, and mocked them all the while? And that wasn't even their lowest point. "We believe that man shall be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam's transgression." Oh, except for the sins of their wicked parents. And great grandparents. And sins that our ancestors commit over 1000 years ago (dark skin marks being curses). I don't care how wicked the parents are, children are not at fault for their parents' sins, and don't deserve to be drowned, burned, buried alive, nor starve. No one is responsible for sins they have not yet commit, especially not children. It's even doctrinal that children are not accountable until the age of 8. “But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea”. Death matters to some degree whether you believe in a God or not. Those babies, infants, toddlers, and young children would have endured unimaginable agony, terrified and abandoned. What demon of a deity would do that? But I guess it's okay so long as they are rewarded afterward and get a second chance during the Millenium /s. Also, I don't appreciate the ad hominem attack comparing me and other atheists to bloodthirsty monsters that secretly want to murder everyone that believes in God. As an exmormon and an atheist, I must be just like those Nephite apostates, right? If you really believe that, then I feel sorry for you. I hope that's not what you're trying to say. I think we can get along without having the same religious beliefs and without such petty caricatures.


Warden_2102

Oh wow skimmed that. Look forward to this tomorrow. Yeah, that was a generalization made after my own observations. It only really applies to the dumber ones. I don't know, it just is something that I constantly see, and thought I saw it in your comment. Not taking the whole picture into consideration and projecting yourself onto scriptures is something that I see almost every time I see any atheist argument. It bothers me because it reeks of bad faith arguments, fallacies, or something akin to illiteracy.


gnostic_nausea_

Shout out to Solomon Spaulding RIP