SCEPTIC.INFO  Free your mind - question!


In A.A. Hoekema’s book, Mormonism, he argues from the language and transmission of the Book of Mormon that it is a hoax.


He observes that God is not likely to give us a new Bible in a totally unknown language, Reformed Egyptian, that has never been proved to exist when he wrote the Bible in known tongues. Mormons would say it does not matter as long as the BOM was translated right by the power of God. I say one would expect God to have told Smith to copy the characters that he translated so that the miracle could be proved. It would have been impossible for Smith to invent a language and alphabet like Egyptian.


It is absurd that Nephi wrote in Egyptian on the Plates when he could have used his native Hebrew. The Jews were not interested in Egyptian. Incredibly the Book of Mormon even says that the Plates of Laban were written in Egyptian (Mosiah 1:4). Historically, the change from Hebrew to Egyptian makes no sense. And Egyptian is more primitive and less clear than Hebrew. The Jaredites had a tongue that was derived from that of Adam and Eve and they were extinct except for one man, Coriantumr, when the Nephites arrived in America. Yet Moroni was able to translate their 24 Golden Plates of Ether about 400 AD! And I would ask why these Plates were not already translated? The Jaredite Coriantumr could have translated them.


Mormon 9:33 states that Moroni had to write in Reformed Egyptian and not Hebrew for Hebrew was too large and the Plates were too small. But Egyptian is not an alphabetical script and Hebrew would take up less space. Why were the plates not made bigger? Moroni says we meaning that Mormon was as unintelligent as he was.


There is the problem of the grammatical errors in the original handwritten Book of Mormon which the Church has corrected over the years. One verse has Moroni saying he wrote on a rent. The Church changed it to say rent part of his garment (Alma 46:19). The Church might say that these errors were just colloquial forms of English and it prefers to change them to keep sceptics from scoffing. Correcting God’s mistakes? The Church would say it is not correcting God for it does not matter as long as the main words are intact and the meaning can be worked out. But can you say a book that leaves out words has the meaning intact? You don’t know if it has.


I would add that the Bible is clear that God confounded the communication among humans at the time of the Tower of Babel. The Book of Mormon says the exception was the Jaredites whose language he did not wreck. The Bible does not allow for exceptions. Exceptions destroy the point that the Bible is making - that humankind needs to know it cannot unite to fulfill itself. It needs God. Without God there is chaos. So the Book is hardly reliable regarding languages if the Bible is to be believed.

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