Mormonism seems to be the opposite of the Bible in several ways. The Book of Mormon and the other “Standard Works” are in complete contrast with the Bible’s superb historical reliability. In the face of contradicting evidences, Mormonism’s claim of divine revelation seems less and less plausible. Since they claim the “Standard Works” have a greater explanatory scope than the Bible, they carry the burden of proof to show both the superiority and reliability of the Standard Works. But they completely fail to do that for these reasons:
1. The Book of Mormon states that the Nephites and Lamanites had Jewish beliefs that became Christian when the resurrected Christ appeared to them. However, there is no evidence that the ancient inhabitants in the Americas had either Jewish or Christian beliefs.
1. The gold plates (from which the Book of Mormon was supposedly translated from) is said to be written in “reformed Egyptian”. Almost all scholars of linguistics (except those that are Mormon) call this made-up language pure gibberish. Why? Because there is absolutely no existing evidence of a “Reformed Egyptian” language. On top of this, there isn’t any evidence that the following words used in the Book of Mormon are Egyptian or Semetic: Shazar (1 Nephi 16:13-14), Irreantum (1 Nephi 17:5), Liahona (Alma 37:38), deseret (Ether 2:3), or other words unique to the Book of Mormon.
2. The Book of Nephi and Mosiah asserts that the Hebrew native language was Egyptian from 600-91 B.C and Mormon 9:32 says it was “Reformed Egyptian” by A.D. 400. However, according to well-established history Hebrews spoke Hebrew until the Babylonian captivity in 560-538 B.C.. Under the captivity of the Babylonians, the Hebrews adopted Aramaic while those with religious positions still spoke Hebrew.
1. 1 Nephi 18:25 says that North America had cows, oxen, donkeys, horses, and goats “for the use of man” in 600 B.C. However, these animals weren’t present in North America until the Europeans brought them almost a thousand years later.
New World Artifact Problem:
“And they said unto him: Behold, he is feeding thy horses. Now the king had commanded his servants, previous to the time of the watering of their flocks, that they should prepare his horses and chariots, and conduct him forth to the land of Nephi; for there had been a great feast appointed at the land of Nephi, by the father of Lamoni, who was king over all the land.” Alma 18:9
1. Alma 18:9-10, 12 , Alma 20:6, and 3 Nephi 3:22 mention the use of chariots in the Americas. Firstly, there is no record of any use of wheeled modes of transportation. Secondly, the roads built by the natives were crude, steep, and rough – conditions unsuitable for the use of chariots.
“And I did teach my people to build buildings, and to work in all manner of wood, and of iron, and of copper, and of brass, and of steel, and of gold, and of silver, and of precious ores, which were in great abundance.” 2 Nephi 5:15
2. The use of steel and iron are mentioned several times in the Book of Mormon. The fact is, there is absolutely no evidence found in the Americas of iron being smelted or being hardened into steel. As Kevin J. Vaughn, a Purdue assistant professor of anthropology, says “Even though ancient Andean people smelted some metals, such as copper, they never smelted iron like they did in the Old World,” and goes on to say that “metals were used for a variety of tools in the Old World, such as weapons, while in the Americas, metals were used as prestige goods for the wealthy elite.”
3. Mormon 6:10-15 claims that hundreds of thousands of people were killed near the hill Cumorah during a major battle. It says that “their flesh, and bones, and blood lay upon the face of the earth, being left by the hands of those who slew them to molder upon the land, and to crumble and to return to their mother earth” (Mormon 6:15). In other words, their bodies were left there, unburied.
To give you the magnitude of death this supposed battle brought upon, let’s look at another major battle. During the Battle of Gettysburg, 6,000 men died and about 55,000 were wounded. The people sent to clear the dead described the field as having “streams of blood”. If Gettysburg had streams of blood, then the battle at Cumorah was an ocean of blood. I mean seriously, it’s really hard to imagine 100,000+ dead bodies. But, even with all the dead, no artifacts have ever been found near the battlefield. Metallic artifacts from weapons and armor would have all been easily found, but nothing has ever been discovered at hill Cumorah.
Changes To “The Most Correct” Book:
Joseph Smith said “that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book,” (History of the Church, vol. 4, p. 461). Why? Because it was allegedly translated through the power of God himself. Here is a brief list of revisions to the “most correct book on earth”:
|1830 Edition of the Book of Mormon||1981 Edition of the Book of Mormon|
|1 Nephi 11:18||“And he said unto me, Behold, the virgin which thou seest, is the mother of [. . . . ] God, after the manner of the flesh||“And he said unto me: Behold, the virgin whom thou seest is the mother of the Son of God, after the manner of the flesh.”|
|1 Nephi 11:21||“And the angel said unto me, behold the Lamb of God, yea, even the [. . . . ] Eternal Father!…”||“And the angel said unto me: Behold the Lamb of God, yea, even the Son of the Eternal Father!…”|
|1 Nephi 11:32||“…And I looked and beheld the Lamb of God, that he was taken by the people; yea, [. . . . ] the Everlasting God, was judged of the world…”||“…And I looked and beheld the Lamb of God, that he was taken by the people; yea, the Son of the everlasting God was judged of the world…”|
|1 Nephi 13:40||“…and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God is [. . . . ] the Eternal Father and the Savior of the world…”||“…and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people that the Lamb of God is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the World…”|
|1 Nephi 19:20||“…for had not the Lord been merciful, to shew unto me concerning them, even as he had prophets of old; [. . . . ] for he surely…”||“…for had not the Lord been merciful, to show unto me concerning them, even as he had prophets of old, I should have perished also.”|
|1 Nephi 20:1
changed in 1964 ed.
|“Hearken and hear this, O house of Jacob, which are called by the name of Israel, and are come forth out of the waters of Judah,[. . . . ] which swear…”||“Hearken and hear this, O house of Jacob, who are called by the name of Israel, and are come forth out of the waters of Judah, or out of the waters of baptism, who swear…”|
changed in 1964 ed.
|“…king Benjamin had a gift from God, whereby he could interpret such engravings;…”||“…king Mosiah had a gift from God, whereby he could interpret such engravings;…”|
|Alma 46:40||“…because of the excellent qualities of the many plants and roots which God had prepared, to remove the cause of diseases which was subsequent to man by the nature of the climate.”||“…because of the excellent qualities of the many plants and roots which God had prepared to removed the cause of diseases, to which men were subject by the nature of the climate.”|
|3 Nephi 3:23||“And the land which was appointed was the land of Zarahemla, and the land which was between the land of Zarahemla and the land Bountiful.”||“And the land which was appointed was the land of Zarahemla [ . . . .] and the land Bountiful…”|
|3 Nephi 10:4||“O ye people of these great cities which have fallen which are a descendant of Jacob; yea which are of the house of Israel; O ye people of the house of Israel, how oft have I gathered you…”||“O ye people of these great cities which have fallen, who are descendants of Jacob, yea, who are of the house of Israel, [. . . . ] how oft have I gathered you…”|
|3 Nephi 16:10||“and thus commandeth the Father that I should say unto you at that day, When the Gentiles shall sin against my Gospel, and shall subject the fulness of my Gospel, and shall be lifted up…”||“And thus commandeth the Father that I should say unto you: At that day when the Gentiles shall sin against my gospel,[. . . . ] and shall be lifted up…”|
|3 Nephi 22:4||“…for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, [. . . . ] and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.”||“…for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.”|
|Ether 9:2||“…nevertheless, the Lord was merciful unto Omer, and also to his sons and to his daughters, which were not, or which did not seek his destruction.”||“Nevertheless, the Lord was merciful unto Omer, and also to his sons, and to his daughters [. . . . ] who did not seek his destruction.”|
The list doesn’t end there. The Doctrine and Covenants (a divine revelation from God published in 1833 and re-published in 1835) has been changed numerous times throughout the years:
Section 6: gained 101 words and was then placed in a totally different section.
Section 19: gained 64 words.
Section 20: received 388 words.
Section 28: (Originally a mere 93 words) gained 649 words.
649 words! Jeez! I’m pretty sure they weren’t just spell-checking there.
The Best Evidence Against Mormonism:
The Book of Abraham is allegedly Joseph Smith’s translation of an Egyptian papyri Joseph obtained through purchasing an Egyptian mummy and is probably the best evidence against Mormonism. The actual papyri (thought to be destroyed in a Chicago fire) was discovered in the archives of the New York City’s Metropolitan Museum. After examining the text, Egyptologists and many other scholars confirmed that these supposed “revelations” were actually nothing but common Egyptian burial texts belonging to the Book of Breathings and bears absolutely no resemblance to the Book of Abraham. If Joseph Smith was terribly wrong in his translation of the Book of Abraham, it follows that he cannot be trusted to have produced an accurate translation of the Book of Mormon, which he himself claimed was in the same language.
Baer (an Egyptologist that translated the book) provided a comparison of his translation with Joseph Smith’s. It is quite easy to see that there is not the slightest resemblance between the two. For example:
Baer’s translation: “the”
Smith’s translation: “… now this priest had offered upon this altar three virgins at one time who were the daughters of Onitah, one of the royal descent directly from the loins of Ham, these virgins were offered up because of their virtue they would not bow down to worship gods of wood or stone, therefore they were killed upon this altar”