long ago ideas

“When we are tired, we are attacked by ideas we conquered long ago." - Friedrich Nietzsche Long ago, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery conquered false claims that the Book of Mormon was fiction or that it came through a stone in a hat. But these old claims have resurfaced in recent years. To conquer them again, we have to return to what Joseph and Oliver taught.

Friday, March 17, 2023

CWIC Media interview, part 2

The second part of the interview is available now. In this one we discussed the question, "Did Joseph Smith Really Use A Seer Stone?"


This is a timely interview because, although we didn't discuss it in this interview, our book about the translation is being formally released soon. My co-author and I will be doing interviews about the book and its contents, and the usual critics will do their thing.

Readers of this blog know that I believe what Joseph and Oliver said, not only about Cumorah, but also about the translation of the plates with the Urim and Thummim that came with the plates. 

Others disagree.

Which is fine with me. 

I've said repeatedly that I'm happy for people to believe whatever they want. I encourage people to make informed decisions, but if they don't want to, that's also fine with me. 

Most people just want to confirm their biases. That's why Fox News and CNN/MSNBC succeed in creating silos of increasingly dogmatic partisans.

That's also why Dan Peterson and John Dehlin (who completely agree about SITH) have their loyal followers who resist alternative interpretations of historical evidence.  

In fact, many if not all of those who disbelieve what Oliver wrote about Cumorah--that it is a fact that the final battles took place in western New York--also disbelieve what Oliver and Joseph said about the translation.

That's how we ended up with both M2C and SITH (the Mesoamerican/two-Cumorahs theory and the stone-in-the-hat theory, respectively).


Someone sent me a video from a critic, the Backyard Professor, who released a video yesterday about the translation. It's titled "Backyard Professor Responds to Propaganda Video of Elder David A Bednar on Priesthood Restored."

In his video, he quotes the usual suspects, the SITH advocates including David Whitmer, Brant Gardner, Mike MacKay, Dan Peterson, and Royal Skousen. He could just as easily have read from the Gospel Topics Essay or Mormonism Unvailed--or FAIRLDS, Book of Mormon Central, the Interpreter, etc.  

What none of these sources quote is what Joseph and Oliver said, because they specifically excluded the seer stone from the translation narrative. 

But since these scholars reject what Joseph and Oliver taught about Cumorah, it makes sense that they would also reject what Joseph and Oliver said about the translation. 

Here's the place in the Backyard Professor's video in which he agrees with John Dehlin that FAIRMormon (now FAIRLDS) is better at causing people to have doubts than even he is! 

Thursday, March 16, 2023

CWIC media interview, part 1

The other day I spent some time with Greg Matsen at CWIC Media. He's an awesome, well-informed, thoughtful host who covers a range of topics. If you haven't subscribed to his show, you should.

Here's the link to the first part of our interview:


We discussed Cumorah, LDS scholarship, and related topics. Greg explains that he has no horse in this race. He just wants to see more open and respectful dialogue on these issues, which is exactly what I want to see.

I'd like everyone, Latter-day Saint or not, to make fully informed decisions on these issues, based on facts and not obscured by M2C/SITH gatekeepers or the critical gatekeepers who also prevent their readers/viewers from having all the facts.

Keep up the good work, Greg!

BTW, if you look closely, you'll see that my screen says Beverly Neville. It's not a pseudonym. I was using my wife's office and forgot to change the name! 

My bad...


The show notes include relevant links.

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Resources for answering questions

I frequently hear from readers and viewers who have specific questions about Church history, Book of Mormon historicity, etc. Often they seek a way to explain the issues to their family, friends, associates, and social media contacts.

In most cases, I direct them to the materials on my lettervii.com website. For readers of this blog who find it on moronisamerica, amazon, or another redirected site, you may not know about the Pages on the lettervii.com site.

For example, here's a page about the origins and rational of M2C.

Here is a list of all resources currently in the Pages section of that blog. I add to them as people ask specific questions not already covered in the Pages.

Wednesday, March 8, 2023

The citation cartels and unapproved opinions

It's no secret why the M2C/SITH citation cartels* don't want people to read, or even know about, what Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery actually taught. That's why they react so strongly when people discover and read Letter VII in the Joseph Smith Papers, the complete Wentworth letter from the Times and Seasons, and the rest of the material in the BYU packet for the first time.

The last thing these cartels want is people making informed decisions. Instead, they filter and manipulate information so their readers and followers will arrive at the conclusions that have been approved by the M2C/SITH scholars.

For that matter, the critical cartels** do the same thing. They just censor different information so their readers and viewers can't make informed decisions. Instead, they filter information so their readers and followers will arrive at the conclusions that have been approved by the leading critics.

That's why on this blog we discuss everything.

We trust people to make good decisions when they make fully informed decisions. After all, "good inspiration is based upon good information."


Which reminds us of something else in the news...


Democrats Warn That Anyone Watching Unedited Jan 6 Footage Could Arrive At Unapproved Conclusion

U.S.·Mar 8, 2023 · BabylonBee.com

U.S. — Democrat leaders have issued a dire warning to Americans, saying that anyone who watches unedited clips of the footage from January 6 runs the risk of arriving at a conclusion that hasn't been approved by Democrat leaders.

"This is a very dangerous situation," said Democrat Senator Chuck Schumer. "We work hard every day to make sure Americans all have all the correct opinions. With thousands of hours of footage being given to the American public with no filter, we're in grave danger of some people not agreeing with us, or worse — not giving us politicians more and more unchecked power. This is an existential threat to democracy."

Mitch McConnell, another Democrat Senator, agreed. "I'm terrified right now," he said. "What if everyone starts thinking we're lying frauds? I'm not saying we are, but it would be terrible if people came to such a scary — and unapproved — conclusion."

Experts also weighed in, warning that if unapproved opinions are allowed to spread, it may lead to unapproved leaders being elected for unapproved reasons. "As experts, we wouldn't approve of this," said one expert.

At publishing time, Democrats released findings from the intelligence community stating the Jan 6 tapes were unapproved Russian disinformation.


*The Interpreter, Book of Mormon Central, Meridian Magazine, BYU Studies under Jack Welch, FAIRLDS, the old FARMS.

** CES Letter, Mormon Stories, etc.

Monday, February 27, 2023

Bilingual deception: BMC misinforms and misleads Latter-day Saints in both English and Spanish

This post will be in both English and Spanish

Este post estará en inglés y español

Para obtener más información solo en español, consulte



We’ve previously discussed the way Book of Mormon Central intentionally misleads its donors, readers, and followers by claiming, in English, to follow the Church’s policy of neutrality regarding Book of Mormon geography issues, while using its Spanish website to directly and specifically promote its Mesoamerican/two-Cumorahs (M2C) ideology.

Recently Book of Mormon Central published an article titled ¿EN DÓNDE ESTÁ CUMORAH? It’s an abbreviated rehash of the M2C arguments. It follows the standard tactic of M2C advocates. They assume M2C and ignore contrary evidence to justify their rejection of the teachings of the prophets about the New York Cumorah.


Anteriormente hemos discutido la forma en que Central del Libro de Mormón engaña intencionalmente a sus donantes, lectores y seguidores al afirmar, en inglés, seguir la política de neutralidad de la Iglesia con respecto a los problemas geográficos del Libro de Mormón, mientras usa su sitio web en español para promover directa y específicamente su ideología mesoamericana / dos Cumorah (M2C).

Recientemente Central del Libro de Mormón publicó un artículo titulado ¿EN DÓNDE ESTÁ CUMORAH? Es un repaso abreviado de los argumentos M2C. Sigue la táctica común de los defensores de M2C. Asumen M2C e ignoran la evidencia contraria para justificar su rechazo de las enseñanzas de los profetas sobre el Cumorah de Nueva York.



This article, published in the Spanish language section of Book of Mormon Central, is a good example of the problem faced by Spanish-speaking Latter-day Saints.

They don’t have all the facts, so they cannot make informed decisions. And M2C advocates adamantly refuse to provide the facts in Spanish, just as they do in English.

The difference: English readers can access and understand the Joseph Smith Papers and other historical references, but Spanish readers cannot. This leaves Spanish readers at the mercy of the proponents of M2C and SITH for their information.


Este artículo, publicado en la sección en español de Central del Libro de Mormón, es un buen ejemplo del problema que enfrentan los Santos de los Últimos Días de habla hispana.

No tienen todos los hechos, por lo que no pueden tomar decisiones informadas. Y los defensores de M2C se niegan a proporcionar los hechos en español, tal como lo hacen en inglés.

La diferencia: los lectores en inglés pueden acceder y entender los Documentos de José Smith y otras referencias históricas, pero los lectores en español no pueden. Esto deja a los lectores españoles a merced de los defensores de M2C y SITH para su información.


In this case, the author not only doesn’t cite Oliver Cowdery’s statements about Cumorah, he doesn’t even paraphrase (let alone quote) them and doesn’t seem to know much about them.

Whether intentionally or not, the author misleads his readers by

(i) omitting relevant, authoritative sources that contradict his theory, and

(ii) presenting so-called “must have” characteristics for Cumorah that are merely his own circular reasoning; i.e., he assumes a Mesoamerican setting, so he claims Cumorah must have Mesoamerican characteristics.

In the table below, the first column is the original message in Spanish. The second column is the English translation. My notes in both languages appear in red throughout the text.


En este caso, el autor no solo falta de citar las declaraciones de Oliver Cowdery sobre Cumorah, ni siquiera las parafrasea (y mucho menos cita) y no parece saber mucho sobre ellas.

Ya sea intencionalmente o no, el autor engaña a sus lectores al

(i) omitir fuentes relevantes y autorizadas que contradigan su teoría, y

(ii) presentar las características "imprescindibles" para Cumorah que son simplemente su propio razonamiento circular; es decir, asume un entorno mesoamericano, por lo que afirma que Cumorah debe tener características mesoamericanas.

En la siguiente tabla, la primera columna es el mensaje original en español. La segunda columna es la traducción al inglés. Mis notas en ambos idiomas aparecen en rojo en todo el texto.


To see the original article with commentary, along with the side-by-side English translation with commentary, go to this link:

Para ver el artículo original con comentarios, junto con la traducción al inglés en paralelo con comentarios, vaya a este enlace:


Algunas de las referencias ignoradas por el autor:

Some of the references ignored by the author:

1. 1823. Moroni le dijo a José que las planchas estaban en el "cerro de Cumorah".

1. 1823. Moroni told Joseph the plates were in the “hill of Cumorah”.

"el registro está en una colina lateral en la colina de Cumorah a 3 millas de este lugar, retire la hierba y el musgo y encontrará una gran piedra plana. Que hace palanca y encontrará el registro debajo de ella sobre 4 pilares de cemento, luego el ángel lo dejó"

“the record is on a side hill on the Hill of Cumorah 3 miles from this place remove the Grass and moss and you will find a large flat stone pry that up and you will find the record under it laying on 4 pillars of cement— then the angel left him”





2. 1827. José se refirió a la colina como Cumorah antes de recibir las planchas

2. 1827. Joseph referred to the hill as Cumorah before he got the plates

dijo José: "Era el ángel del Señor: al pasar por el monte de Cumorah, donde están las planchas, el ángel del Señor me encontró y me dijo que no me había ocupado lo suficiente en la obra del Señor; que había llegado el momento de que el registro saliera a la luz"

said Joseph, “it was the angel of the Lord— as I passed by the hill of Cumorah, where the plates are, the angel of the Lord met me and said, that I had not been engaged enough in the work of the Lord; that the time had come for the record to <be> brought forth”





3. 1830. Moroni llamó al cerro "Cumorah" en la antigüedad

3. 1830. Moroni called the hill “Cumorah” anciently

Oliver Cowdery (citado por Parley P. Pratt) durante la misión a los lamanitas (D. y C. 28, 30 y 32).

Oliver Cowdery (quoted by Parley P. Pratt) during the mission to the Lamanites (D&C 28, 30 and 32).

"Este Libro, que contenía estas cosas, fue escondido en la tierra por Moroni, en una colina llamada por él, Cumorah, cuya colina está ahora en el Estado de Nueva York, cerca de la aldea de Palmyra, en el condado de Ontario.

"This Book, which contained these things, was hid in the earth by Moroni, in a hill called by him, Cumorah, which hill is now in the State of New York, near the village of Palmyra, in Ontario County.

Autobiografía de Parley P. Pratt, página 58 del capítulo VIII.

Autobiography of Parley P. Pratt, page 58 of Chapter VIII. 







4. Moroni dice que el registro fue "escrito y depositado" no lejos de la casa de José

4. Moroni says the record was “written and deposited” not far from Joseph’s home

Él [Moroni] luego procedió y dio un relato general de las promesas hechas a los padres, y también dio una historia de los aborígenes de este país, y dijo que eran descendientes literales de Abraham. Él los representó como un pueblo iluminado e inteligente, que poseía un conocimiento correcto del Evangelio y del plan de restauración y redención. Dijo que esta historia fue escrita y depositada no lejos de ese lugar, y que era privilegio de nuestro hermano, si era obediente a los mandamientos del Señor, obtener y traducir la misma por medio del Urim y Tumim, que fueron depositados para ese propósito con el registro.

He [Moroni] then proceeded and gave a general account of the promises made to the fathers, and also gave a history of the aborigenes of this country, and said they were literal descendants of Abraham. He represented them as once being an enlightned and intelligent people, possessing a correct knowledge of the gospel, and the plan of restoration and redemption. He said this history was written and deposited not far from that place, and that it was our brother’s privilege, if obedient to the commandments of the Lord, to obtain and translate the same by the means of the Urim and Thummim, which were deposited for that purpose with the record.





5. Es un hecho que la colina en Nueva York es la Cumorah de Mormón 6:6

5. It is a fact that the hill in New York is the Cumorah of Mormon 6:6

Aproximadamente a una milla al oeste se eleva otra cresta de menor altura, que corre paralela a la anterior, dejando un hermoso valle entre ellas. El suelo es de primera calidad para el país, y bajo un estado de cultivo, lo que da una perspectiva a la vez imponente, cuando uno reflexiona sobre el hecho, que aquí, entre estas colinas, todo el poder y la fuerza nacional tanto de los jareditas como de los nefitas fueron destruidos. Al pasar a las páginas 529 y 530 del libro de Mormón120, leerá el relato de Mormón de la última gran lucha de su pueblo, cuando estaban acampados alrededor de esta colina Cumorah.

At about one mile west rises another ridge of less height, running parallel with the former, leaving a beautiful vale between. The soil is of the first quality for the country, and under a state of cultivation, which gives a prospect at once imposing, when one reflects on the fact, that here, between these hills, the entire power and national strength of both the Jaredites and Nephites were destroyed.

By turning to the 529th and 530th pages of the book of Mormon120 you will read Mormon’s account of the last great struggle of his people, as they were encamped round this hill Cumorah.

[Mormón], por nombramiento divino, abrevió de esos registros, en su propio estilo y lenguaje, un breve relato de los artículos más importantes y prominentes, desde los días de Lehi hasta su propio tiempo, después de lo cual depositó, como él dice, en la página 529, todos los registros en esta misma colina, Cumorah y después dio su pequeño registro a su hijo Moroni, quien, como se desprende del mismo, terminó, después de presenciar la extinción de su pueblo como nación.... Esta colina, por los jareditas, se llamaba Ramá: junto a ella, o alrededor de ella, el famoso ejército de Coriántumr levantaba sus tiendas.

[Mormon], by divine appointment, abridged from those records, in his own style and language, a short account of the more important and prominent items, from the days of Lehi to his own time, after which he deposited, as he says, on the 529th page, all the records in this same hill, Cumorah and after gave his small record to his son Moroni, who, as appears from the same, finished, after witnessing the extinction of his people as a nation. …

This hill, by the Jaredites, was called Ramah: by it, or around it pitched the famous army of Coriantumr their tents.





6. La primera vez que David Whitmer escuchó la palabra "Cumorah" fue del mensajero divino que tenía las planchas abreviadas de Harmony, Pensilvania.

6. The first time David Whitmer heard the word “Cumorah” was from the divine messenger who had the abridged plates from Harmony, Pennsylvania.

"Cuando regresaba a Fayette con Joseph y Oliver todos nosotros montados en el vagón, Oliver y yo en un antiguo asiento de resorte de madera y Joseph detrás de nosotros, mientras viajamos en un lugar abierto y claro, un anciano muy amable y de aspecto agradable apareció de repente al lado de nuestro carro que nos saludó con, "Buenos días, hace mucho calor", al mismo tiempo que se limpiaba la cara o la frente con la mano. Le devolvimos el saludo, y por una señal de José lo invité a montar si iba por nuestro camino. Pero él dijo muy agradablemente: "No, voy a Cumorah". Este nombre era algo nuevo para mí, no sabía lo que quería decir Cumorah. Todos lo miramos a él y al otro, y mientras miraba a mi alrededor inquisitivamente a José, el anciano desapareció instantáneamente, de modo que no lo volví a ver". INFORME DE LOS ÉLDERES ORSON PRATT Y JOSEPH F. SMITH al presidente John Taylor y al Consejo de los Doce.

"When I was returning to Fayette with Joseph and Oliver all of us riding in the wagon, Oliver and I on an old fashioned wooden spring seat and Joseph behind us, while traveling along in a clear open place, a very pleasant, nice-looking old man suddenly appeared by the side of our wagon who saluted us with, “good morning, it is very warm,” at the same time wiping his face or forehead with his hand. We returned the salutation, and by a sign from Joseph I invited him to ride if he was going our way. But he said very pleasantly, “No, I am going to Cumorah.’ This name was something new to me, I did not know what Cumorah meant. We all gazed at him and at each other, and as I looked round enquiringly of Joseph the old man instantly disappeared, so that I did not see him again."


REPORT OF ELDERS ORSON PRATT AND JOSEPH F. SMITH to President John Taylor and Council of the Twelve.










Friday, February 24, 2023

Ramah, Cumorah, and military strongholds

We can gain insights about Cumorah by considering the name Ramah. 

The term corroborates what Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery always taught about Cumorah in New York; i.e., that it was the site of military battles and was, as the text says, a "hill" and not a mountain.

This was certainly not some mountain somewhere in southern Mexico.

This explains why Mormon moved the records from the hill Shim to the hill Cumorah. He knew the Jaredites had a military stronghold there that he could use to fight the Lamanites and conceal the repository of Nephite records as he continued the abridgment. 

This also explains why Moroni told Joseph Smith that the abridgment was "written and deposited" not far from his home near Palmyra, NY. As Orson Pratt explained, there were two departments in the hill: one for the repository of records, and one for the stone box built by Moroni to contain the abridged record that Joseph would translate in Harmony, Pennsylvania.


Ramah was the name used in Ether for the Hill Cumorah.

11 And it came to pass that the army of Coriantumr did pitch their tents by the hill Ramah; and it was that same hill where my father Mormon did hide up the records unto the Lord, which were sacred.
(Ether 15:11)

The onomasticon gives the following explanation for Ramah, including the possibility it is a Jaredite word or a Jaredite word translated into Nephite or otherwise related to a Semitic language:


Until possible language affinities for JAREDITE names can be determined, all suggestions for etymologies of JAREDITE names must remain more speculative than substantive. With that caveat, the onomasticon does offer etymologies for some JAREDITE names, especially if it is possible that some JAREDITE names were translated into NEPHITE, or were otherwise related to one or more Semitic languages.

RAMAH is given in Ether 15:11 as the name of the hill where CORIANTUMR encamped before his final battle as well as the name of the place where MORMON hid the sacred records. Given the close association of the location with both events, the name RAMAH may well be of NEPHITE, rather than JAREDITE, origin, and may be derived from the HEBREW rāmāh, "elevation, height;" cf. HALOTRAMAH was also called CUMORAH by the NEPHITES (Mormon 6:6).

Another possibility is that Joseph transliterated or translated the term on the plates (whether it was Jaredite or Nephite) as Ramah because the Bible uses the term for military strongholds.

While the onomasticon suggests the Hebrew Raman means "elevation, height," Biblical commentaries explain it has a military connection.

Ramah is the name of several different cities in the Bible.... Ramah means “height” or “high” and is often applied to military strongholds. ...

Ramah of Benjamin appears again during the divided monarchy and the rival kingdoms of Israel and Judah. King Baasha of Israel built a fortress at Ramah in Benjamin to stop people from entering or leaving Judah. 

Ramah means "high, lofty place" or "the height" in Hebrew. Because high places are easily defended and make good lookouts, Ramah also means "military stronghold or watchtower." There are four towns in the Bible with this name. 

When the tribes of Israel received their inheritance, the tribe of Benjamin received a town called Ramah that was five miles north of Jerusalem on the edge of their territory along the border with Ephraim (Joshua 18:25). The tribe of Simeon received a town called Ramah in the south known as Ramah of the Negev (Joshua 19:8). Both Asher and Naphtali also received a town named Ramah, although it is possible those Ramahs may have been the same town on the border the two tribes shared (Joshua 19:29, 36). It is the Ramah of Benjamin in the hill country of Ephraim that plays a significant role in Scripture. ....

Being a fortified city on the border, Ramah in Benjamin was also the site of some military battles.

The biblical sites called Ramah are strategically located on hills or borders, which makes sense for a military stronghold. 

Nothing about the term connotes a mountain.

There's more info about all of this, but for purposes of this post, it's useful to think of Ramah as a military stronghold on a high place.

Or, as Oliver Cowdery described it, 

I think I am justified in saying that this is the highest hill for some distance round, and I am certain that its appearance, as it rises so suddenly from a plain on the north, must attract the notice of the traveller as he passes by.
At about one mile west rises another ridge of less height, running parallel with the former, leaving a beautiful vale between. The soil is of the first quality for the country, and under a state of cultivation, which gives a prospect at once imposing, when one reflects on the fact, that here, between these hills, the entire power and national strength of both the Jaredites and Nephites were destroyed.


Some additional useful information about Hazael, king of Syria, whose army injured king Joram at Ramah.

28 ¶ And he went with Joram the son of Ahab to the war against Hazael king of Syria in Ramoth-gilead; and the Syrians wounded Joram.
 29 And king Joram went back to be healed in Jezreel of the wounds which the Syrians had given him at Ramah, when he fought against Hazael king of Syria. And Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah went down to see Joram the son of Ahab in Jezreel, because he was sick.
(2 Kings 8:28–29)
HAZAEL hā zĭ’ əl (חֲזָאֵ֛ל, חֲזָהאֵ֗ל; Assyr. haz’ilu). One of the most powerful of the kings of Syria (Aram), ruling from c. 843 b.c. to c. 796 b.c. He reigned contemporaneously with Jehoram (the last few years), Jehu, and Jehoahaz, kings of Israel; and Jehoram, Ahaziah, Athaliah, and Joash, kings of Judah. He is first mentioned in 1 Kings 19:15-17, where Elijah at Mount Horeb was told by God that he would anoint Hazael king over Syria. At this time he was a high officer in the court of Ben-hadad II, king of Syria (2 Kings 8:7-9), for a short time later his sick sovereign sent him to inquire of the prophet Elisha, who was then in Damascus, whether or not he would recover from his illness. To this question Elisha replied that the illness of his master was not fatal, but that he would nevertheless die; and he added that Hazael himself was to become king of Syria and would be the perpetrator of monstrous cruelties against the children of Israel. The day after Hazael reported to the king the results of his interview with Elisha he killed him by smothering him with a wet cloth; and Hazael became king in his stead (8:7-15).

Soon after, Hazael fought against the combined forces of Jehoram and Ahaziah at Ramoth-gilead (8:28, 29; 9:14, 15). He frequently defeated Jehu in battle, devastating all his country E of the Jordan from the Arnon in the S to Bashan in the N (10:32, 33). During the reign of Jehoahaz, Jehu’s successor, he repeatedly encroached upon the territory of Israel, which was kept from complete destruction only by God’s mercy (13:3, 22, 23). Hazael also moved into SW Pal., taking Gath; he compelled the king of Judah to pay a heavy bribe for sparing Jerusalem (12:17, 18; 2 Chron 24:23, 24). It was not until the death of Hazael that Israel was able successfully to check the aggression of Syria under Benhadad III, the son of Hazael (2 Kings 13:24, 25).

Cuneiform inscrs. show that Hazael played a large role in some of the campaigns of Shalmaneser III. In a pavement slab from Calah, Shalmaneser records that in 842 b.c. he joined battle with Hazael. He recorded that the Syrian king was defeated, losing 6,000 warriors, 1,121 chariots, and 470 horsemen, together with his stores, and that although he did not capture Damascus, he overran the Hauran and all the territory back to the Mediterranean Sea. Among his tributary kings he mentioned the name of Jehu son of Omri.

In another inscr. Shalmaneser refers to Hazael as the “son of a nobody,” and mentions the fact that Hazael had “seized the throne.”

Among the spoils taken from Damascus by Assyria, and found by archeologists at Arslan Tash (Hadathah) were an ivory inlay from the side of a bed, with the words engraved on it, “Bar Ama to our Lord Hazael in the year....,” and another ivory tablet, possibly a part of the same bed, showing in relief a god or king in Phoenician-Aramaean style, which some scholars believe is actually a portrait of Hazael himself.

Bibliography E. Kraeling, Aram and Israel (1918); M. F. Unger, Israel and the Aramaeans of Damascus (1957), 75-82, 160-163; I. M. Price, O. R. Sellers, E. L. Carlson, The Monuments and the Old Testament (1958), 239-241, 245, 347-349; D. W. Thomas (ed.), Documents from OT Times (1958), 46-52, 242-250; M. Avi-Yonah, Views of the Biblical World, II (1960), 248, 264, 273.

Thursday, February 23, 2023

Wordcruncher updates

I'm always encouraging my readers to use WordCruncher. If you're not using it, why not?

Not only is it useful for scripture study, but it also has access to a large library. You can add your own material to it as well.

Here's an announcement about the latest changes/additions: