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.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Letter VII continued

This is the photo that we used for the cover of the book. I flew over the area with my drone. The Hill Cumorah is in the upper right of the photo. The light green triangle is where the annual pageant takes place. At the peak, just to the left, is the statue of Moroni. The white building on the left is the Visitors Center.

Yesterday I listed a few of the things covered in the book. Here are some more items of interest it contains.

1. Oliver's letters are the only source for many details about the early events of the Restoration.

2. Oliver's Letter I is excerpted in the Pearl of Great Price.

3. Joseph had his scribes copy Oliver's letters into his personal history.

4. Oliver's Letter VII was re-published several times through 1844.

5. Oliver describes Moroni by saying "the stature of this personage was a little above the common size of men in this age."

6. Oliver says Moroni's "garment was perfectly white, and had the appearance of being without seam."

7. Oliver says Moroni "said this history was written and deposited not far from that place."

Think about that last one. We know the plates were deposited not far from that place (i.e., Joseph's home where Moroni was speaking to him). But if the history was also written "not far from that place," then it was not written in Mesoamerica.

8. On April 3, 1836, just a few months after Oliver published Letter VII and Joseph's scribes copied it into Joseph's personal history, Moses, Elias, Elijah, and the Lord Himself appeared to Joseph and Oliver in the Kirtland temple. "Behold, your sins are forgiven you; you are clean before me; therefore, lift up your heads and rejoice." D&C 110:5.

9. Oliver remained a faithful witness of the Book of Mormon throughout his life.

1 comment:

  1. Jonathan,

    I've been reading your book, "Letter VII," with great interest. I haven't completely read it yet, being a busy man and I read nonfiction books such as this rather slowly, as I like to look up footnotes and google things I never knew before, etc., but I will soon.

    Here's one thing I found interesting on a pro Mesoamerica site which sort of relates to letter VII and the hill Cumorah. It's a quote from "Captain Kirk" on his blog, "Book of Mormon Resources."

    He explained that he [Milton R. Hunter] was very disappointed with the research results coming out of Mesoamerica. The BYU New World Archaeological Foundation had been digging in Chiapas for 20 years at that point, and they had not found much of anything Elder Hunter deemed compelling. His attitude of disenchantment was shared by Thomas Stuart Ferguson, Dee F. Green, and others whose enthusiasm for Book of Mormon archaeology waned as NWAF kept uncovering unspectacular sites. NWAF at that time was excavating primarily in the Grijalva drainage basin, the large blank spot in the middle of Mary Miller's map.

    Gee, maybe they're looking in the wrong spot! Here's the article from "Captain Kirk."