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Posted by: beeblequix ( )
Date: September 11, 2019 03:21PM

I found something in the Book of Mormon that doesn't seem internally consistent.

2 Nephi 29 --
...
12 For behold, I shall speak unto the Jews and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the Nephites and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the other tribes of the house of Israel, which I have led away, and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto all nations of the earth and they shall write it.

13 And it shall come to pass that the Jews shall have the words of the Nephites, and the Nephites shall have the words of the Jews; and the Nephites and the Jews shall have the words of the lost tribes of Israel; and the lost tribes of Israel shall have the words of the Nephites and the Jews.

14 And it shall come to pass that my people, which are of the house of Israel, shall be gathered home unto the lands of their possessions; and my word also shall be gathered in one. And I will show unto them that fight against my word and against my people, who are of the house of Israel, that I am God, and that I covenanted with Abraham that I would remember his seed forever.


This is the chapter where God via Nephi goes blathering about "a bible, a bible, we have a bible, and there can be no more bible." It says that God shall speak to the Jews, they'll write it and that those words will be delivered to the Nephites who will then possess the words of the Jews. It sounds simple until you realize that Joseph killed off the entire Nephite nation at the hands of the Lamanites (who we also can't seem to find). There aren't any Nephites to receive God's words in the Bible from the Jews. It can't be referring to the Brass Plates and previous words because the verbiage indicates future dealings, not past interactions. I expect more consistency out of the most correct book on the planet. Sounds to me that the Mormon God forgot some important plot elements. Am I reading this wrong? Thanks.

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Posted by: RPackham ( )
Date: September 11, 2019 03:35PM

The Mormon explanation would be that what the Nephites wrote is preserved in the Book of Mormon.

A more serious problem with that passage is that the word "Bible" is being used here in the sense that it had in Joseph Smith's day: a collection of sacred writings in a closed canon.

The word "Bible," of course, is not found in the Bible itself. When the original Bible writers wanted to refer to the sacred writings, the Hebrew writers in the Old Testament used the Hebrew word 'k-th-b' "writing(s)." which included all kinds of writings, both secular and sacred. The New Testament writers, writing in Greek, used the word 'graphe,' which also means simply "[something] written" or even "drawn, painted."

Our English word "Bible" is an anglicization of the Greek word 'biblia', which means "books," and is simply the plural of the Greek word 'biblion' meaning "book." This word (in its singular form only) appears about twenty times in the New Testament, referring to a particular sacred book. But it never appears in the plural (except once, and then it refers to pagan writings). The idea of a Christian canon (list of approved books, a "Bible" in the traditional sense) began only in the second century A.D., and the first such "canon" was put together by Marcion about 150 A.D. (who is now considered by Christians to be a heretic).

The King James Version of the Bible uses the word "scriptures" only in the New Testament, where it is very common. ("Scripture" in the singular, appears in the KJV Old Testament, and only once, in Daniel 10:21.)

At the time Lehi supposedly left Jerusalem (600 B.C.) the idea of a closed canon of scripture (a "Bible") had not developed. There was no such thing. If you study the history of the development of the Jewish and Christian canon, you will find that the idea of canonizing certain books (that is, stamping them with the seal of divine authority) did not arise until the Alexandrian Jews, who no longer were fluent in Hebrew, wanted to translate the Hebrew sacred writings into Greek (about 250 B.C.), and thus a decision had to be made as to what books to translate. The result, completed only after several generations, was the Greek Septuagint (Old Testament), the first attempt to create a canon, a "bible." The Jewish canon was not determined completely until the first century A.D.

So the question arises with the word "Bible" in 2 Nephi: what Hebrew (or "Reformed Egyptian") word appeared on the golden plates, to be translated as "Bible"? The Book of Mormon uses the word "scriptures" about 38 times. It is used in the way the New Testament writers use it. "Bible" is a word, and - more important - a concept which did not even exist until several centuries after it was supposedly written by Nephi.

If the Book of Mormon were authentic and historically accurate, one would expect that when God told Nephi that the Gentiles would cry, "A Bible! We have a Bible!" Nephi would have asked, "Excuse me, God, what does 'Bible' mean? It's an idea I'm not familiar with." And God would have given Nephi an explanation, so that Nephite readers of his record would know what was meant: something that would develop only many centuries later.

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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: September 12, 2019 09:22AM

The nephites will have all of the best words.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 12, 2019 01:35PM

Theirs was a culture of genius and, despite the wars, very stable over time.

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