The Prophet Joseph Smith -by Alvin Gittins
In my just previous post in this blog, I told you of someone I called, "a so-called, scholar." I called him such because I considered it quite unscholarly for him to say that "every time I read from the Book of Mormon I see evidence in its pages of the rough frontier nature of Joseph Smith." Of course in saying that, he was implying that basically uneducated Joseph Smith wrote the Book of Mormon, by himself, out of his own very limited knowledge instead of translating it from an ancient record as he actually had done.
I also told you last week how this same man went on to describe this Book of Books as "flawed literature." I suggested then that he must not be a reader of the Book of Mormon because the Book of Mormon is not flawed literature. Instead it is filled with great profundities. I gave you two examples in my just previous post and now I give you one more:
This is something I learned in the Gospel Doctrine Sunday School class in my LDS ward last week: Our teacher had us read verse 16 of Chapter 12 of II Nephi of the Book of Mormon.
In this scripture, a Book of Mormon prophet is quoting from the version of the Book of Isaiah, Chapter 2 contained in a large collection of scriptures which they had brought with them from Jerusalem.
Next, our teacher had us look at a footnote at the bottom of that Book of Mormon page: It says: "The Greek (Septuagint) has "ships of the sea." The Hebrew has "ships of Tarshis." The Book of Mormon has both, showing that the brass plates had lost neither phrase."
Let me first explain what is meant by " The brass plates." As explained in the Book of Mormon, after the prophet Lehi and his entire family who lived in Jerusalem in about 600 BC had left their home there and by the Lord's instructions, had taken their tents and provisions and had begun a long and difficult journey which would eventually lead them to their "promised land" which turned out to be somewhere in Central America, the Lord, through revelation, gave Lehi further instructions. He was told to send his four sons back to Jerusalem to obtain what was their equivalent of the older portion of our Old Testament so that during their long and arduous journey, and when they reached their "promised land," they would have the holy word of God to guide them in raising their children in truth and righteousness. The Book of Isaiah was one of the books contained in the Brass Plates. It, of course, is in the more more recent versions of the Bible too.
It is well known among Bible scholars that in various subsequent translations of the scriptures, through errors made by transcribers, etc. the oldest versions of them are held to be the most correct versions. That makes sense doesn't it? In the footnote our Sunday School teacher had us read, we have evidence of this very thing. The oldest version (from Lehi's Brass Plates) is the more correct version, each of the two newer versions listed above having one phrase missing.
"And upon all the ships of the sea, and upon all the ships of Tarshish, and upon all pleasant pictures."
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