The Mormons, or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, claim that their founder, Joseph Smith, translated The Book of Mormon through divine inspiration using special spiritual spectacles which he claimed were the Urim and Thummim of so-called Old Testament writ. While Mr. Smith was never able to produce either the original untranslated document or the special spiritual spectacles, his claim has been accepted by millions of ardent followers of his religion.
Years ago I lived and worked in Salt Lake City, where I was daily confronted with evangelistic Mormons. These proselytizers had been mightily indoctrinated and trained, so that they were actually able to not listen to or attempt to assimilate contrary opinions or evidence. So frustrated with them was I that I made a decision to never again argue with a Mormon about the validity or credibility of their religion. I have remained true to that decision for over 30 years now.
However, the sole purpose of my Bless Yahowah web site is to provide sincere truth seekers with verifiable evidence which they can then use to make informed, rational decisions concerning the fate of their souls. In that spirit, I present to you the following scans of a letter I received back then from the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of Natural History regarding my inquiry about the historical accuracy of claims made in The Book of Mormon. May you find it helpful.
Letter From the National Museum of Natural History
In a more readable format, here is what that letter says:
Statement Regarding the Book of Mormon
- The Smithsonian Institution has never used the Book of Mormon in any way as a scientific guide. Smithsonian archaeologists see no direct connection between the archaeology of the New World and the subject matter of the book.
- The physical type of the American Indian is basically Mongoloid, being most closely related to that of the peoples of eastern, central, and northeastern Asia. Archaeological evidence indicates that the ancestors of the present Indians came into the New World -- probably over a land bridge known to have existed in the Bering Strait region during the last Ice Age -- in a continuing series of small migrations beginning from about 25,000 to 30,000 years ago.
- Present evidence indicates that the first people to reach this continent from the East were the Norsemen who briefly visited the northeastern part of North America around A.D. 1000 and then settled in Greenland. There is nothing to show that they reached Mexico or Central America.
- One of the main lines of evidence supporting the scientific finding that contacts with Old World civilizations, if indeed they occurred at all, were of very little significance for the development of American Indian civilizations, is the fact that none of the principal Old World domesticated food plants or animals (except the dog) occurred in the New World in pre-Columbian times. American Indians had no wheat, barley, oats, millet, rice, cattle, pigs, chickens, horses, donkeys, camels before 1492. (Camels and horses were in the Americas, along with the bison, mammoth, and mastodon, but all these animals became extinct around 10,000 B.C. at the time the early big hame [sic] hunters spread across the Americas.)
- Iron, steel, glass, and silk were not used in the New World before 1492 (except for occasional use of unsmelted meteoric iron). Native copper was worked used [sic] in various locations in pre-Columbian times, but true metallurgy was limited to southern Mexico and the Andean region, where its occurrence in late prehistoric times involved gold, silver, copper, and their alloys, but not iron.
- There is a possibility that the spread of cultural traits across the Pacific to Mesoamerica and the northwestern coast of South America began several hundred years before the Christian era. However, any such inter-hemispheric contacts appear to have been the results of accidental voyages originating in eastern and southern Asia. It is by no means certain that even such contacts occurred; certainly there were no contacts with the ancient Egyptians, Hebrews, or other peoples of Western Asia and the Near East.
- No reputable Egyptologist or other specialist on Old World archaeology, and no expert on New World prehistory, has discovered or confirmed any relationship between archaeological remains in Mexico and archaeological remains in Egypt.
- Reports of findings of ancient Egyptian, Hebrew, and other Old World writings in the New World in pre-Columbian contexts have frequently appeared in newspapers, magazines, and sensational books. None of these claims has stood up to examination by reputable scholars. No inscriptions using Old World forms of writing have been shown to have occurred in any part of the Americas before 1492 except for a few Norse rune stones which have been found in Greenland.
- There are copies of the Book of Mormon in the library of the National Museum, of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution.
SIL - 76 Rev. May 1980
Need more? From the Book of Mormon, this is Alma 7:10. Alma is preaching to "the church" that is in Gideon (see Alma 6:8). The year is said to be 83 BCE and Alma is revealing where "Jesus" will be born.
"And behold, he shall be born of Mary, at Jerusalem which is the land of our forefathers, she being a virgin, a precious and chosen vessel, who shall be overshadowed and conceive by the power of the Holy Ghost, and bring forth a son, yea, even the Son of God."
We know without doubt that Yahowsha was born in Bethlehem of Yahud, not in Yarushalayim. Mormons will try to say that Alma was referring to the county or district of Jerusalem, but that dog won't hunt. There was no district or county of Jerusalem. Mormons will explain that Alma spoke of Jerusalem being "the land of our forefathers" and therefore was not referring to the city itself. That soiled garment won't wash either, because Yarushalayim is a city and not a land. So we are left with one of God's spokesmen preaching to a church before churches were even concocted by the false apostle Sha'ul, lying to their faces in the name of "God". And we are to accept that this is divinely inspired writ?
If Joseph Smith claims that his Book of Mormon was inspired by God, and he does, and if the information contained in the Book of Mormon can be undeniably proven to be inaccurate, and it can, then one has to conclude that Smith was a liar and that his Book of Mormon is a work of fiction. That being the case, and it most assuredly is, to place one's soul at the disposal of an organization which promotes the Book of Mormon is stupid and suicidal. Why would any rational person choose to remain affiliated with a religion that has been thoroughly discredited as being false and unreliable?
= יהוה = ee-ah-oh-ah = Yahowah /'iɑ∙o∙wɑ /
Song / Mizmor / Psalm 19:7
Yahowah's Towrah is complete and entirely perfect, returning and restoring the soul. Yahowah's testimony is trustworthy and reliable, making understanding and obtaining wisdom simple for the open-minded and receptive.
Yahowah's () Towrah (torah – teaching, guidance, direction, and instruction) is complete and entirely perfect (tamym – without defect, lacking nothing, correct, genuine, right, helpful, beneficial, and true), returning and restoring (suwb – transforming) the soul (nepesh – consciousness). Yahowah's testimony ('eduwth – restoring and eternal witness) is trustworthy and reliable ('aman – verifiable, confirming, supportive, and establishing), making understanding and obtaining wisdom (hakam – educating and enlightening oneself to the point of comprehension) simple for the open-minded and receptive (pethy – easy for those who are receptive).