“I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book.”
--Joseph Smith, Introduction to the Book of Mormon
I was going to do another post critiquing the Book of Mormon, specifically the story around the Brass Plates. I have discussed this before, but there are some other aspects of the story and the prophecies contained within the plates which I wanted to address further. That is, until I found a website which did a much better job than I would have. So, instead of doing a full review, I will just use some of the points Richard Packham makes, and encourage you to check out the rest of his post. As you read these exerpts, consider which "man" is to blame for such "faults?" (links added):
Was there only one copy, and only on brass?
If the brass plates were the only copy, then by taking them Lehi would deprive the Jews of the record. (Remember that without these scriptures, a nation will perish - 1 Ne 4:13, 15) If there were other copies, why didn't Lehi try to obtain one of those, instead of getting a copy at the cost of a man's life?Why would the records be engraved on brass plates?
Even the most important records, especially records of any length, were kept on papyrus or parchment rolls in Lehi's time. Why should this one record be different?Why would a prominent man like Laban go out at night drinking without escort? 1 Ne 4:7-10, 19, 22
The fact that he was armed and wearing armor would indicate that it was not entirely safe to be abroad. A prudent man of his wealth and position would have been accompanied by private bodyguards.Why would Laban's clothing not be bloody after being beheaded? 1 Ne 4:19
If it was not a bloodless beheading, Nephi would be wearing Laban's bloody clothes when impersonating him later at his home.Did Nephi have any difficulty putting on Laban's clothes?
Nephi was unusually large in stature (1 Ne 4:31). Unless Laban was the same size, his clothing would not have fit Nephi.How could Nephi have impersonated Laban so as to fool Laban's servants? 1 Ne 4:20-27
This is one of the many "tall tales" in the Book of Mormon.Why would not the discovery of the naked, decapitated body of an important man such as Laban stir up an immediate search for his killer? And for the missing plates and servant?
How could the plates contain whole chapters from Isaiah that had not yet been written?
Lehi obtained the plates about 600 BC, just before the capture of Jerusalem by the Babylonians and the exile of the population to Babylon. Biblical scholars are almost all agreed that the present Book of Isaiah contains some writings by the prophet written pre-Captivity (up to chapter 35 or 39), but that chapters 40 to 66 could not possibly have been written before the Babylonian Captivity, since the situation described in those chapters does not reflect pre-Captivity circumstances. However, the Book of Mormon contains several whole chapters from this so-called Deutero-Isaiah, supposedly copied from the brass plates:
Also, many individual passages from Isaiah's chapters 52 and 55 appear scattered throughout other books in the Book of Mormon.
Isaiah 48 = 1 Nephi 20 Isaiah 49 1 Nephi 21 Isaiah 53 Mosiah 14 Isaiah 54 3 Nephi 22