Fact a Day: September 14th - Ankerberg Theological Research Institute, John Ankerberg Show

Fact a Day: September 14th

The Facts on the Mormon Church (Harvest House, 1991) p. 31

 

Are the Mormon scriptures really the Word of God? If so, why has the Church made significant changes in them; why do they contain demonstrable errors and undeniable contradictions?

 

The Mormon Church claims that the Book of Mormon, The Pearl of Great Price, and Doctrine and Covenants are genuine scriptures inspired by God. But this cannot possibly be true.

[Jerald and Sandra Tanner] have reprinted the original 1830 edition of the Book of Mormon noting in the text significant major changes and over 3,000 minor changes. But even a single minor change is incompatible with its claimed method of translation which was “by the power of God.”* In translating the Book of Mormon, God’s power was apparently limited. For example, the 1830 edition of Mosiah 21:28 refers to King Benjamin, while modern editions read “King Mosiah.” According to the Book of Mormon chronology, Benjamin was no longer king at the time (he was dead; Mosiah 6:3-7; 7:1), so the inspired name was changed to read King Mosiah to cover an obvious error.

Similarly, serious doctrinal errors have been corrected. For example, in 1 Nephi 11:18 the 1830 edition teaches, “The virgin which thou seest, is the mother of God, after the manner of the flesh.” However, since Mary could not literally be the mother of the earth deity “Elohim,” modern editions read “the mother of the Son of God” rather than “the mother of God.”

We have two choices: Either Smith copied errors that were originally on the supposed gold plates, or the Book of Mormon is not “a perfect translation by the power of God” as Mormonism claims. Either way the Book of Mormon cannot be trusted.

*For full documentation, please see The Facts on The Mormon Church.

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