Thursday, July 19, 2012

Brandley’s Map – Another Useless Shot in the Dark, Part I

With so much information possible now, including electronic Book of Mormon scripture available to anyone with a computer, one would think that any ideas stated in books and websites about the location, shape, distances, etc., of the Land of Promise would be more accurate. However, with a simple look at Theodore Brandley’s map of his location for the Book of Mormon sites, it is almost embarrassing to consider such a concept.
First of all, Mormon, with his interjectional writings in Alma, makes it quite clear where certain cities and locations are relative to one another. So much so, it is uncontestable as to the location of these sites along a north-south plane in the Land of Promise. Take, for example, this is clearly stated location of Zarahemla and Bountiful in Alma 22:27-34):
The Land of Promise, according to Mormon, ran mostly north to south, or northward from the Land of Nephi to the Narrow Neck, then beyond to the Land of Desolation
1. “the king sent a proclamation throughout all the land, amongst all his people who were in all his land, who were in all the regions round about, which was bordering even to the sea, on the east and on the west”  (vs 27).
Obviously, the Lamanite king was in the Land of Nephi, which ran from the West Sea to the East Sea;
2. “and which was divided from the land of Zarahemla by a narrow strip of wilderness, which ran from the sea east even to the sea west” (vs 27)
This Land of Nephi was divided from the Land of Zarahemla by a narrow strip of wilderness that ran from the West Sea to the East Sea;
3. “the wilderness which was on the north by the land of Zarahemla” (vs 27)
This narrow strip of wilderness, that dived the Land of Nephi from the Land of Zarahemla, was to the north of the Land of Nephi (Lamanite lands)
4. “through the borders of Manti, by the head of the river Sidon, running from the east towards the west -- and thus were the Lamanites and the Nephites divided” (vs 27).
Again, the Narrow Strip of Wilderness divided the Land of Nephi to the south from the Land of Zarahemla to the north.
5. “the Nephites had taken possession of all the northern parts of the land bordering on the wilderness, at the head of the river Sidon, from the east to the west, round about on the wilderness side; on the north, even until they came to the land which they called Bountiful” (vs 29)
So, to the North of the Land of Nephi lay the Narrow Strip of Wilderness, the Land of Zarahemla, and eventually the Land of Bountiful. That is, Bountiful lay to the north of Zarahemla.
6. “the Nephites had inhabited the land Bountiful, even from the east unto the west sea, and thus the Nephites in their wisdom, with their guards and their armies, had hemmed in the Lamanites on the south” (vs 33)
First, the Land of Bountiful ran from the east to the West Sea. Second, it was such a situation that with the Nephites controlling the Land of Bountiful, the Lamanites were hemmed in to the South. Third, because of this, the Lamanites “should have no more possession on the north, that they might not overrun the land northward: (vs 33).
Brandley’s map does not meet any of Mormon’s criteria for the Land of Promise
So tell me. With a northward relationship of the City of Nephi, Land of Nephi, City of Zarahemla, Land of Zarahemla, the City of Bountiful, and Land of Bountiful, how on earth could any historian place Zarahemla to the WEST of Bountiful? The reason for this relationship of cities and lands as Mormon explains was to show the future reader (us) that “Therefore the Lamanites could have no more possessions only in the land of Nephi, and the wilderness round about. Now this was wisdom in the Nephites -- as the Lamanites were an enemy to them” (vs 34).
Even the most cursory glance at Brandley’s map should show even the most uninformed individual that there is no way his map meets the simplest criteria of Mormon’s explanation of the layout of the Land of Promise!
(See the next post, “Brandley’s Map – Another Useless Shot in the Dark, Part II,” to see how other ways his map does not meet the simplest criteria of Mormon’s explanation of the appearance and layout of the Land of Promise)

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