Monday, July 28, 2014

Questions I Would Like to Ask – Part XVII

Using strictly the scriptures, I would like to ask the following questions of those many Theorists who claim their pet theories about the location of the Land of Promise are consistent with the scriptural record. 
    This seventeenth question is directed to all those Theorists who have a model for their Land of Promise and claim it to be scripturally accurate.
    The question to ask is quite simple and strictly scripturally based:
    17. “Where is the great temple tower that Noah built, that was tall enough for him to climb up and look out over the land and see the Lamanites in far off lands approaching?” (Mosiah 11:12)
The type of stone construction found at Sacsayhuaman. When the Spanish saw these walls and the tower built out of oddly cut and angled stone set without mortar that even a knife blade could not penetrate, they thought it the work of the Devil
    First, during king Noah’s evil tax (Mosiah 11:3) and build (Mosiah 11:8-11) programs in the City of Nephi, “he built a tower near the temple; yea, a very high tower, even so high that he could stand upon the top thereof and overlook the land of Shilom, and also the land of Shemlon, which was possessed by the Lamanites; and he could even look over all the land round about” (Mosiah 11:12).
    Second, a tower of that height would not have been built out of wood, but something quite sturdy, like stone. It is easy for Theorists to claim that it was wood and, therefore, would not have lasted, but a tower of that height out of wood would have been wobbly and unstable and doubtful a tower men would have been stationed on to watch for Lamanite approaches to the city.
    Third, the purpose of the tower, after all, was to give warning. It would have been constructed as sturdy as they could make it in order to have watchmen upon it day and night in case of a Lamanite attack.
A drawing made from the Spanish chronicler’s description of the city of Cuzco when the Spanish arrived, each building reconstructed on its still-surviving foundations. Note the white arrow in the upper right, showing the round tower on the hill overlooking the city (National Geographic December 1973)
    Fourth, when Gideon was chasing king Noah to slay him, Noah “ran and got upon the tower which was near the temple” suggesting it was some type of refuge and not just a wood structure (Mosiah 19:5).
The view from the Temple atop the hill overlooking Cuzco. From the tower next to the temple, the two distance valleys (yellow arrows) beyond Cuzco could be seen
    Fifth, “and the king cast his eyes round about towards the land of Shemlon, and behold, the army of the Lamanites were within the borders of the land” (Mosiah 19:6).
    Sixth, when the Spanish arrived in the city of Cuzco, they saw a huge temple complex built up on a plateau beyond the city, and next to this temple was a round tower built of stone and more than 100-feet tall, and 80 feet in diameter with a thatched roof over the top open floor where a person could stand and look out over the city and valley below.
The tower base at Sacsayhuaman above Cuzco. When the Spanish arrived this was a five story tall tower, which figured prominently in the bloody battle between Inca leaders and the Spanish conquistadores in 1536. Eventually the Spanish tore down the tower, believing it to be the work of the Devil
    Seventh, the tower area was called Muyuqmarka or Muyuq Marka (in the Quechuan language), but sometimes it is written as Muyucmarka and even Moyoc Marca. This is a small Inca ruin consisting of three concentric circular wall ruins that used to be a tower located inside Sacsayhuamán. Though, Muyucmarca is the name of the place, not the tower. Three water channels were constructed, which were probably used for filling a reservoir in the center of the sites.
    Eighth, this tower was built by the temple in the City of Nephi, the latter being the temple Nephi built that was patterned after Solomon’s Temple “And I, Nephi, did build a temple; and I did construct it after the manner of the temple of Solomon save it were not built of so many precious things; for they were not to be found upon the land, wherefore, it could not be built like unto Solomon's temple. But the manner of the construction was like unto the temple of Solomon; and the workmanship thereof was exceedingly fine” (2 Nephi 5:16).
    Ninth, also next to the temple was a series of labyrinthal underground caverns cut into the rock interconnected through subterranean channels, an imperial residence, with lavish inner chambers and a series of warriors barracks. The Spanish claimed that in its entirety, the inner fortress could have housed as many as ten thousand people under siege.
    Tenth, this tower next to this temple and inner fortress was been built out of as sturdy rock as were the adjoining buildings.
Eleventh, according to modern thinking, Sacsayhuaman was supposedly built by the Inca and completed around 1508. Depending on who you listen to, it took a crew of 20,000 to 30,000 men working for 60 years. Here is a mystery for the chronicler Garcilaso de la Vega (left) was born around 1530, and raised in the shadow of these walls, and played within the walls as a child. And yet he seems not to have had a clue as to how Sacsayhuaman was built. He wrote: "....this fortress surpasses the constructions known as the seven wonders of the world. For in the case of a long broad wall like that of Babylon, or the colossus of Rhodes, or the pyramids of Egypt, or the other monuments, one can see clearly how they were, by summoning an immense body of workers and accumulating more and more material day by day and year by year, they overcame all difficulties by employing human effort over a long period. But it is indeed beyond the power of imagination to understand now these Indians, unacquainted with devices, engines, and implements, could have cut, dressed, raised, and lowered great rocks, more like lumps of hills than building stones, and set them so exactly in their places. For this reason, and because the Indians were so familiar with demons, the work is attributed to enchantment." The point being, if Garcilaso did not know who built it, nor any of the Inca he grew up with or the adults he knew, how can it be said that Sacsayhuaman was finished in his lifetime. Obviously, the answer lies in the fact that the structure was far older than that, so old no living Inca had any memory of how it was built or by whom, or of anyone in their memory who knew.
Top: The three zig-zag walls guarding the temple site and fortress at Sacsayhuaman; Bottom Left: Stones cut in rounded fashion to prevent anyone climbing up wall corners; Bottom Right: Note the carved stones that fit without mortar. So perfectly cut and fit, not a knife blade or slip of paper can fit between the joints
    Twelfth, while many of the structures themselves have long been torn down, the walls still remain of these fantastically constructed stones that weighed many tons (some hundreds of tons), with carved corners, needing no mortar, that have withstood at least two thousand years or more of earthquakes and upheavels. In fact, archaeologists tell us that the walls of Sacsayhuaman rose ten feet higher than what we see today, with that additional ten feet of stones torn down by the Spanish and used to build the cathedrals and casas of the conquistadores.
    So we ask again, “Where is the great temple tower that Noah built, that was tall enough for him to climb up and look out over the land and see the Lamanites in far off lands approaching?"

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