Thursday, November 24, 2016

More Comments from Readers Part V

More comments and questions from readers of the blog: 
    Comment #1: “Sorenson claims that the Jaredite final battle was really only a war among two familes and not universal to all Jaredites. That means that there could have been Jaredites that were not destroyed—who lived on into Nephite times, contrary to your opinion” Ken J.
    Response: Sorenson promotes the continuation of the Jaredite people as Hugh Nibley did before him for the simple reason that their Mesoamerican model demands other people exist in the area besides Nephites; however, when he says some didn’t take part, we need to remember that when Shiz ran before Coriantumr, they evidently passed through several populated areas because his army “swept off the inhabitants before them, all that would not join him” (Ether 14:27).
Ether dutifully recorded the history of the Jaredites to be later included into the history of Lehi and the Land of Promise. Ether was a prophet to the entire Jaredite Kingdom, not a couple of small families

    It should be noted there is a noticeable difference between gathering together everyone in the land and just a portion of the people. Moroni makes it clear that at the end, Ether wrote that “And it came to pass that Ether did behold all the doings of the people; and he beheld that the people who were for Coriantumr were gathered together to the army of Coriantumr; and the people who were for Shiz were gathered together to the army of Shiz. Wherefore, they were for the space of four years gathering together the people, that they might get all who were upon the face of the land, and that they might receive all the strength which it was possible that they could receive. And it came to pass that when they were all gathered together, every one to the army which he would, with their wives and their children -- both men, women and children being armed with weapons of war, having shields, and breastplates, and head-plates, and being clothed after the manner of war” (Ether 15:13-15).
    However, when just a family or smaller group was involved, Moroni made that clear as in the case of Akish demanding the family swear allegiance to him and his planned evil deeds (Ether 8:13), and when Morianton gathered together an army, it is singled out as not everyone, but just “an army of outcasts” (Ether 10:9). But when talking about the Jaredites as a whole, it was all, everyone, and “they did gather together all the people upon all the face of the land, who had not been slain, save it was Ether”(Ether 15:12).
    It is amazing that Sorenson clings so doggedly to a belief of Jaredite survival that he ignores all the references to the total Jaredite destruction.   
    Comment #2: “Are you suggesting that when Mosiah discovered Zarahemla, that he merely followed one of the Nephite roads to the north and down into the Land of Zarahemla?” Jon J.
    Response: No. There likely would have been no roads built in that direction beyond the Sacred Valley, such as a road from Cuzco over to Urubamba and on to Ollantaytambo, and another from Cuzco over to Pisac and along the Urubamba River from Pisac to Ollantaytambo.
    Comment #3 “The record states that when Lehi turned and traveled east across the desert, they lived on raw meat in the wilderness. However, under the dietary laws of the Jews, they were not permitted to eat raw meat. More specifically, they could not eat meat that had visible blood in it, and they could not drink the blood (Genesis 9:4 and Deuteronomy 12:23). How do we justify this conflict?” Carlos R.
Response: The meat that Lehi’s family ate in the wilderness was probably dried and cured like jerky, which the Lord “made sweet” tasting. There would have been no blood yet it was not cooked over a fire. In the scriptural record, the term “raw meat” is used by Nephi when he writes: “that while we did live upon raw meat in the wilderness, our women did give plenty of suck for their children, and were strong, yea, even like unto the men; and they began to bear their journeyings without murmurings” (1 Nephi 17:2). While we, today, tend to associate raw meat with a slab of uncooked meat or barely cooked meat as in a steak, etc., the term raw meat means only that it was not cooked. Uncooked meat in the wilderness is often jerked, that is, raw meat that is cut into strips, salted and dried in the sun—generally it is tough and hard to chew; however, the Lord evidently softened that of Lehi’s raw meat that it “nourished them and did strengthen them” (1 Nephi 17:3).
    Comment #4: “You appear to be negative about a United States only Land of Promise. Why is that?” Adrian H.
    Response: Partly because the scriptural record shows an initial landing where the winds and currents die down along then 30º south Latitude of the Chilean coast, an area today called then Bay of Coquimbo and La Serena. From there immigrants in Hagoth’s ships traveled north, and we find a well-developed civilization in Central/MesoAmerica, and from there we find a spread of at least Lamanite culture moving further north into North America.
Joseph Smith in Zion’s Camp receives a visions regarding the White Lamanite Zelph and the prophet Onandagus known from the sea to the Rocky Mountains

    In the U.S. we find the story of Zelph and Zion’s Camp, and the prophet Onandagus, including Joseph Smith’s letter to his wife, Emma, making comment about the Plains of the Nephites in the area. Taken as a whole, we find that all of the North and South America being the overall and total Land of Promise, with parts of it dedicated to certain groups, such as the Jaredites and the promise to Lehi and his posterity in the more southern portion, i.e., South America; North America being the seat of the Church and world government from which Christ will reign, etc.
    Also because of:
1. Joseph Smith stated “…speaking of the Land of Zion, It consists of all N[orth] & S[outh] America” (Martha Jane Knowlton Coray, edited by Dean C. Jessee, “Joseph Smith’s July 19, 1840 Discourse,” Brigham Young University Studies 19:3 (Spring 1979), p. 392. Four years later, in 1844, Joseph added, “The whole of America is Zion itself from north to south” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith p362; Doctrines of Salvation, vol 3, 1956, pp73-74).
2. Orson Hyde in referring to the Land of Promise stated: “This land means both North and South America, and also the families of islands that geographically and naturally belong and adhere to the same” (JD 7:108).
3. B.H. Roberts who said, “…these two American continents [North and South]. These continents are a promised land.” (History of the Church, p552fn)
4.Wilford Woodruff said, “This land, North and South America, is the land of Zion; it is a choice land—the land that was given by promise from old father Jacob to his grandson and his descendants, the land on which the Zion of God should be established in the latter days.” Journal of Discourses (12 January 1873), 15:279.
5. Pres. Spencer W. Kimball said, “Zion was all of North and South America, like the wide, spreading wings of a great eagle, the one being North and the other South America” (Conference report April 1975, 7U, pp31-33).
6.  Ezra Taft Benson added: “This is our need today—to plant the standard of liberty among our people throughout the Americas…the struggle for liberty is a continuing one—it is with us in a very real sense today right here on this choice land of the Americas” Conference Report (October 1962), pp. 14–15; and according to Ezra Taft Benson, this included North America and South America (The Teachings of Ezta Taft Benson, 1988, p123)
7. Bruce R. McConkie, a member of the First Council of Seventy for 26 years, and a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles for 13 years, said, “The Americas are the land of Joseph—the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, the land of the Nephites, the land of the Ephraimites who are gathering in the latter days.”
Also, Nephi he saw in a vision “I looked and beheld a man among the Gentiles, who was separated from the seed of my brethren by the many waters; and I beheld the Spirit of God, that it came down and wrought upon the man; and he went forth upon the many waters, even unto the seed of my brethren, who were in the promised land” (1 Nephi 13:12). This man, Columbus, never saw or set foot on North America, but only Central and South America and the islands of the Caribbean.
    There is much more, including the descriptions in the scriptural record simply do not match the Land of Promise a Great Lakes theory shows or any other Heartland or U.S. model.

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