Saturday, November 26, 2016

The Problem with Time – Part II

Continuing from the previous post, listing here more information about the destruction in 3 Nephi 8 and its significant meaning in understanding the location of the Land of Promise.    First, let us return to 3 Nephi 8, since we need to understand exactly what happened then, and how it affected the land and what can be seen from this today. Let us go over the list of things that took place:
1. Great storm, greater than any ever been seen in all the land (8:5)
2. Strong and terrible tempest (8:6;12,17; 10:14)
3. Terrible thunder that shook the whole earth as if it were to divide asunder (8:6:12,17)
4. The Earth cleaved apart (10:10, emphasis added—we’ll come back to this all important point)
5. Shaking of the whole earth as if to divide asunder (8:6,12,14,17,19; 10:9)
6. Exceedingly sharp lightning never before seen or known in all the land (8;7,12,17);
7. Burning of Zarahemla (8:8,24; 9:3)
8. Burning of the cities of Jacobugath, Laman, Josh, Gad, and Kishkumen (8:14; 9:9-10; 10:14)
9. Sinking of the city of Moroni into the sea (8:9; 9:4)
10. Waters come up over the cities of Onihah, Mocum, and Jerusalem (9:7; 10:13)
11. The whole face of the land in the Land Northward was changed and deformed (8:12, 17)
12. Whirlwinds that carried away people (8:12,16; 10:13-14)
13. Breaking up of highways and earth (8:13)
14. Shaking and breaking up of cities, destruction of inhabitants (8:14,15)
15. People killed by falling objects that crushed them to death (10:13)
16. Earth opened and people and perhaps cities fell into (10:14)
17. City of Moronihah covered with earth (9:5)
18. Cities of Gilgal, Gadiandi, Gadiomnah, Jacob, and Gimgimno sunk, and were covered by hills and valleys (9:6,8)
19. Places were left desolate (8:14)
20. Breaking of rocks in two, broken and fragments scattered over the face of the whole earth (8:18; 10:9)
21. Earth broken, creating seams and cracks on all the face of the land (8:18)
22. Earth did cleave together again (10:10)
23. Three-hour duration of initial events (8:19)
24. Three-day duration of thick darkness (8:19,22,23; 10:9,13)
25. The Earth trembled, rocks rent, dreadful groanings, and tumultuous noises lasted three days (10:9)
26. Conspicuous and unmistakable darkness (8:20)
27. No fires or lights (8:21)
28. Very dry wood (8:21)
29. Objects and people could not be seen (8:21)
30. Vapors of smoke that killed people (10:13-14)
    Since some of these statements may not be clear to everyone, let us define certain ones that might be misunderstood:
• “In all the land” means in all of the Land of Promise
• “Divide asunder” means to break up into bits and pieces
• “Cleave apart” means to split apart or sever along natural lines or grain
• “The whole earth” means the entire Land of Promise and some lands “round-about”
• “On all the face of the land” means all of the land in the Land of Promise
• “Cleave together” reunited or bring together along natural lines or seams
• “Groanings and tumultuous noises” are the result of tectonic plates slamming into each other and the grinding of the earth that pushed by one and subducted the other. Such sounds have been recorded in Ecuador occasionally in modern times, so figure the noises that would occur when these movements were magnified during a three-hour period to cause all the damage and change described.
    On another seldom understood subject, is the statement in connection with this destruction that “And the earth did cleave together again, that it stood” (3 Nephi 10:10).
Left: In chopping wood, when the axe “cleaves” the block of wood, it cuts in the direction (Right:) of the grain. Note white arrow running with the grain

    As mentioned above, “to cleave” means to separate along given lines, such as in chopping wood, i.e., you put the wood vertically to expose the grain and chop the axe downward so it cuts into the grain, splitting the wood along its natural connections.
    Thus, evidently, during this three-day period, the earth was not only broken up, but actually separated apart along some type of lines of creation or organization, for the scriptural record tells us that following all of this tumult and destruction, it “did cleave together again, that it stood” (3 Nephi 10:10, emphasis mine).
    Obviously, then, for something to “cleave together” or be put back together, it must first “cleave apart” or split apart—thus this destruction of 3 Nephi 8 must have been something so severe that it not only shook the entire earth for three hours (at least the Land of Promise area), followed by three days, but brought the severed parts back together again at the end of this period (see the next post for a detail discussion on this issue).
    We can recognize this severity when we consider what was taking place in a larger picture, i.e., the disappearance of the Sea East as those parts of the South American continent were brought up out of the ocean as the eastern land tilted upward, raising the western shores upward as well and bringing the 2.67-million-square-mile Amazon Basin up out of the sea. In fact, the Amazon drainage basin, often referred to as Amazonia, covers an area roughly 40-percent of the entire continent, and is still partially underwater with rainforests and flooded forests. While much of it came only level with the sea and remains a swampy, boggy, water-seeped land that pours approximately 7,740,000 cubic feet of water—roughly the equivalent of 88 Olympic-size swimming pools—flow from the river into the Atlantic Ocean every second. And the Orinoco River, called the Orinoquia, or drainage, covers 340,000 square miles and drains at the rate of between 100,000 and 200,000 cubic feet per second
It is interesting that the concept of volcanoes in 3 Nephi 8 is the only viable explanation of the events that took place; however, as we have reported previously, this is the reason Heartland, Great Lakes and Eastern U.S. theorists discredit the idea of “volcanoes” during this time because 1) volcanoes are not mentioned in the scriptural record, and 2) they have no volcanoes in their Land of Promise models in central and eastern U.S. Yet, the point is, any reasonable person reading the passages in 3 Nephi 8 would conclude that volcanoes were being described, and understand that they are not mentioned because the word “volcano” did not exist in any vocabulary at the time of Mormon.
(See the next post, “The Problem With Time – Part III,” for more on this discussion and for an eye-opening discussion on an area of the scriptural record never discussed before of which we are aware)

1 comment:

  1. “Cleave together" is an interesting term. I've mapped quite a number of faults in my career as a geologist. When the earthquake happens the fault scarp will break instantaneously. After which the break or crack will begin to fill with debris. The time of Christ would have been somewhat different because things were being stretched over a long period of time of 3 hours. The cracks and seams would not have had time to fill in during that period of time. So I can see how after the rising it would appear to cleave together or the cracks and seams with vertical or near vertical walls would begin to fill in. Great article - thanks.