Thursday, August 23, 2018

In Search of Cumorah – Part III

Continuing with David A. Palmer’s book, In Search of Cumorah (“New Evidences for the Book of Mormon from Mexico”), in which the author provides his readers with some of his erroneous views of the scriptural record, and leads away from finding Cumorah with his flagrant disregard to actual scriptural wordage.
    Continuing here with Palmer’s last comment: “It is likely that the migration would have been made with the assistance from the Phoenicians,” stated in the last post with several comments about it, we add here about no Phoenicians being in the Americas anciently:
The Genographic Project was launched in 2005 by geneticist Dr. Spencer Wells, and it is currently led by anthropologist Dr. Miguel Vilar, and a team of renowned scientists. Their cutting-edge genetic and computational technologies are used to analyze historical patterns in DNA from participants around the world to better understand our shared genetic roots

According to the 2005 Genographic Project of the National Geographic Society and IBM, a five-year study analyzing historical patterns in DNA from hundreds of thousands of people around the world, including Central and South America, to better understand human genetic roots, including analyzing Y chromosomes of 1330 men showed that one in 17 men in Syria, Palestine, Tunisia, Morocco, Cyprus, and Malta found still have Phoenician DNA, but no such markers appeared in the Americas (Brian Haughton, History’s Mysteries, New Page Books, Career Press, Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, 2010, p237).
    Continuing with yet, another example of Palmer’s comments about the Mulekites (p146):
    Palmer: “It is only from occasional glimpses that we catch the impact upon the Nephites of their contemporaries.”
    Response: First of all, the word “contemporary” is taken from the original word known in Joseph Smith’s time “coetaneous,” which means “living at the same time, applied to persons; being or existing at the same time.” Thus, as most theorists, and all Mesoamerican theorists do, Palmer is introducing an unknown people that existed at the same time in the Land of Promise with the Nephites, Lamanites and Mulekites. Secondly, it might be asked once again: “What contemporaries”? Other than the Mulekites and Lamanaites, there were none in the Land of Promise of which we know based on the entire 1000-year covered history of the Nephites.
Coriantumr wandered into the Mulekite area of Zarahemla after wandering from the Land Northward following his killing of the last Jaredite, Shiz

Palmer, then goes on to claim that the Mulekites interacted with the Jaredites, even though there is not a single example of any contact other than Coriantumr, the last Jaredite who lived among the Mulekites for nine months, whose language the Mulekites could not understand. Palmer states (p146):
    Palmer: “The context of the Mulekite contact with the Jaredite culture is useful in further substantiating a gulf Coast location for Mormon’s Cumorah.”
    Response: How, it might be asked, could it be useful when there was no contact shown, listed, or intimated? And why is Palmer trying to lay claim to a Gulf Coast location for Cumorah when no such suggestion is found anywhere in the scriptural record? After all, Cumorah was in the Land of Many Waters (Mormon 6:4), with no mention of any coast nearby at all.
    Now, we see that Palmer is using his own ideas in place of those in the scriptural record. Take as an example his unsubstantiated claim about Jaredite arrival in the New World (p128-129):
    Palmer: “The Jaredites arrived in the Land of Promise in 2700 BC.”
    Response: This is an interesting idea when Moses places the dating of the Jardites around 2100 B.C., during the days of Peleg, 250 years after the Flood. However, Palmer, in his evidently superior insight and knowledge places the Jaredites 350 years in the Land of Promise before the Flood! Yet, he goes on to add:
    Palmer: “Unfortunately, a period of about 700 years passed before the Jaredites were able to even begin to establish a civilized nation.”
The dates of the Patriarchs and their age when the next patriarch was born is a continuing dating system the Lord dictated to Moses who wrote the book of Genesis, giving us the dates from the time of Adam forward. This shows those Biblical dates according to Genesis. It might be of interest to know that Joseph Smith used these dates to teach the second lesson in the School of the Prophets

Response: Just to make his dating clear, that so-called seven hundred years would have been during the last 350 years of Noah’s life before the Flood, during the Flood, then 350 years after the Flood, to the last days of Peleg’s life. Hardly consistent with the biblical record, or that of the scriptural record of the Book of Mormon, for the days of the Babylonian Tower would have been around 2100 B.C., not 2700 B.C.
    Undaunted by his unsupportable dating, Palmer then adds regarding “Jaredite Chronology”(P128):Palmer: “[Jaredite] short-lived settlement on the east coast near Ramah when the Moron population was reduced to 30 people by wars.”
    Response: Now this would be around the year 2430, about 86 years before the Flood. The interesting this about his time line is that Palmer places the final civil war and destruction of the Jaredites at 600 B.C., yet the Mulekites were not even in the Land of Promise by then, let alone interacting with the Jaredites. Not finished, Palmer in another interesting example of misunderstanding the scriptural record, claims that
    Palmer: “Leaving Jerusalem, both groups (Lehi and Mulek) were led by inspired leaders.”
    Response: While on the surface this is true, Palmer brings the Mulekites to the Land of Promise via Phoenician sailors. So how would an inspired Jewish leader get Phoenician sailors to obey him in something as uncertain as traveling across the great ocean which no one had ever ventured in order to take the Muelkites to the Land of Promise?
    It should not be forgotten that those Phoenicians about this time, when they sailed around the coast of Africa, did so sailing only in the daylight hours and landing each night, to replenish supplies, food, and make repairs to their vessels. That is a far sight from sailing directly across the ocean to the Western Hemisphere—something that was not even considered or believed possible as much as 2000 years later, until Columbus did so in 1492 AD.
Columbus’ three-ship fleet that sailed to the New World: The Nina, Pinta and the Santa Maria, undertook a dangerous voyage into unknown waters in an era when others who made such attempt never returned

In addition, if the Phoenicians were the maritime seamen claimed, then surely they would not have followed some unknown religious leader, inspired or not, of a religion they did not know, practice or respect, when their very lives on the open sea would have been at stake. After all, Columbus’ crew threatened mutiny after only two months at sea if they didn’t see land within the next few days. What would the Phoenicians have done, being in charge of their own ships? Would they have followed such a religious leader who knew absolutely nothing of the sea?
    Sometimes theorists act as if the same ideas of sailing with today’s GPS, ocean depth charts, current location and flows, advanced boat design, exceptional knowledge of the earth, its oceans, and winds, was known to sailors in 600 BC in and over waters that had not before been entered. It seems as though these theorists think that everyone was an adventurer, held their lives in disregard, and would have jumped at the chance to take the fleeing Mulekites across thousands of miles of unknown ocean to an unknown destination, without any more assurance than the leader of the group knew from a vision where he wanted to go. People were not like that, any more than they are today, to become embroiled in a deadly enterprise without lengthy study, planning, and experienced input from those who have done so before.
    It is doubtful that most theorists who take Lehi and others of the scriptural record on such dangerous courses, have ever been to sea where they are in deep waters and there is not a single landmark around, nor a sunny day where they can see the sun’s movement, or cloudy nights where there are no stars. Under any circumstances it is the most isolated place a person can find oneself, especially when there is no GPS, compass, sextant, or way to determine where one is and therefore where it is one wants to go. However, such a situation never seems to have any impact upon these theorists’ views of how Lehi reached the area of their opined location of the Land of Promise.
(See the next post, In Search of Cumorah – Part IV,” for more information on “In Search of Cumorah,” by David A. Palmer, and how theorists tend to change the scriptural record and its meaning in order to validate their beliefs and models)

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