Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Were There Two Passes into the Land Northward? Part II

Continued from the previous post, regarding the location of the later mountain road as well as the narrow pass Mormon describes.
    In the time of the Jaredites, there was an area considered as “the place where the sea divides the land” (Ether 10:20), the was adjacent to the “narrow neck of land,” or at least that is how Moroni recorded it. In any event, this place of a sea dividing the land has met with uncommonly odd examples by theorists trying to substantiate their models of the Land of Promise.
    We should understand that when a sea “divides the land,” that part of a sea or ocean encroaches into the land, creating a bay or gulf that narrows the contiguous land mass, creating large land masses to one side and the other of the encroached sea. In addition, land, of course, can be “divided” by such topographical factors as “ridges that extend down toward the sea dividing the land into a series of wooded valleys; a large, extended mountain range can divide one side of the land form the other, or it can be divided by other, impassable terrain, such as deep canyons, sheer cliffs, or very wide and deep rivers.
    However, Moroni was very specific. In the case of the Jaredite land area, which he said was “divided by a sea.” But not only divided, but one that was so noticeable it was considered a location, i.e., “where the sea divides the land.” Such an obvious and noticeable sea dividing land does not seem to be located in any of the suggested theorists’ models.
Left: Overall view of coastline, showing how the inundation of a large Bay or Gulf distinctively divides the land above it from that below it; Right: Close-up of the Gulf of Quayaquil in Ecuador where the sea effectively divides the land of Ecuador from that of Peru

Now in South America, “the place where the sea divides the land” that Moroni mentioned (Ether 10:20), would be where the Gulf of Guayaquil cuts into the land about 70 miles from west to east in southwest Ecuador, creating a large 7,500-square mile bay or gulf, that separates (or divides) the land from the north to the south. Stretching about 100 miles north to south, this Gulf of Guayaquil obvious not only separates the land of Ecuador along a north-south basis, but establishes a narrow neck of land to the east of the bay about 25 miles in width, which was the only connection between the land to the north and the land in the south.
The Pacific Ocean cuts in the land to form the Gulf of Guayaquil, basically separating the land in the north from that in the south, creating a 25-mile-wide strip of land between the sea and the sharp rising mountains

This separation can be more easily understood when considering that the land just north of this Gulf is 145 miles from sea to mountains, and south of the Gulf, the land is 160 miles from the sea to the mountains. This obviously establishes the narrow neck of land that stretches across about 25 miles from the sea (eastern shore of the Gulf) to the mountains. Just as obviously, this Gulf is where the sea intrudes into the land, dividing it quite effectively and very clearly, making it an extremely noticeable landmark. There is no explanation needed to support this being “the sea that divides the land.”
    Today, along this eastern or northeastern seashore of the Gulf, beginning somewhere around Machala and ending just south of Guayaquil, is a sea-level passage between the Gulf to the west and the sheer mountains to the east. This seashore route, along what would have been called the West Sea, is effectively a “narrow neck of land,” though not separated by an East Sea at this point, though it was in BC times and up to when the destruction at the time of the crucifixion altered and changed “the whole face of the land” (3 Nephi 8:12).
    For those who have a hard time with South America being an island at one time, then the entire continent east of what is now the Andes Mountains rose out of the water, this is not unusual for the Earth’s history. Though on a smaller scale, just east of the New Hebrides, now Vanuatu, in a large group of islands just north of New Caledonia, is located the Pentecost (Pentecôte or Bislama) Island. Known originally by the indigenous Araga or Raga people as Vanu Aroaroa, it is a lush, mountainous 190-square mile island which stretches north to south over some 37 miles. While this is not a huge continent by any means, of course, it might be of interest to know that in their history, the entire island rose out of the water. According to their history, “there was a specific seismic jolt known to have taken place which caused the entire emergence of the island from under the sea” (Thomas Reuter, Sharing the Earth, Dividing the Land, ANU E Press, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia, 2006, John P. Taylor, Ch.13, p299).
The Kvarken Archipelago is a cluster of islands that are rising from the sea in the Bothnan Coast, between Finland and Sweden, the first of which arose thousands of years ago, but others have been rising ever since, and it is believed at some point, they will form a fully connected land bridge between the two countries across the Kvarken

As we have reported here in earlier articles, there are numerous such instances of where entire islands, small and large, have emerged out of the sea, and where the subsidence of others have occurred. The Earth’s land masses are not always as stable as one would believe and in innumerable places changes, sometimes drastic, take place. In fact, since 1927, 26 islands have risen around the world, with 4 in both Japan and Tonga; two in Indonesia, Iceland, Pakistan, and Yemen, and one each in Angola, Canada, Finland, Germany, Greenland, Portugal, Russia, Solomons, United States and Vanuatu. Plus there have been several landmasses rise adjacent to existing lands and islands. Almost all of these have been connected to massive eruptions, either earthquakes or volcano eruptions.
    The point is, that the Land of Promise was monumentally altered, with cities sinking into the ground and under the sea, as well as being covered by towering mountains rising up out of the earth. In addition, huge slabs of substantially-sized slabs of rock within the earth were cracked, divided and shattered into seams and cracks; mountains collapsed and became valleys, and valleys rose to tall mountains, “whose height was great.”

• Most earthquakes last from 10 to 30 seconds; 6.0 quakes last about 30-40 seconds; largest earthquakes are rarely over 5 minutes; no recorded quake has lasted over 10 minutes
• A 10.0 earthquake would be 30 times greater than a 9.0 earthquake
• There has never been a registered 10.0 earthquake
• It is believed that a 10.0 earthquake would cause ground motions for up to an hour, with a tsunami hitting while the shaking was still going on and last for several days
    For anyone who has withstood a handful of minutes in a devastating earthquake, consider that the one that hit the Land of Promise at the time of the crucifixion lasted longer than any every recorded. Consider that the longest earthquake ever recorded in Earth’s history was the Sumatra, Indonesia, quake that lasted a whopping 8.3 to 10 minutes in length, and the most devastating quake recorded was the one in Valdivia, Chile in 1960, reaching 9.5 on the Richter Scale. And lasted three hours! Three hours! Consider the damage to earth and terrain in three hours of shaking of at least a 9.5 earthquake!
    Mormon, translating the disciple Nephi’s writings, including both Samuel the Lamanite’s prophecies and Nephi’s vision of the great calamities that occurred at that time, states that the entire land was changed during the destruction we find recorded in 3 Nephi 8. What damage would occur when mountains disappear completely, collapsing into valleys; and valleys disappear, becoming sheer mountains “whose height is great.”
    What might have happened to mountain passes when the mountain disappeared, or to roads where mountains rose from valleys. And this destruction occurred throughout the Land of Promise, especially in the Land Northward. Thus, whatever routes, rivers, passes, shorelines, and necks of land that might have existed before this destruction, how much of it would have disappeared or been altered, perhaps even beyond recognition, when mountains grow up suddenly or disappear completely.
    Let us then consider, that when Mormon wrote his own book (Mormon) and abridged the writings of the other prophets from Mosiah onward, what we find within his knowledge and purview might well have been different than what existed before the crucifixion. It is interesting that many theorists claim the damage must have been minimal since both Mormon and Moroni were still able to identify the areas of which they wrote. What an odd comment when both these great men, prophets of the Lord, were writing under the influence of the Holy Spirit (Mormon 3:16,20; Ether 12:2).
(See the next post, “Were There Two Passes into the Land Northward? Part III,” to see the location of the later mountain road as well as the narrow pass Mormon describes)

No comments:

Post a Comment