Saturday, May 2, 2020

More Comments from Readers – Part IV

Here are more comments that we have received from readers of this website blog:
Comment #1: “Since the term “corn” is applied in agriculture to the seed of the cereal plants, and that the word is often understood locally to mean that kind of cereal which is the leading crop of a country, which may be wheat, barley, oats, maize (Indian corn) rye, millet, or even rice, what makes you think that the Nephites, who use the term “corn” in Mosiah 9:9, actually meant corn and not some other grain? After all, John Sorenson of BYU also thinks that this Nephite “corn” is really another crop” Joey W.
Response: According to the Encyclopedia of the new American Nation, 1754-1829, in the earlier part of the eighteenth century New England farmers supplied the Caribbean and southern Europe with wheat, corn, and flour. Today, New England dietary habits have been studied for this period in more detail than those of other regions, and research suggests that the seasonal diet of the early colonial period had given way by the late eighteenth century to a more diversified fare throughout the year. In colonial times, settlers subsisted mainly on breads made with corn, which Amerindians taught them how to grow and cook, as well as other corn-based dishes, such as hasty pudding and other cornmeal mushes or porridges.
Top: Wheat; Middle: Barley; Bottom: Corn

Colonists also made breads from a corn and rye mix. By the early nineteenth century, however, wealthier inhabitants were using wheat grain and flour. A few commonalities did exist among groups across the U.S., including the south and west, as well as New England; for instance, corn (often called Indian corn or maize) and pork remained staples well into the nineteenth century for virtually all.
    According to the New England Farmer and Horticultural Journal, Vol XII, No. 43, published in Boston on May 7, 1834, in an article by George C. Barrett, in answering an inquiry of a Mr. Fesenden, corn was not only one of the most important crops known in New England in 1829, it was a perfect seed for the decomposing soil to give a rich crop of corn. And according to Frederick Jackson Turner, “New England 1820-1830,” Historian: Rise of the New West 1819-1829, “Agriculture still occupied the larger number of New England people, but it was relatively a declining interest. As early as 1794, Tench Coxe had characterized New England as a completely settled region, with the exception of Maine and Vermont. 
   The generation that followed saw an expansion of agricultural population until the best valley lands were taken and the hill-sides were occupied by struggling farmers. By 1830 New England was importing corn and flour in large quantities from the other sections. The raising of cattle and sheep increased as grain cultivation declined.”
    The point is, Joseph Smith, of New England, and a farming family that dated back three generations in farming, used the term “corn,” which the spirit acknowledged as accurate; in addition, Joseph used that term along with two other major grains: wheat and barley, separating the more common grains already known and understood (kinds of cereal which would have been the leading crops of the time) while adding two unknown grains along with the list, showing that “wheat, barley and corn,” were well known grains, while neas and sheum were two grains not known to him, so he used the original name written on the plates.
According to Zoologists, the Ground Sloth disappeared some 11,000 years ago—this three-toed sloth is lives mostly in tall trees, is the world’s slowest animal, and provides little value to man

As for Sorenson, he also thinks two animals as valuable to man as the elephant might be the sloth and tapir. You might want to think twice about going around quoting Sorenson on such matters.
Comment #2: “Regarding gold and silver in the Land of Promise, I read this article recently, “These are two precious metals mentioned in the Book of Mormon as coming from the lands of the Jaredites (Ether 9:17, 10:23) as well as those of the Nephites and Lamanites. As given in the Book of Helaman for example (6:9), Lamanites and Nephites had an exceeding plenty [emphasis added] of gold and silver in both the land south and in the land north. Gold was discovered in the Promised Land not long after Lehi and his group arrived there. It was apparently abundant to the people from the start of colonization (1 Nephi 18:25). Gold and silver are plentiful in Mesoamerica. Mexico now stands as a significant producer of the World’s gold. It is also especially rich in silver. To the contrary the Eastern United States, including New York, has produced only negligible amounts of gold and silver. There has been no reporting of gold or silver here in pre-Columbian time as well.” How does your South America stack up against this?” Jonathan W.
Response: First of all, you quote a lengthy article from Wade E. Miller and Matthew Roper that appeared in The Interpreter, “A Journey of Mormon Scripture,” in which they write about the Book of Mormon Lands. Secondly, and this is quite important and is a mistake so many people make when comparing Mesoamerica with other areas, is that Mesoamerica is an area from around Mexico City in Mexico southward to, and including the Yucatan, Belize, Guatemala and western Honduras. 
    However, much of the precious ores found in Mexico come from the north (north of Mexico City) as well as Western Mexico, again outside the area known as Mersoamerica. Those that are in what is called Mesoamerica come from Mexico (mostly Western Mexico), not Guatemala, Yucatan, Belize or western Honduras.
Most of the mines in Mexico are in northern and western Mexico, both areas outside the Mesoamerica location

It should be noted that the top 7 Silver mines in Mexico—only one is in Mesoamerica; the top 6 gold mines in Mexico—only one is in Mesoamerica; of the top 9 copper mines in Mexico—only one is in Mesoamerica
    As can be seen, the gold, silver and copper in Mexico is not in the area of Mesoamerica for the most part. In fact, the so-called “mining belt” of Mexico is north, between Mexico City and the U.S. border, where most of the gold, silver and copper has been mined in Mexico. There is also a significant belt along the west coast, which would be in the Mesoamerican area of the northwest corner of the Land Northward. 
    What is important to understand, is that the area the Mesoamericanists’ claim the Nephites and Lamanites occupied does not contain any gold, silver or copper to speak of, much in the manner of the Great Lakes and eastern United States, which the Mesoamericanists and Roper criticizes in this very article.
    The point is, gold, silver and copper have been found in abundance in Mexico which, at best can satisfy the scriptural indication that the Jaredites had gold and silver; however, it does not address the fact that the Nephites, from their area of first landing onward, had great quantities of gold, silver and copper—none of which has been found to any degree in the Nephite and Lamanite lands claimed to be in Mesoamerica.
    As has been reported in these posts over the years, Chile and Peru lead the world in gold, silver and copper reserves, production, and mining—read some of our blog posts on this for a detailed account and a complete understanding of where the gold, silver and copper have been found in these areas—any internet articles on gold, silver and copper production show the tremendous amounts of each found in Andean Chile and Peru, far more than all of Mexico combined.
Comment #3: “We talk a lot about the Jews wanting to kill Lehi, but not the reason behind their animosity. Do you have any insights on this?” LeRoy M.
Response: Lehi was a visionary man, that is he had visions, sometimes called “dreams” in the scriptures. At one point, Lehi, who had been away, perhaps on business, returned to his home at Jerusalem and cast himself upon his bed, being overcome by the Spirit and the things which he had witnessed. 
    As he was thus overcome with the Spirit, “he was [again] carried away in a vision,” in which he “saw the heavens open, and he thought he saw God sitting upon his throne, surrounded with numberless concourses of angels in the attitude of singing and praising their God” (1 Nephi 1:8). He next saw “One,” who undoubtedly was Jesus, “descending out of the midst of heaven” (1 Nephi 1:9) Jesus’ luster was described as “above that of the sun at noon-day.” Twelve others followed Jesus and their brightness exceeded the “stars in the firmament” (1 Nephi 1:10).
    Jesus presented Lehi with a book and bade him read it. As he read the account, he was filled with the Spirit of the Lord. It was confirmed to him that Jerusalem should be destroyed and many of its inhabitants should perish by the sword while others should be carried away into Babylon (1 Nephi 1:13). Evidently, Lehi was now, if he had not been before, a special witness of Jesus Christ, a prophet in the fullest sense (1 Nephi 1:14-15).
Lehi preaching in Jerusalem, calling for people to repent or be destroyed

Anxious to share this great theophany—this vision about Jesus Christ with his people, Lehi went among the inhabitants of Jerusalem prophesying of those things that he had seen in the vision. But the Jews mocked him and sought his life as they had the lives of the prophets of old. A man is not warmly accepted if he does not espouse the popular cause. To speak of their defeat and capture would surely solicit such responses as “traitor,” “coward,” and “liar,” from the Jewish faithful and the hard-hearted who relied upon their being the children of Abraham—this it had always been and would remain.
    It is never popular to promote or champion an unpopular view, especially one that calls to man his shortcomings and weaknesses. The only way most people can live with their sins is by shutting up those who call them to their attention—and in the days of the Old Testament, it was to kill them.

1 comment:

  1. Another very important post today!If this old mans memory is correct never in the written history of the world has more gold been seen than by the Pizzaro brothers and their little army in the conquest of the Inca empire. They observed a golden chain that took 1500 men to carry .To this day that chain has never been found. That was only a small part of what they witnessed.