Thursday, December 12, 2019

Map and book by Rian Nelson and Jonathan Neville – Part II

Continued from the previous post regarding the areas of the map and book by Rian Nelson and Jonathan Neville showing how their map locations do not match the scriptural descriptions.
5. Their map (Yellow Circle on previous map) shows that Mulek reached the Mississippi River Delta, then his route (Yellow Arrow) proceeded up the Mississippi River to the Land of Zarahemla. Yet, Moroni tells us that the Jaredite barges were blown by the wind and carried on the waves toward the Land of Promise.
“The Lord God caused that there should be a furious wind blow upon the face of the waters, towards the promised land; and thus they were tossed upon the waves of the sea before the wind” (Ether 6:5, emphasis added).
    Sometimes the waves that carried them toward the Land of Promise were quite large:
    “They were many times buried in the depths of the sea, because of the mountain waves which broke upon them, and also the great and terrible tempests which were caused by the fierceness of the wind” (Ether 6:6, emphasis added).
    It should be kept in mind that the Mississippi River is a very shallow river that runs north to south, with the current and winds blowing out to sea. It would not have been possible for the barges, being carried along the currents by the fierce winds, could have gone upriver over 800 miles to reach Zarahemla.
6. It was not the custom of the early Jews or any other early culture of civilization to name seas by direction that were not on the outskirts or beyond the culture’s lands in the direction of the name.
    “They did multiply and spread, and did go forth from the land southward to the land northward, and did spread insomuch that they began to cover the face of the whole earth, from the sea south to the sea north, from the sea west to the sea east” (Helaman 3:8, emphasis added).
    This was obviously the extremity of the Land of Promise, stretching between the sea south and the sea north, and between the sea west and the sea east—that is, the Nephites were in between these seas. However, their map (Green Circle and Lt.Blue Circle) shows Zarahemla to the Southwest of the West Sea.
7. In addition, we find that the Sea East was to the east of the Hill Cumorah, which was the same hill as the Hill Ramah of the Jaredites.
    “The army of Coriantumr did pitch their tents by the hill Ramah; and it was that same hill where my father Mormon did hide up the records unto the Lord, which were sacred” (Ether 15:11, emphasis added).
    Their map (Dk.Purple Circle) shows the East Sea to the north of the hill Cumorah, and both of which are to the West of the North Sea and east of the Land of Zarahemla.
    When Coriantumr was battling Shiz, they reached the waters of Ripliancum (Ether 25:11), and from there they fled southward (Ether 15:10). From there they fled for a full day, but no direction is given (Ether 15:28-29). By this time they are nowhere near the hill Cumorah when Coriantumr finally kills Shiz and becomes the last Jaredite standing other than Ether
8. The Sea South would be at the southern extremity of the Land of Promise, and not near Bountiful, since the lands of Zarahemla and Nephi would be north of the South Sea.
However, on their map (Orange Circle), their Sea South is far to the north of all the Nephite territory and lands.
9. Mormon tells us that the four seas were on each of the exterior boundaries of the Land of Promise.
“They did multiply and spread, and did go forth from the land southward to the land northward, and did spread insomuch that they began to cover the face of the whole earth, from the sea south to the sea north, from the sea west to the sea east” (Helaman 3:8, emphasis added).
    Their map does not show this, since this explanation was conveying where the Nephites had expanded, their four seas (Purple, Orange, Lt.Blue and Red, are all in the north, and the statement from the north to the south sea (limited to a handful of miles), if true would hardly be an appropriately descriptive statement by Mormon.
10. Mormon tells us that the Lamanites and Nephites made a treaty in which the Lamanites got all the Land Southward and the Nephites all the Land Northward (Mormon 2:28-29). He also tells is that the Lamanites broke the treaty and came into the Land Northward to attack them (Mormon 3:4,7) in the Land of Desolation where Mormon gathered his armies in the city of Desolation (Mormon 3:5)
    “I did cause my people that they should gather themselves together at the land Desolation, to a city which was in the borders, by the narrow pass which led into the land southward. And there we did place our armies, that we might stop the armies of the Lamanites, that they might not get possession of any of our lands; therefore, we did fortify against them with all our force” (Mormon 3:5-6).
    From that point on, the battles waged across the Land Northward as the Nephites fled from the city of Desolation to Teancum (Mormon 4:6,13-14) and Boaz (Mormon 4:20):
    “And from this time forth did the Nephites gain no power over the Lamanites, but began to be swept off by them even as a dew before the sun” (Mormon 4:18).
    All these battles were in the Land Northward, which is verified by Moroni who tells us that the hill Ramah in the Jaradite lands was the same hill as Cumorah (Ether 15:11).
    Thus, the hill Cumorah should be beyond the narrow neck and narrow pass and in the Land Northward. Yet, their map shows Cumorah at the southern end of their North Country, and makes no reference to the Land Northward, and also places Cumorah south of their East Sea.
11. Mormon tells us the Land of Bountiful bordered the West Sea: 
“The Nephites had inhabited the land Bountiful, even from the east unto the west sea, and thus the Nephites in their wisdom, with their guards and their armies, had hemmed in the Lamanites on the south, that thereby they should have no more possession on the north, that they might not overrun the land northward” (Alma 22:33).
    Their map does not show this. Their (Green Circle) Land Bountiful does not extend to their (Lt.Blue Circle) West Sea.
    In addition to all of this, one theorist claims, “Many members of the church are surprised to learn there is a controversy about the location of the Hill Cumorah. Most think it is in New York, a few miles south of Palmyra. It’s obvious. Joseph got the plate there. The Jaredites and Nephites died there.”
    In fact, many members think Moroni said he buried the plates in the Hill Cumorah; however, he did not tell us that. In fact, we do not know where he hid up the plates at all. We only know where they were located almost 1600 years later so Joseph Smith could obtain them.
    Mormon tells us that he buried all the plates in the Hill Cumorah except those he gave to his son, Moroni (Mormon 6:6)—which plates Joseph Smith found buried in the Hill Cumorah in western New York. Most people merely assume Moroni buried them in the hill Cumorah before his death. However, Moroni merely said he would hide up the records in the ground:
    “Therefore I will write and hide up the records in the earth; and whither I go it mattereth not” (Mormon 8:4).
    Moroni never says where he would hide up the plates. That they were in the hill in western New York near Joseph’s home about 1600 years later is no guarantee they were placed there in Moroni’s time.
    The problem with this latter issue is the fact that people reading the geographical information of the scriptural record, do not seem to take the time to understand what is factually written, but tend to make a lot of assumptions. The problem with the former issue, the map and its locations, is that people get an opinion in their mind as to where something is located, and works backward from there, continually mis-understanding the scriptural record and its very plain and clear wordage.
    Which never works out because once a location is determined, a person is forever trying to fit pieces together that do not match and are not consistent with the scriptural record and its very clear descriptions, such as the map above.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Every person that has studied the Book of Mormon and prepared a map based only on what the text says, ALWAYS places the Hill Cumorah North of the narrow neck of land.

    But North American theorists basically are saying: "Let the scriptural text be damned. Letter VII and Oliver's flowery prose demands we accept that the Hill Curmorah was actually South of the narrow neck of land."

  3. Another nail in the coffin. Well done.

  4. This is all very interesting. However, I am having difficulty in understanding the approximate distances from Land of First inheritance, to land of Nephi, to Zarahemla, to Bountiful and to the land Northward and Desolation.
    On the world map it seems like the distances between them are a thousand miles or more. Is that correct or am I mistaken?


  5. Alan: The distance from the area of First Landing (or Land of First Inheritance) would have been quite a distance from where Nephi first settled, since he was running for his life from his brothers who wanted to kill him. The distance is not as great as the distance Lehi traveled from Jerusalem to Bountiful. However, from the city of Nephi to the city of Zarahemla is less, but still considerable since when the Lamanites came down to attack Zarahemla or other Nephite cities or lands, it took them long enough that the Nephites were aware of their coming long enough in advance to prepare for their attacks.
    In addition, when the battles were over, in most cases where the Lamanites had been defeated, they returned back to their land and homes, suggesting a distance and time and the reason they waited for the following year to attack again.
    After all, it took Alma and his followers 21 days to make the journey from the Waters of Mormon (adjacent to the Land of Nephi) to the Land of Zarahemla (not the city). That distance can be estimated, but only assumed. The distances in all these cases is not given and we cannot be certain of them in the Book of Mormon.