Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Challenge questions 2 & 3

Who wrote the Book of Mormon?

Ancient prophets, such as Nephi, Jacob, Mormon, and Mormon's son Moroni were its primary authors. Mormon compiled and abridged the record kept by prophets about their history, prophecies and teachings. He also included some of his own experiences. Mormon engraved this record on bound sheets of metal, gold in color which are often referred to as the golden plates.

After Mormon's death, Moroni finished the record and buried it in a hill to preserve it for our day. In 1823 Moroni appeared as an angel to Joseph Smith and showed him where the record was buried. Four years later, Joseph was permitted to obtain the records. He translated the record through the gift and power of God into English from the ancient language it was written in. He then published and distributed the Book of Mormon.

What happened to the original record-the golden plates?

Joseph Smith obtained the plates in September 1827 and had them until the spring of 1829. When he wrote his history in 1838, he explained what happened to the plates: "When according to the arrangements, the messenger Moroni called for them, I delivered them up to him; and he has them in his charge until this day, being the second day of May, one thousand eight hundred and thirty eight." -Joseph Smith History 1:60

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Book of Mormon Challenge question 1

I am in the middle of 2 Nephi in my Book of Mormon challenge. I hope you are reading along with me. Go here to read along online for free. Once, or twice a week from now on I will be addressing common questions associated with The Book of Mormon. The first 8 questions are taken from the October 2011 issue of the Ensign magazine put out by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Question 1: What is the Book of Mormon, and how does it compare to the Bible?

The Book of Mormon is a book of scripture similar to the Bible. It is another testament of Jesus Christ. The Bible principally discusses the lives and teachings of ancient Israel. The Book of Mormon contains the writings of several groups who came to the Americas, including a family who left Jerusalem in 600 B.C. These people were also descendants of the house of Israel. Thus the Bible and Book of Mormon were written by people of the same heritage but in different parts of the world.

Like the Bible, the Book of Mormon is more than a historical account. It contains "the fulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ" (see D&C 20:9): the teachings, doctrines, and prophecies that testify of God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.

The Prophet Joseph Smith explained that the Book of Mormon "tells us that our Savior made His appearance upon this continent (the Americas) after His resurrection; that He planted the Gospel here in all its fulness, and richness, and power, and blessing; that they had Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers, and Evangelists, the same order, the same priesthood, the same ordinances, gifts, powers and blessings, as were enjoyed on the eastern continent;. . . that the last of their prophets who existed among them was commanded to write and abridgment of their prophecies, history, etc., and to hide it up in the earth, and that it should come forth and be united with the Bible for the accomplishment of the purposes of God in the last days."

Members of the Church study both the Bible and the Book of Mormon. In fact, two out of four years of our Sunday School curriculum are devoted to studying the Bible.