Thursday, March 17, 2016

The Interesting Timing of King Benjamin's Sermon

This post will be a little different and will detail the Sermon of King Benjamin like some others have not done.

We read that the people that arrived at King Benjamin's tower separated themselves into families and listened from their tents.  Those that were too far away from the king had the written words given unto them in one form or another.

Back in my mission I casually put down General Conference /Liahona Oct 124 BC given that it was October 2006 when I was reading the first few chapters of Mosiah.

When I studied the Old Testament in 2014 in conjunction with the blood moon phenomenon I was floored when I read about the Feast of Tabernacles from the Bible Dictionary and Topical guide as well as Jewish sources.

The feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot was so named because the families would surround the temple in smaller Tabernacles or tents.  The people would preach the Law and the Prophets concerning Messiah.

That is precisely what King Benjamin does here!  He preaches the Law, talks of the Messiah, and the families surround the Temple.

In other words, we have, in the Americas in 124 BC, a Sukkot ceremony!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Zion: Where is it?

There really is a short answer and a long answer for it.  Quite a few people especially the Heartlanders get into a tizzy whenever someone mentions that Zion is the entire continent--North and South America.  Others get into a tizzy when Zion is mentioned as being in Jackson County, Missouri.

It seems with this as well as other instances of Book of Mormon Geography Wars, we seem to be shouting over our heads without trying to come to an understanding on the concept of the location of Zion.

Here are some quotes on the subject.

 For behold, they rejected all the words of Ether; for he truly told them of all things, from the beginning of man; and that after the waters had receded from off the face of this land it became a choice land above all other lands, a chosen land of the Lord; wherefore the Lord would have that all men should serve him who dwell upon the face thereof;
 And that it was the place of the New Jerusalem, which should come down out of heaven, and the holy sanctuary of the Lord.
 Behold, Ether saw the days of Christ, and he spake concerning a New Jerusalem upon this land.
 And he spake also concerning the house of Israel, and the Jerusalem from whence Lehi should come—after it should be destroyed it should be built up again, a holy cityunto the Lord; wherefore, it could not be a new Jerusalem for it had been in a time of old; but it should be built up again, and become a holy city of the Lord; and it should be built unto the house of Israel—
 And that a New Jerusalem should be built up upon this land, unto the remnant of the seed of Joseph, for which things there has been a type. (Ether 13:2-6)
This scripture would definitely be pointing Ether (a Jaredite prophet) in the lands of the USA at or near Missouri.  The quote of "THIS LAND" would definitely be used by Heartland proponents as the location of Zion and they are partially right.
The Zion spoken of here is the New Jerusalem which is to be built up in Missouri.  It is the CENTER STAKE of Zion.  But it is not Zion in itself.  Zion is the entire American continent...
38 And it came to pass that Jared spake again unto his brother, saying: Go and inquire of the Lord whether he will drive us out of the land, and if he will drive us out of the land, cry unto him whither we shall go. And who knoweth but the Lord will carry us forth into a land which is choice above all the earth? And if it so be, let us be faithful unto the Lord, that we may receive it for our inheritance.
 39 And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did cry unto the Lord according to that which had been spoken by the mouth of Jared.
 40 And it came to pass that the Lord did hear the brother of Jared, and had compassion upon him, and said unto him:
 41 Go to and gather together thy flocks, both male and female, of every kind; and also of the seed of the earth of every kind; and thy families; and also Jared thy brother and his family; and also thy friends and their families, and the friends of Jared and their families.
 42 And when thou hast done this thou shalt go at the head of them down into the valley which is northward. And there will I meet thee, and I will go before thee into a land which is choice above all the lands of the earth. (Ether 1:38-42)
The Book of Mormon informs us that the whole of America, both North and South, is a choice land above all other lands, in other words—Zion. The Lord told the Jaredites that he would lead them to a land ‘which is choice above all the lands of the earth’  --Doctrines of Salvation--Joseph Fielding Smith
“In 1844, the Prophet Joseph Smith made this solemn proclamation: ‘The whole of America is Zion itself from north to south’ (Teachings [of the Prophet Joseph Smith], p. 362). The Lord Himself decreed: ‘This is a land which is choice above all other lands’ (Ether 2:10). This nation is part of the land of Zion. This is a land dedicated by God’s servants. When a Book of Mormon prophet referred to the nations of the world, this hemisphere was designated as ‘good’ (Jacob 5:25–26)” (Ezra Taft Benson, Teachings (1988, 23)
Bless Thy work upon this great continent of South America which is part of the land of Zion. Bless Thy work in this nation of Chile. May all that has been done in the past be but a prologue to a far greater work in the future. May there be an ever-growing number of wards and stakes. May Thy people be recognized for the virtue of their lives. Bless the land with peace and righteousness, and bless all who govern that Thy sons and daughters may rejoice in the nation of which they are a part. (President Gordon B Hinckley, Temple Dedication, Santiago Chile Temple 1981)
It is pretty clear to me and it should be clear to the reader that Zion is the entire CONTINENT and not just one nation.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Ezra Taft Benson, and Gordon B. Hinckley so stated.  Joseph Smith so stated.  Zion has a center stake, in Missouri.  But the land of Zion is the entire continent.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Where did Lehi, Mulek, and Jared land?--Introduction

This question has plagued many of the scholars that have investigated the text.  Not helping any of those matters, are different quotes reputed to be from the same subject that would indicate three different places for Lehi and his band...

With this post it is my intention to show that the quotes may very easily have been misconstrued and that there were indeed three different landing sites.

One:  The family of Lehi.

Two:  The family of Mulek.

Three:  The family of Jared.

There is a quote attributed to Joseph Smith by Frederick G. Williams that the landing party of Lehi landed in Chile, near 30 degrees south latitude.  However the quote is in Brother Williams' handwriting and it cannot be ascertained if the quote is directly from the Prophet.  However there were quite a few that believed this theory for a while, most notably Orson Pratt.  Parley P. Pratt also briefly served a mission in Chile in 1851.

Another quote puts the landing just south of the isthmus of Darien, in what would be today's Colombia.  The quote appears in the Times and Seasons in 1842.  The quote is attributable to Joseph Smith though at the time it was John Taylor and not Joseph Smith as the author, so the quote though stronger than the Chile quote, is still hearsay.

Though there is not a third landing site proposed by the early leaders, the Book of Mormon describes the Jaredite voyage in great detail.  A sailor describes the most probable route taken by the Jaredites, having them land in what is Guatemala, which, ironically, is where quite a few of the Mesoamerican theory defenders state that Lehi had landed.

After a careful reading of the source code (the Book of Mormon itself), it has come to my attention that the three landing sites are indeed correct.

1.  The Nephite landing DID occur in Chile.

2.  The Mulekite landing DID occur near the Isthmus of Darien (Colombia).

3.  The Jaredite landing (which some think is the Nephite landing) happened in Guatemala.

Here is my reasoning.


The Nephites and the Mulekites don't even know each other until the first King Mosiah receives a revelation to flee to the land of Zarahemla where they then discover the people, which were as big if not bigger than the Nephites.  They were the Mulekites, then called the people of Zarahemla.  One thing to note is that though relative closeness is implied in the text (it took three weeks to travel between the land of Nephi and the land of Zarahemla), we are talking about lands here and not necessarily the cities.  Even in the days before cars, Internet, etc, a distance of 500 km was not insurmountably big as to avoid contact for over 400 years.  One can read the ancient annals of how Rome even sent ambassadors to China in the time of Marcus Aurelius and knew of people far beyond their borders in every direction though they did not control those areas.  A reading of the Aztecs before Cortes and the Incas before Pizarro even suggest that there were indirect trading links between both empires via Central America.


The Jaredites occupied the Land Northward, northward even of the Mulekites, who apparently were also unaware of their presence until Coriantumr, last survivor of the Jaredite race, shows up to them.  Even so, they did not explore the area and the area was relatively unknown to them (as well as to the Nephites) until the time of King Mosiah (in Zarahemla) and King Limhi (in Nephi).  As there were indirect links between the two continents in pre-Columbian America, it stands for logic and reason that the three civilizations, initially, were spread very far apart.

Purpose of this Blog

First of all, I would like to note that this blog is NOT an official site of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, also known as the LDS Church.  The opinions therein even when citing others are, just that, OPINION.

The author of this blog has over his study of the Book of Mormon collected various hypotheses over where the events of the Book of Mormon took place over its narrative, starting with one family in Jerusalem, and ending on the side of Hill Cumorah in present-day New York.

The author is saddened at the constant griping and attacking that is so prevalent for one theory or another, presupposing their opinions (not doctrines) to be true while discounting valuable evidence that exists that would back up the rival theories.

The author previously suscribed to the Mesoamerican theory of the Book of Mormon, however, new evidences from different parts of the American Continent, along with many other interesting markers over time, have led me to believe that while Mesoamerica is important in the Book of Mormon in certain parts (especially the Jaredite occupation of the land up into North America), there are also compelling evidences for portions of the Book of Mormon to have taken place in South America, as well as North America.

It is not a hemispheric theory as much as three existing theories (Andean, Mesoamerican, Heartland) working together.  The author has explored vestiges of Book of Mormon evidences from the central coasts of Chile in the south, to Cardston, Alberta in the north.  He has observed the prophecies that are in all the land from south to north, in the Scriptures, in Temple Dedications, in missionary work dedications, and so forth.

If there is an end goal to this blog, it is to add yet another component to my continued study of the Book of Mormon, and to present a view that has been shown previously by several leaders of the Church.

What you will not find here is discounting of evidences that don't fit into preconceived paradigms.  What you will find is evidence that proves the Book of Mormon to be true from a physical, cultural, and spiritual point of view.