February 2016

Joseph Smith’s ‘fiery flying serpents’ error.

As every student of the Book of Mormon knows, 2 Nephi 24 is a direct and exact copy (among twenty-one chapters of Isaiah, copied complete with translation errors and Middle English words inserted into the text), of Isaiah 14, as it appears in the Bible (KJV). Joseph Smith has Nephi include Isaiah’s words: “Rejoice not thou, whole Palestina, because the rod of him that smote thee is broken; for out of the serpent’s root shall come forth a cockatrice, and his fruit shall be a fiery flying serpent.” (v.29, italics added). (Claimed to have been recorded by Nephi, about 559–545 BCE).

Isaiah also mentions a fiery flying serpent in Isaiah 30:6. “The burden of the beasts of the south: into the land of trouble and anguish, from whence come the young and old lion, the viper and fiery flying serpent, they will carry their riches upon the shoulders of young asses, and their treasures upon the bunches of camels, to a people that shall not profit them.” This chapter was not copied into the Book of Mormon. Note that Isaiah’s use of the term is clearly figurative.

The following, relating to an incident involving Israelites in the wilderness, is claimed to have been written some forty years earlier by Nephi (about 592–591 B.C). “And he did straiten them in the wilderness with his rod; for they hardened their hearts, even as ye have; and the Lord straitened them because of their iniquity. He sent fiery flying serpents among them; and after they were bitten he prepared a way that they might be healed; and the labor which they had to perform was to look; and because of the simpleness of the way, or the easiness of it, there were many who perished.” (1 Nephi 17:41. Italics added).

Joseph Smith had obviously already read, and later used, several chapters of Isaiah in his Book of Mormon, but he muddled the text when having Nephi mention the wilderness experience. Isaiah’s fiery flying serpents were not real but the Lord’s serpents were (supposedly) actual – and not once did God claim they could fly.

Deuteronomy 8:15 reviews the claimed original occurrence: “Who led thee through that great and terrible wilderness, wherein were fiery serpents, and scorpions, and drought, where there was no water; who brought thee forth water out of the rock of flint.”

The record of the actual event reads thus in Numbers 21:6 & 8. “And the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died. …And the Lord said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.” God’s fiery serpents did not fly.

The ‘wilderness years’ were around 1459-1419 BCE. Isaiah lived circa 690 BCE. Nephi’s words were supposedly recorded about a hundred years after Isaiah wrote them. The usual question asked is of course: how could Smith ever have translated Isaiah from Nephi’s writings through his hat and come up with the KJV of it? Of course, he couldn’t, and didn’t; he just concocted (in this case, simply copied) everything. However, it is likewise apparent that he often got things entirely wrong, and here, ‘flying’ snakes are yet another classic example of a Smith error.

It is of course a huge mistake and further evidence of Smith’s hoax. The faithful will no doubt claim ‘flying’ to be additional information of the revelatory kind, as delusion knows no bounds. Once you choose to believe something to be the case, the brain will automatically block the truth for you. To realise the delusion, you must be brave enough to question and then only accept verified evidence in support of any and every claim. You cannot have faith in fiction.

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The House of the Lord

Joseph Smith and his Temples

Where exactly was ‘Zion – The New Jerusalem’ to be built,

Ohio, Missouri or Illinois?

Notes from The Mormon Delusion Volume 5 and the Doctrine and Covenants. (D&C Section dates provided are consistent with the recent ‘Joseph Smith Papers’ and some may differ from those published in the current D&C. See: The Mormon Delusion Volume 5

Temple 1. Kirtland, Ohio. Dec 1832. Dedicated on 7 March 1836 – but incomplete.

Temple 2. Independence, Jackson County, Missouri. Announced 1831. June 1833 – plans drawn up – but never built.

Temple 3. Spring Hill, Missouri. (Adam-ondi-Ahman). Site dedicated by Brigham Young October 1838 – but never built.

Temple 4. Far West, Missouri. April 1838 announced. Site dedicated by Brigham Young 4 July 1838 – but never built.

Temple 5. Nauvoo, Illinois. 1839. Dedicated on 30 April and 1 May 1846 – but incomplete. The link for the new temple completed in 2002.

_____________________

Doctrine and Covenants (D&C) Section 29.  Dated: September 1830. Fayette, New York. (See: The Mormon Delusion (TMD) Vol. 5:154-155).

In D&C 29:8, we have what is essentially a prophecy. Here, Smith has Jesus explicitly state “the decree hath gone forth from the Father that they shall be gathered in unto one place on the face of this land.” This was September 1830 and the ‘one place’ turned out to be Kirtland, Ohio, where Smith resided from 1831-1837 and where they built a temple. Smith also started talking about Zion being established at Independence, Missouri, as early as 1831. Then, in 1834, Smith led ‘Zion’s Camp’ on a march to redeem Zion (Independence) but they were unsuccessful. Dejected, they returned home, with many suffering from malaria along the way.

Following Smith’s temporary stay in Far West during 1838, in 1839 they settled in Nauvoo, Illinois, but by the time they had almost completed a temple there, Smith was killed (1844); they were driven out and started heading west. Had Section 29 been a real revelation and instruction from God via Jesus – would he not have been better off saying that they should immediately travel across the plains to Utah in order to save all the trouble and bloodshed?

Despite revelation and prophecy on gathering and building a temple in Independence, and Brigham Young even talking about possibly still doing so many years later when in Salt Lake City, to this day no such gathering and no such temple have materialised. In the 1860s, Brigham Young prophesied the Civil War would continue until the land was emptied so the Mormons could return to Missouri. (See: Tanner: Mormonism – Shadow or Reality? 190-192). It did not – and they did not.

D&C 36 has seven verses and is dated 9 December 1830. Fayette, New York. (See TMD 5:168). Here, Jesus says “wherefore, gird up your loins and I will suddenly come to my temple. Even so. Amen.” Even so – he suddenly didn’t – and to this day he still hasn’t. Smith claimed Jesus appeared in the Kirtland Temple in 1836 but of course that cannot be substantiated. Many were drunk and ‘saw’ all manner of things. In any event, it was a claimed ‘visit’ and not the second coming; something which is always inferred from such claims as recorded in the above D&C reference.

D&C 42. 9th & 23rd February 1831. Kirtland, Ohio. (See TMD 5:185 on). In v.62 the Lord explains that “…it shall be revealed unto you in mine own due time where the New Jerusalem shall be built”. In the book of Revelation, which the Mormon Church accepts as scripture, the writer, who claims to be ‘John’, explains that he knew “the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God” (Rev 3:12) and that he “saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven…” (Rev. 21:2), but that is not exactly the Mormon take on their New Jerusalem.

The saints anticipated building their Zion there and then; they expected to complete it and for the Saviour to return during their lifetime. Today, almost two centuries later, the city of Zion – the New Jerusalem, along with its temple, still don’t exist and Jesus remains conspicuous by his absence, despite Smith’s countless revelations, prophecies and promises that it would all happen in that place – and in that generation.

In v.62 the Lord explains that “…it shall be revealed unto you in mine own due time where the New Jerusalem shall be built.”

Result: The location for Zion, the New Jerusalem, and the temple “to which all nations should come” was explicitly to be Independence, Jackson County, Missouri (Sec. 57). It has never been built.

D&C 57:2. Wherefore, this is the land of promise, and the place for the city of Zion.
57:3. And thus saith the Lord your God, if you will receive wisdom here is wisdom. Behold, the place which is now called Independence is the center place; and a spot for the temple is lying westward, upon a lot which is not far from the courthouse.

Unfortunately, it was never to be and left Joseph Smith with yet another monumental ‘prophecy failure’ problem. A couple of years after the prophecy, in June of 1833, Joseph Smith drew up ‘plans’ for the layout of Zion at Independence, Missouri. Smith even laid a cornerstone for the temple on 3 August 1831, but that was about as far as things ever went.

By 1841, it had become clear that there was a major problem in having this prophecy fulfilled and Smith was obliged to have his God further explain Himself. After all the promises that had been made, what could God say? Section 124 was recorded on 19 January 1841. Today, in respect of v.45-55, it includes this in the Section heading: “The Saints are excused from building the temple in Jackson County because of the oppression of their enemies.” Note the Church explains that they were ‘excused’ from building the temple at Independence – yet it had been promised to them as part of the bigger promise; Zion – the New Jerusalem.

It turns out that when God made his ‘promised land’ promises, He was in no position to do so; it was never going to happen, due to strong opposition against Smith and his ways. Yet Smith had his God make the promises, despite the fact that God should have already known what would happen. It calls Smith’s God into question, but if we accept the idea that God could and would never make such an error, that only leaves Smith to answer for the mistake. (TMD 5:226).

On 20 July 1831, D&C 57:1-5 confirmed the City of Zion would be for “an everlasting inheritance” and yet on 19 January 1841, in D&C 124 they are ‘excused’ from building it. Something in there just doesn’t sit right and as ever, there is only one remotely possible explanation. Today, the main Mormon Church still doesn’t occupy the area; two schisms, the Church of Christ (Temple Lot) and the Reorganised Church (Community of Christ) have churches in that location.

In September 1832, Jesus gets straight to confirming the building of Zion in D&C 84:2-3. “…the city of New Jerusalem …shall be built, beginning at the temple lot, which is appointed by the finger of the Lord, in the western boundaries of the State of Missouri, and dedicated by the hand of Joseph Smith, Jun., and others with whom the Lord was well pleased.”

There is no denying either confirmation of the prophecy or the exact location. (Missouri, NOT Illinois). Jesus goes even further and confirms that it will be built “in this generation” (v.4).

That undeniable prophecy was not fulfilled. Following Smith’s death and the legal battles that ensued between various schisms, the lot was eventually split between three organisations and the only temple standing there is owned by the RLDS (Community of Christ). All the Mormon (LDS) Church has there is a visitor’s centre.

D&C Section 97. 2 Aug 1833.
Regarding the proposed temple in Zion (Independence, Missouri). If they build it and don’t defile it, then his “glory shall rest upon it” (v.15).

“And the nations of the earth shall honor her, and shall say: Surely Zion is the city of our God, and surely Zion cannot fall, neither be moved out of her place, for God is there, and the hand of the Lord is there” (v.19). That was wishful thinking on the part of Smith. If that really was the Lord speaking, He couldn’t have been more wrong.

A couple of months later, the saints were driven out, never to return. Zion, along with its temple, was never built. Zion cannot ‘fall’ as it doesn’t exist. (See D&C Section 101 & TMD 5:340 on).

The Kirtland temple was dedicated on 7 March 1836 – but within two years Kirtland had become virtually abandoned by the saints. (See TMD 5:333). Following the ‘Kirtland Safety Society’ banking scandal, Joseph and Hyrum Smith fled Kirtland in the night, in fear of retribution from countless angry saints, including several of the apostles, who had lost everything. Some new schisms emerged following the debacle. Warren Parrish formed ‘The Church of Christ’ and took control of the Kirtland temple and other Church assets. The new church was incorporated in 1838 and Martin Harris, led by Warren Parrish, excommunicated Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon who had relocated to Far West, Missouri. (See TMD Vol. 2:58 & Vol. 3:42-44).

Confusion over who owned what went on for years following the death of Joseph Smith in 1844, with several factions laying claim to the Kirtland temple. At one point, it was used to house livestock during the winter, with milk cows in the basement and sheep on the ground floor. Eventually, a probate court in Ohio sold the temple, which had reportedly cost some $40,000 to build (that’s somewhere close to $1,000,000 in purchasing power today), to pay off some of the outstanding debts still owed by Joseph Smith’s estate. Eventually, legal ownership ended up with the Reorganised Church, now Community of Christ, which owns and operates the Kirtland temple today.

D&C 101. December 1833. Kirtland.

D&C 101:17. Zion shall not be moved out of her place, notwithstanding her children are scattered.
18. They that remain, and are pure in heart, shall return, and come to their inheritances, they and their children, with songs of everlasting joy, to build up the waste places of Zion—
19. And all these things that the prophets might be fulfilled.

Zion will not be moved and the saints will return to their inheritances – along with their children. The promises made here have been repeated several times and were never fulfilled. All those people have long since departed this world – and so have all their children. Today, it is a new and different world where everyone who is now living was born long after that period. Almost two centuries later, no one has returned, Zion has not been built, and there is no (Mormon) temple there.

The next verse nails it down completely – v.20: And, behold, there is none other place appointed than that which I have appointed; neither shall there be any other place appointed than that which I have appointed, for the work of the gathering of my saints—

Despite supposedly coming directly from the Lord, that idea didn’t last very long.

D&C 116. 9 May 1838. Near Wight’s Ferry, Spring Hill, Daviess County, Missouri. (Added to the D&C in 1876).

This is the full text of Section 116 which has just one verse: “Spring Hill is named by the Lord Adam-ondi-Ahman, because, said he, it is the place where Adam shall come to visit his people, or the Ancient of Days shall sit, as spoken of by Daniel the prophet.”

In Mormonism, this little gem is the basis for a belief that this is where Adam and Eve lived and raised their family after being driven from the Garden of Eden. This would mean that everything from Adam until the time of the biblical flood transpired in North America.

The idea that Spring Hill was where God placed Adam as the ‘first’ human being is today so absurd a concept that no one other than faithful and believing Mormons could or would ever even begin to consider the idea a remotely plausible supposition. (The same is true of course for the global flood myth, with Noah and his family setting off from America, yet the Mormon Church teaches it as factual). We now know the general origin and distribution of humankind across the globe, both in terms of species and time frame, beyond reasonable doubt – and no amount of faith can overcome the truth of data which spans tens, if not hundreds of thousands of years.

Adam-Ondi-Ahman was yet another location where the Lord wanted his saints to organise a Stake and build him a temple. He seemed to like beautiful temples being built for him before the people arriving were even settled and making a proper living for themselves. Smith recorded the following: “Adam-ondi-Ahman, Missouri, Daviess county, June 25, 1838. A conference of Elders and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was held in this place this day, for the purpose of organizing this Stake of Zion, called Adam-ondi-Ahman.” (History of the Church (HC). Vol. 3 Ch. IV).

A ‘temple square’ site was chosen and dedicated in October of 1838 by Brigham Young, accompanied by Smith, Heber C. Kimball and others. Once again, the temple was never built. This time, they never even managed to lay cornerstones. This was the third temple to be prophesied and planned but it was never constructed; it was certainly not a case of ‘third time lucky’; the saints were ordered out of the settlement within days of the temple square dedication.

In the link to ‘Temple 3’ above, the Church claims the temple would have been at the centre of a new city named after the son of Adam, the ‘City of Seth’ – it was never built. On 7 November 1838, the saints were given just ten days to leave the area and they moved to Far West, Missouri; a move that turned out to be equally as disastrous as trying to settle at Spring Hill had been – regardless of what name Smith said the Lord gave it.

D&C Section 115. 26 April 1838. Far West, Missouri.

Far West, where Smith now was, suddenly became the focus of the Lord’s attention. Not surprisingly, it is now here that he wants yet another house (temple) built. They must begin work in the summer; in fact 4th July would be a good day to start; but they must build it just the way he wants it – or it will not be accepted. Smith’s God was ever fussy and always very harsh.

Brigham Young dedicated the temple site on 4 July 1838. That was the day Sidney Rigdon delivered his infamous Independence Day Oration (not to be confused with his equally infamous ‘Salt Sermon’), neither of which did the Church any favours at all.

A year from today (v.12), which will be 26 April 1839, they should re-commence laying the foundation and then there is to be no stopping until the temple is finished. “Thus let them from that time forth labor diligently until it shall be finished, from the cornerstone thereof unto the top thereof, until there shall not anything remain that is not finished.”

The temple was never built and the saints were driven out the following spring (1839). The Mormon Church repurchased the site in 1909 and the original cornerstones are now under glass cases for tourists to view. (See link to ‘Temple 4’ above for details). This link includes an assertion, using typical Mormon propaganda, that five apostles and others (at great risk to themselves) visited the site a year later ‘in fulfilment of prophecy’, on 26 April 1839. They actually secretly crept in just after midnight and didn’t hang around very long. The prophecy claimed all twelve would start a mission from that spot on that day. They didn’t, and less than half turned out – in the middle of the night (See TMD 5:413). That hardly constitutes fulfilment of prophecy.

Note that the Church felt they had to somehow try to ‘make’ the prophecy come true. The same thing happened when Erastus Snow and Benjamin Winchester were asked to go to Salem (See TMD 5:390), among other equally strange examples of ‘making’ prophecy come true, in order to cover Smith’s otherwise entirely unfulfilled predictions. In this case, the Church neglects to include the fact that the prophecy was specifically that from 26 April 1839 on, they should “…labor diligently until it shall be finished, from the cornerstone thereof unto the top thereof, until there shall not anything remain that is not finished.” Other than placing a stone on top of one of the cornerstones, the apostles did nothing on that day (or rather, night), and nothing has been done since. Other than the original corner stones, now encased in glass, all there is on the site today – is grass. That is prophecy most definitely unfulfilled.

D&C Section 124. 19 January 1841. Nauvoo, Illinois.

God wants yet another temple built. This was the fourth temple that the Lord had wanted built which was never completed. After Kirtland, God had wanted a temple in Zion (Independence) (TMD 5:224-5); Far West (TMD 5:401); Spring Hill (Adam-ondi-Ahman) (TMD 5:405-6); and now – Nauvoo. Although, this time, it was nearly finished before it was destroyed. The basement and ground floor levels were completed and used for a few weeks before the saints started moving west.

In 1999, the Mormon Church built a modern temple on the site which, inside, is nothing like the one God instructed Smith to build, although the outside is similar. It was completed in 2002.

Why was the interior not the same as the original? Times change and things had moved on in Mormonism. But why did God ask for temples to be built differently at Kirtland and in Nauvoo? The new ‘endowment’ was introduced in Nauvoo. It was not performed in Kirtland because it was yet to be invented, so naturally that temple was not designed to accommodate it. Smith invented it in the Nauvoo period; thus the interior of the new temple was entirely different.

For the very first time, God tells Smith there is no baptismal font on the earth where the saints can be baptised for the dead. There was no mention of that in Kirtland – or for that matter, for any of the other temples that were prophesied and planned yet never constructed. This is a new idea. Why did God not have a font included in the Kirtland Temple or the other planned temples? Whatever Smith’s God had previously been thinking, He now suddenly, and out of nowhere, requires a baptismal font. It is also interesting that God repeats Himself several times in typical ‘Smith revelation’ fashion in this section – a tell tale Smith error. (See D&C 124:29-36 and TMD 5:429-30. See also TMD 5: The Final Analysis – Part 2, ‘In other Words’ pp. 484-85; and Part 3, where ‘The Mormon God says the Strangest of Things’ in the D&C).

Despite everything God wanted and promised, Smith was killed when the temple was only half complete. Following the succession crisis, when Brigham Young succeeded in gaining the most followers, mob violence increased and the saints were forced to prepare to leave the city. Young encouraged members to finish the temple and although it never was fully completed, part of it was used for three months, from December 1845 to February 1846. It was dedicated once the interior of the first floor was completed (that means the ground floor in the UK), on 30 April and 1 May 1846.

When the saints left the area in September 1846, vigilantes vandalised the temple. Various attempts at leasing or selling (asking up to $200,000) failed, until it was finally sold for a pittance ($5,000) in 1848 by Church agents – to a Mormon. That may sound like a good investment but later he sold it at a loss. It was soon to be gutted by fire and then hit by a tornado in 1850 before being demolished completely a few years later.

Three times, God says that after the time allotted to build the temple, baptisms for the dead outside the temple will not be acceptable. He actually states that if they do not do these things by the end of the appointed time, “ye shall be rejected as a church, with your dead” (D&C 124:32).

Well, the fact that they didn’t even come close confirms the Mormon God (or at least Smith) had no idea what would happen next. Although it was used and later dedicated, the Nauvoo Temple was never completed. According to God’s ‘condition’ concerning His command remaining unfulfilled, He must have then ‘rejected’ Mormonism – and their dead; or it was just another false prophecy. Either way, Smith portrays his God as unknowing of future events that a real God should know and also as vindictive in the extreme. Smith’s God never did seem of much help to the Saints – he mainly appeared to castigate and threaten them, blaming them for everything that went wrong.

Is it just coincidence that Smith has God say this? – “And ye shall build it on the place where you have contemplated building it, for that is the spot which I have chosen for you to build it. If ye labor with all your might, I will consecrate that spot that it shall be made holy” (D&C 124:43-4). God chose the very spot that Smith had selected. What a coincidence. Holy ‘spot’ or not – the temple was destroyed.

God goes on to say that if they hearken to His voice, they will not be moved out of their place (v.45). If they don’t listen to God, or to Smith and his men, they will not be “blest”. The saints certainly appeared to try hard to accomplish what was required of them but they were driven out anyway. Did that mean they had not listened? God actually says that even if they build His house but do not do the things He says, “instead of blessings, ye, by your own works, bring cursings, wrath, indignation, and judgments upon your own heads, by your follies, and by all your abominations, which you practise before me, saith the Lord” (v.48). Were they really that bad? Of course not, but Smith was; the suffering and persecution of the saints can be traced directly back to the way he personally behaved and how he treated and tried to control people, not just in his Church but also the local community and government. The results were always inevitable.

When Smith introduced his Masonic based ceremony as the ‘Endowment’ to be received in Mormon temples, he claimed it was “received as a revelation from God.” (HC 5:1-2). It was hardly that. For complete coverage of Mormonism and Masonry, including a word by word comparison of the endowment, with Masonic ritual as it was practiced at that time, see TMD Vol. 3, Sec. 3. Smith quickly rose through Masonic ranks in days and just as quickly incorporated many of the rites into his new Endowment, which he then claimed was given to him by his God. The Endowment, which was at first performed in rooms above the printing office, as with Masonic ritual, was not initially made available to women. It later became a bargaining chip with Smith’s wife Emma.

When the Nauvoo Temple was opened for business, Brigham Young was still formulating ideas for the new ceremony which Joseph Smith had asked Young to complete. This would continue for several decades (See TMD Vol. 3: Sec. 3).

The following entry from the ‘Nauvoo Temple Journal’ gives an idea as to how far Young had got at the time. The following was new detail on that day. “Last evening an arrangement was made establishing better order in conducting the endowment. Under this order it is the province of Eloheem, Jehovah and Michael to create the world, plant the Garden and create the man and give his help meet. Eloheem gives the charge to Adam in the Garden and thrust them into the telestial kingdom or the world. Then Peter assisted by James and john conducts them through the Telestial and Terrestrial kingdom administering the charges and tokens in each and conducts them to the vail where they are received by the Eloheem and after talking with him by words and tokens are admitted by him into the Celestial Kingdom….” (Nauvoo Temple Journal, 13 December 1845). See TMD 5, Appendix C, for more details of the Nauvoo style Endowment.

D&C 104:39. This is (supposedly), actually God speaking about why He wants a temple to be built at Nauvoo: “Therefore, verily I say unto you, that your anointings, and your washings, and your baptisms for the dead, and your solemn assemblies, and your memorials for your sacrifices by the sons of Levi, and for your oracles in your most holy places wherein you receive conversations, and your statutes and judgments, for the beginning of the revelations and foundation of Zion, and for the glory, honor, and endowment of all her municipals, are ordained by the ordinance of my holy house, which my people are always commanded to build unto my holy name.” This very weird single sentence is far from grammatically correct and it makes no sense whatsoever. A real God would surely at least speak with eloquence – and make some sense. This was clearly just Smith’s rambling (and completely failing) attempt to sound like deity. It is so obvious that you really do have to cling to a deep delusion in order to accept it. Read it again and ask yourself if you could ever believe in this God that Smith so obviously invented.

The location for Zion, the New Jerusalem, and the temple “to which all nations should come” was explicitly to be Independence, Missouri (D&C Section 57).

The Church never did build the City of Zion – the New Jerusalem or a temple at Independence, Missouri. Two Mormon schisms now occupy some of that area.

D&C 84:2-3: “…the city of New Jerusalem … shall be built, beginning at the temple lot…”  v.4: “in this generation.”

No temple was ever fully completed and the New Jerusalem never was built – anywhere, in any generation, despite all the prophecy and five different temple locations being established before the Saints finally fled to the Salt Lake valley. Smith and his God got everything wrong.

Copyright © Jim Whitefield, March 2015.

November 2014

Two new essays were issued by the Mormon Church during October. As usual, these have been buried, undated, in the ‘Gospel Topics’ section of lds.org without any further public comment or explanation – although the media has picked up on many of the new and controversial disclosures. They are just ‘there’ so the Church can claim more ‘transparency’ when questions arise. The problem is that the new essays, as ever, still cloud some issues with half truths and deliberately omit some of the important lies and deceptions of the past.

Meanwhile, a letter confirming that many essays exist under the ‘Gospel Topics’ section of lds.org has now been distributed to leaders and read to members throughout the Church. But, it makes no reference whatsoever to the thirteen essays that have been issued during the past year or so, so why did they bother? The reason is simple – and all too obvious. The letter (copy below) refers members to just one ‘faith promoting’ essay: “Gospel Learning: Seek Learning by Study and Also by Faith”, which, it claims “explains principles of seeking truth”, in order to condition members’ minds before they may possibly locate and read the new and devastating material now hidden in plain sight among almost two-hundred-and-fifty other essays.

As my friend, Robbie Bridgstock (author of ‘The Youngest Bishop in England’), commented, the letter and essay keep coming back to “faith”. This is Robbie’s emotive comment to me:

“…there is a great play on seeking truth through church related processes, i.e. scripture, prayer, obedience, the words of prophets – always ‘inside’ the LDS faith, but in each case it keeps coming back to FAITH; faith in what they already know, faith in eternal truth, faith (hope) in their eternal future (where all will be revealed!), FAITH, FAITH, FAITH! What about the faith, trust, confidence, hope and expectation of all those who doubt and are searching beyond or behind the facade of Mormonism? They are still actually living-out or enabling themselves – yes, even actualising the principle of faith. To me, it is the self same principle in operation –trusting self, trusting science, trusting others, or even trusting God, to lead them back, or out of Mormonism, when enough solid evidence is discovered. To me, this is a real dynamic and cogent faith.”

I am sure Robbie didn’t expect me to quote him verbatim, but he is of course quite right and his frustration is evident, eloquently expressed, and more than justified. This made me think more deeply about the attempted control over the minds of members as the Church attempts to stop the outflow of so many of the faithful when they learn the awful truth about their once beloved Church. What does the Church have left? The trouble is that there is nothing left and the Church is doomed to continue losing members (and therefore income), and eventually become yet another mediocre has-been religion like the Methodists and Presbyterians which have long been in steady decline.

Admission of lies and cover-ups of the past and a plea for faith that it doesn’t actually matter is not good enough for anyone who thinks beyond ‘BLIND faith’ and employs even a little ‘reason’. The letter brings members back to “faith” in whatever the Church wants them to accept and thus away from science and the discovery of evidence based truth. In the referenced essay, which naturally has “faith” in the title, in five short paragraphs, the word faith appears no less than seventeen times. The essay uses the word ‘reason’ in conjunction with faith three times, but cleverly prompts members: “If from our limited perspective reason appears to contradict faith, we continue our study while steadfastly holding to our faith.” Read that again! Our reason is “limited perspective” (rather than reliable), so if it “appears” to contradict our faith, we should continue our study (of gospel material – not science; that word doesn’t appear), while “steadfastly holding to our faith.” “Appears to contradict”? What about when it really does contradict? This is carefully constructed and deliberate brainwashing. Keep the faith.

Reason, then, may not just ‘appear’ to contradict faith; in many cases, within Mormonism, it positively does contradict it and it is then that faith must be questioned, rather than reason. At a recent Church conference, one speaker advised members to “doubt your doubts” before doubting faith, in another ploy to control the minds of the faithful. As ‘reason’ must ultimately be employed in order to determine anything, if indeed it really is a “limited perspective”, then reason must be equally as inadequate in sustaining faith in something that has no evidence to support it. What it should say is that when reason contradicts faith, then faith must, must, be questioned, as faith is only valid where evidence does not exist. When reason confirms validity of evidence against something that previously required faith in order to believe it, then it is faith that must be abandoned – not reason. I will come back to that at the end of this update. Look out for “Faith is the substance of things hoped for…”

Why did the letter not inform members of the ‘transparency’ contained in the new essays? They claim transparency yet clearly hope most members will never actually look for it. This is real brainwashing on a global scale. Why didn’t they give a list of all the new essays? Is this more ‘milk before meat’ – read this and it will soften the blow when you discover what we have been lying about all these years? The one essay that is referred to, actually states that learning is a “commandment” – twice. Seek by learning; but science and empirical evidence are not mentioned; just “eternal truth” (and we know what that implies), by Study (which apparently does require “reason” among other things), by Faith, and The Word of God – and guess what, there is a promise – knock and it shall be opened. Uh-huh. This is a link to the one and only essay that members are referred to in the letter.

Gospel Learning.

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Note the rider that leaders may want to direct members to ‘Gospel Topics’ “when detractors spread misinformation and doubt.” They know very well that much information now available is not misinformation; and it ignores the fact that the Church itself has now published essays admitting to many of the things that the so-called ‘detractors’ have been drawing attention to for years. Some contain the very same information that a number of scholars (the ‘September Six’ for example) were excommunicated for, as they revealed hidden aspects a few years ago.

The Church coming a little cleaner (but still manipulating the truth and desperately trying to paper over the cracks), on the issues covered by the various essays published over the last year or so, does nothing for Mormon leaders’ credibility and everything to confirm that Smith created a complete hoax, entirely based on lies and deception from the start. It would be impossible to address all the problems created in these two essays here so the following will be limited and for more information, I would refer readers to ‘The Mormon Delusion Volume 1 – The Truth Behind Polygamy and Secret Polyandry’ which covers empirical evidence of the truth of this area in extensive detail.

Polygamy Essay 1: Plural Marriage in Kirtland and Nauvoo.

Truth and integrity are two words the Church still doesn’t seem to understand or apply when they feel they have no choice but to at least admit to some of the things they have hidden and lied about for so long. The essay claims the Lord “…did not give exact instructions on how to obey the commandment.” Had polygamy been a genuine revelation, of course the Lord would have laid out clear ‘rules’ for his plan, but they have to claim there were no “exact instructions” because they cannot remotely explain (or justify) Joseph Smith’s paedophilia or bigamy; and “…participants were asked to keep their actions confidential” translates to, ‘they were to deny and lie about it.’ The essays do not explain how any God could or would ever condone the many now admitted lies, including quoting false scripture (old D&C 101, since removed), about a doctrine. Any truth, not that there ever was any, ends where lies begin.

Apostles, including Lorenzo Snow and John Taylor, lied outright when in England, convincing new converts that the rumours about polygamy were just malicious lies. Converts, Fanny Stenhouse and Mary Burton, heard these talks first hand, which were recorded.

This is an extract from The Mormon Delusion, Volume 1:34-35:

As late as 1850, Apostle John Taylor, later to become the third President of the Church, and who had regularly denied the rumours of polygamy in his sermons abroad, in a tract published in England, insisted that Mormons did not believe in or practice plural marriage:

“We are accused here of polygamy… and actions the most indelicate, obscene, and disgusting, such that none but a corrupt and depraved heart could have contrived. These things are too outrageous to admit of belief… I shall content myself by reading our views of chastity and marriage, from a work published by us containing some of the articles of our Faith. ‘Doctrine and Covenants,’ page 330… ‘Inasmuch as this Church of Jesus Christ has been reproached with the crime of fornication and polygamy, we declare that we believe that one man should have one wife, and one woman but one husband, except in the case of death…’” (A tract published by John Taylor in 1850, page 8; found in Orson Pratt’s Works, 1851 edition).

Apostle John Taylor was not telling the truth. He later became the prophet and President of the Church. At the time of his published denial of polygamy in 1850, John Taylor himself had already married eleven polygamous wives who had at that time, already borne him eight of the total following children:

Leonora Cannon, married 1833, 4 children
Elizabeth Kaighin, married 1843, 3 children
Jane Ballantyne, married 1844, 3 children
Anna Ballantyne (Allen), married 1844, separated 1845, divorced 1852
Mary A. Oakley, married 1845, 5 children
Mary A. Utley, married 1846
Mary Ramsbottom, married 1846
Sarah Thornton (Coleman) married 1846, div 1852
Lydia Dible (Granger Smith), married 1846
Ann Hughlings (Pitchforth), married 1846
Sophia Whittaker, married 1847, 8 children
Harriet Whittaker, married 1847, 3 children
(Dialogue: Spring 1985:23. LDS Church Authority and New Plural Marriages, 1890-1904. D. Michael Quinn;  Also: Quinn 1994:597).

Apostle Taylor lied. He had in fact been involved in, as he described it, “…the most indelicate, obscene, and disgusting, such that none but a corrupt and depraved heart could have contrived. These things are too outrageous to admit of belief…” and yet he preached that “…we believe that one man should have one wife, and one woman but one husband.” On the strength of Taylor’s witness as an apostle of the Lord, many women emigrated from England to America, only to discover upon their arrival in Salt Lake, that he had lied. A life of bondage in polygamy awaited many of them. The notion that any God would approve, is preposterous.

A reading of the first few chapters of ‘Tell it All’ by Fanny Stenhouse will confirm the secrecy and denials in England regarding polygamy, including recollections of talks given by Taylor in which he denied its existence. When I first learned of this, I felt just as Mary Burton must have felt when she expressed herself so eloquently and yet so distressingly in a letter to Fanny Stenhouse when, after all the rumours and denials, they were faced with the publication of the revelation in the Millennial Star.

“…Who could believe that Orson Pratt or Lorenzo Snow knew nothing of Polygamy? And yet they denied it in the most solemn way. And, oh, Sister Stenhouse, think of the Apostle Taylor calling God to witness his truth when he proved from the Book of Covenants that there was no such thing as Polygamy: and all the while he had himself five wives in Salt Lake City! Oh, my! This is dreadful. Whether the doctrine is true or not, I can never believe that God would forgive all that abominable lying about it.” (Stenhouse, F. 1874).

[End of TMD extract].

The first essay goes on to try to excuse Smith’s actions thus: “The revelation, recorded in Doctrine and Covenants 132, states that Joseph prayed to know why God justified Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, and Solomon in having many wives. The Lord responded that He had commanded them to enter into the practice.”

Naturally, the essay does not tell the rest of the story from other Mormon so-called scripture. The Book of Mormon explains that the actions of David and Solomon were an abomination. But Smith wrote the BOM before he invented the ‘restoration’ of polygamy which covered up his adulterous affairs.

“For behold, thus saith the Lord: this people begin to wax in iniquity; they understand not the scriptures, for they seek to excuse themselves in committing whoredoms, because of the things which were written concerning David and Solomon his son. Behold David and Solomon truly had many wives and concubines, which thing was abominable before me, saith the Lord.” (Book of Mormon. Jacob 2: 23-24).

The Book of Mormon twice confirms the practice “abominable” and the D&C twice states that the practice was “justified” (see TMD Vol.1). Both refer to the wives of David and both are preceded by “Thus saith the Lord”. In a letter to Morris L. Reynolds dated 14 July 1966, Apostle LeGrand Richards said: “I am afraid I can’t adequately reconcile these two statements… If the one in Doctrine and Covenants 132:1 had omitted the names of David and Solomon, then I think I could reconcile the two statements.” (Tanner 1987:205). The essay does NOT mention this incredible (double) contradiction by the Mormon God.

No one can justify contradicting statements, especially when they are both purported to have come from God, prefixed by “Thus saith the Lord.” The notion is simply farcical. As it happens, the names of David and Solomon were not omitted, so not only could Richards not reconcile the statements, we have absolute and conclusive proof of Smith’s complete hoax right there in Mormon ‘scripture’. There is no argument left that can be made. Game over.

God, if one exists, is accepted as never changing; if something is an abomination, he cannot change his unchangeable mind about it later. It was not God; it was Smith who later changed his mind about it, in order to accommodate the perverse sexual behaviour he embarked on. The Church constantly excuses Smith and other past leaders as being ‘only human’ but they cannot use the same argument on behalf of their God when he says “Thus saith the Lord.”

In the essay, the Church admits Smith tried to persuade women to accommodate his sexual advances using an ‘angel with a sword, threatening to kill him’ approach. They try to cover up Smith’s first documented affair thus: “Fragmentary evidence suggests that Joseph Smith acted on the angel’s first command by marrying a plural wife, Fanny Alger, in Kirtland, Ohio, in the mid-1830s.”

Fragmentary nothing! No, Smith did not act on an angel’s command; he had yet to invent the angel with a sword idea. He did not marry Fanny, he had a well documented affair with her; and it was not  exactly the mid 1830s, he was eventully ‘caught in the act’ with Fanny, during an ongoing affair that had started in 1832-1833. Note the sly manipulation of half truths into a convenient less troublesome storyline in one sentence. That is the way Mormon leaders work. The Fanny Alger affair is further examined below.

The essay continues: “Several Latter-day Saints who had lived in Kirtland reported decades later that Joseph Smith had married Alger, who lived and worked in the Smith household, after he had obtained her consent and that of her parents. Little is known about this marriage, and nothing is known about the conversations between Joseph and Emma regarding Alger. After the marriage with Alger ended in separation, Joseph seems to have set the subject of plural marriage aside until after the Church moved to Nauvoo, Illinois.”

Back to that in a moment. Note the devious manipulation of the truth in this essay statement: “Joseph told associates that an angel appeared to him three times between 1834 and 1842 and commanded him to proceed with plural marriage when he hesitated to move forward. During the third and final appearance, the angel came with a drawn sword, threatening Joseph with destruction unless he went forward and obeyed the commandment fully.”

While Smith claimed (and backdated) the idea that an angel conveniently appeared between 1834 and 1842, the essay does not mention that the monogamy revelation (D&C 101, since removed), appeared in the 1835 Doctrine and Covenants and was in regular use to disavow polygamy for the next seventeen years, until the Church went public on polygamy on 28-29 August 1852, when the doctrine was first announced. At a special conference in Salt Lake City, over eight years after Smith’s death, the secrecy finally ended. Despite major inflow to the Church in 1853 and 1854, word started to penetrate to all levels of the Church. Many thousands then rejected polygamy and left the fold. By the end of 1857, despite many thousands of new converts, overall, there were over 13,000 fewer members than in 1854, a drop of over 19% in Church membership. (Statistics from Church Almanac 2006:652).

Also, no ‘sealing power’ was claimed until 1836, so where did Smith’s authority come from? Nothing fits, unless it is manipulated for convenience, and even then it is wishful thinking by the Church. It may well be that due to the unprecedented admission of such devastating historical evidence of lies and deception, that the already large stream of members leaving the Church will develop into yet another surge – a tide of devastated Mormons voting with their feet. Their Church is not only supposed to be true, its leaders are also assumed to be the epitome of integrity and beyond reproach. They are clearly not – and never have been.

If you can believe the Church spin on Smith’s ‘angel with a drawn sword threatening his life’ story, you will no doubt believe anything – but for many who leave the fold in disgust, discovery of that statement causes a defining moment – their final epiphany that the whole thing was indeed a complete hoax. The essay’s claim that Smith’s ‘marriage’ to Fanny Alger was in the “mid 1830’s” is another attempted misdirection, as Smith’s claims that an angel commanded him to enter polygamy, are confirmed as between 1834 and 1842. They hope readers will assume the first visit was before the Fanny Alger period. However, there was no marriage, her parents did not record approval and the ongoing affair was discovered and admitted (and forgiven by Emma), before the backdated period of Smith’s invention of the angel with a sword. In any event, it would be entirely impossible to convince any sane person that Smith getting caught in a barn, having his way with a sixteen-year-old housemaid, was the result of an angel threatening to kill him if he didn’t do it. To believe that to be the case, which is what the Church is now asking, does not require faith – it doesn’t even need a deep seated delusion – it takes complete and utter madness.

They don’t mention the fact that the ‘angel with a sword’ idea was first invented and shared when Smith used it on Zina Huntington in 1841, in order to finally convince her to marry him after she had denied his advances three times. She had by then married someone else. Even then, the devious Smith sent Zina’s brother to convince her about the angel and sword con rather than go himself. We could ask why the angel didn’t just go and explain it all to Zina in the first place. Smith used it again on Emily Partridge in March of 1843. What need would an angel even have for a sword? It is a purely human invention. Anyone can backdate a claim for convenience – and it had nothing whatsoever to do with the Fanny Alger affair.

So, there is no documented mention of an angel with a sword until long after Fanny Alger; no ‘fragmentary evidence’ that remotely credibly ‘suggests’ anything – no evidence that Smith ‘married’ Fanny or that her parents ever ‘consented’ at all; it is sheer conjecture, but there is well documented (and conveniently unmentioned) evidence of the affair, commencing in 1832-1833 – and the uproar it caused, including Emma later throwing Fanny down the stairs and out of the house when she may have caused Fanny to have a miscarriage. Think about it. If Smith actually had asked Fanny’s parents if he could bed her, surely he would have also sought Emma’s permission, especially if a sword wielding angel really had demanded he do so and would ‘run him through’ if he didn’t; and in a barn? It was an ongoing affair and he simply got caught.

Oliver Cowdery, Joseph Smith’s third cousin, one of his scribes and a witness to the Book of Mormon, couldn’t cope with Smith’s affair with the sixteen-year-old Fanny. In a letter to his brother, Oliver Cowdery commented on Fanny and Joseph: “in which in every instance I did not fail to affirm that what I had said was strictly true. A dirty, nasty, filthy affair of his and Fanny Alger’s was talked over in which I strictly declared that I had never deserted from the truth in the matter, and as I supposed was admitted by himself.” (Brodie 1963:182). Smith admitted the affair but there was never any mention of a ‘marriage’ during those early years recorded anywhere by anyone that I could locate. The Church is well aware of all that but now (for claimed transparency) chooses to reinvent history by manipulating the angel with a sword story. The Church has a long history of being devious and manipulative. Nothing has changed.

Cowdery paid the price for not lying for Smith and was later excommunicated. Among other things it was for “insinuating that the prophet had been guilty of adultery” (HC 3:16). That he actually was guilty did not seem to matter to Smith at all, so despite the faithful service he had given to Smith in so many areas, and despite the fact that he was Smith’s third cousin, Cowdery’s integrity cost him his membership in the Church. For Smith, Oliver Cowdery’s usefulness had ended, while his own sexual advances and activities continued and expanded.

For quite some time, Emma had no idea that Joseph was having an affair with Fanny. She reportedly found out by catching them together in their barn, when Joseph humbly confessed and was forgiven. Later, when Fanny was obviously pregnant, Emma threw her out. It happened when Fanny was “unable to conceal the consequences of her Celestial relationship”, according to Chauncey Webb, whose family offered to take Fanny in. This is not ‘fragmentary evidence’ from ‘decades’ later (hearsay); it is well documented, first hand, eye witness evidence, yet the Church chooses to ignore it and clutch at virtually invisible straws that are more convenient for their desired storyline. (See TMD Vol. 1 for much more on polygamy and polyandry that the Church still contrives to hide from its members).

The admission that Smith’s youngest conquest was just fourteen years old has reportedly already caused quite a stir among Church members – and the wider world as well. But once again, even then, only part of the truth is revealed. The essay claims “The youngest was Helen Mar Kimball, daughter of Joseph’s close friends Heber C. and Vilate Murray Kimball, who was sealed to Joseph several months before her 15th birthday. Marriage at such an age, inappropriate by today’s standards, was legal in that era, and some women married in their mid-teens. Helen Mar Kimball spoke of her sealing to Joseph as being “for eternity alone,” suggesting that the relationship did not involve sexual relations.”

Marriage at that age, although unusual, was indeed quite legal but the essay fails to mention, at that point (where, to claim ‘transparency’, it really must), that Smith was of course already married – and bigamy (and polygamy) were anything but legal – at any age. Smith’s lurid actions can never be excused by such devious misdirection. “Several months before her fifteenth birthday” is a blatant attempt to soften the fact that Helen was just fourteen years old when Smith got his hands on her. In trying to make Smith sound less of a paedophile by saying it was before her fifteenth birthday, rather than that she was just fourteen, the Church must think people are stupid. Additionally, the suggestion that it was for “eternity alone”, attempts to exclude the reality that Smith had sex with her – and he forbad her from attending weekly dances held at the Smith home – she had to stay home while her brother attended. They do not admit that Helen Mar Kimball herself later personally confirmed that she, seventeen-year-old Lucy Walker, and also sixteen-year-old Flora Ann Woodward, had sexual relations with Smith as his plural wives. (See Quinn 1994:639). Evidence of Smith ‘grooming’ another girl from an even younger age and more confirmed sexual relationships with several other wives appears in The Mormon Delusion Vol. 1.

The essay conveniently ignores Helen’s own admission as well as her personally recorded anguish “…he [Joseph Smith] said to me, ‘if you take this step, it will ensure your eternal salvation & exaltation and that of your father’s household and all of your kindred.’ This promise was so great that I willingly gave myself to purchase so glorious a reward…” Despite the essay’s weak attempt at covering up the sexual context, one should ask why it does not incorporate Helen’s own words which include:  “…no girl liked dancing better than I did…and like a wild bird I longed for the freedom that was denied me; and thought myself an abused child, and that it was pardonable if I did murmur. I would never have been sealed to Joseph had I known it was anything more than ceremony. I was young, and they deceived me, by saying the salvation of our whole family depended on it.” (Van Wagoner 1989:53 c: Lewis 1848:19). The essay is more than selective and deviously manipulative with many details it provides – and still hides.

In fact, not just one, but two of Smith’s wives were about fourteen years old. One of them was Helen and the other was Nancy Maria Winchester (who by my research was fourteen, but may have just turned fifteen). He also married three sixteen-year-olds, two seventeen-year-olds and two nineteen-year-olds. By the time the 1842 polygamy revelation was written down, Smith had married about thirty women. This included at least four sets of sisters, a mother and her daughter (who were both already married), and nine other married women. (See TMD Vol.1 Apx A & B for full details of Smith’s known wives and their families).

There are numerous nonsense statements in this essay, such as “Joseph Smith’s sealings to women already married may have been an early version of linking one family to another. In Nauvoo, most if not all of the first husbands seem to have continued living in the same household with their wives during Joseph’s lifetime, and complaints about these sealings with Joseph Smith are virtually absent from the documentary record. These sealings may also be explained by Joseph’s reluctance to enter plural marriage because of the sorrow it would bring to his wife Emma.”

Claiming “complaints about these sealings… are virtually absent…” is actually an admission that there were at least some very upset first husbands. One victim was Orson Hyde, whose wife, Marinda Nancy Johnson, was paired up with Willard Richards by Smith after Hyde was sent on a mission; that is, until Smith decided he wanted her for himself and he married her. The devastating story of Marinda is detailed in TMD Vol.1:146-151. The real explanation is evidenced by the several married women he seduced and Smith didn’t seem reluctant at all. He tried to seduce dozens of women; he ‘married’ well over thirty and was rejected by quite a few others whom he then threatened, should they ever expose him. Rejections came from Sarah Kimball, Sarah Pratt, Jane Law, Nancy Rigdon (to whom Smith wrote a love letter which fully exposed his advances, which he then had to admit), and at least fourteen others. (See TMD Vol.1 Ch. 6 – and Apx M for the text of the Nancy Rigdon letter). If it was his God’s will, why did these faithful women all refuse Smith and why the need to then threaten them?

It seems Smith just tried to seduce anyone he could. Add together the known ‘wives’ and the several ‘probable wives’, where there actually is what the essay earlier labelled ‘fragmentary evidence’, plus the known refusals and we find that Smith tried his luck with at least sixty-four women and probably many more. Reluctance doesn’t come into it. Joseph Smith was a well practiced con artist and the ‘angel with a drawn sword’ story sometimes worked on reluctant victims. He also told some women that God didn’t mind if they had a little fun – so they did. TMD 1 provides further fully referenced details of Smith’s antics and methods of seduction.

When I approached the Church during 2006-7, at a time when they perhaps thought that no one would ever know the truth, Church leaders confirmed to me personally that “polyandry was and is contrary to doctrine” and “those who participated would have to account for it.” Of course, that was long before the essays were considered. I provided evidence that Smith, Young and Kimball all practiced polyandry and that Young and Kimball had children by polyandrous wives (see TMD Vol. 1, Ch. 9), yet one General Authority had no idea polyandry had even been verified. I pointed out that doctrinally, Smith, Young and Kimball therefore forfeit their eternal salvation. With nowhere to go, having confirmed polyandry was contrary to doctrine, he said “It doesn’t matter; the Church is still true; Joseph still saw God and Jesus and still translated the Book of Mormon.” *

But the polyandry does matter – the new essay now openly admits that it occurred – and the Church can’t simply ignore inconvenient facts. They must be faced and dealt with. Naturally, the essay does not confirm that polyandry is contrary to doctrine, even though the Church confirmed it to me just a few short years ago, as to do so now would mean they also have to admit that doctrinally, Smith, Young and Kimball are all indeed doomed. Smith, and the others, did some terrible deeds; he did not see God and Jesus as claimed (see ‘The First Vision’ article on themormondelusion.com sidebar), nor did he ‘translate’ the Book of Mormon (see TMD Vol. 2). It is all fiction – all of it – and conclusively provably so.

Smith kept knowledge of most of his liaisons from Emma – and what ‘reluctance’ did Joseph show? He married over thirty women between 1841 and 1844 and Emma was apt to throw them out when she found out what he was doing with some of them in her house. Some of Emma’s married friends became Smith wives and she never knew about them. Following his death, Emma lied about her husband’s polygamy, pretending that it never happened – to the extent that even her children believed her. (More details in TMD Vol. 1).

There is so much evidence now confirming the Church has lied about everything from the start that the fallback statement: “it doesn’t matter; the Church is still true”, has more than worn thin. It really does matter; it matters a great deal, and the Church simply isn’t true. It cannot possibly be, no matter how much we would like it to be, as no God could or would ever be involved in or endorse such constant denials of (some now admitted) disgraceful duplicity and debauchery, lies and deception. There is much more nonsense in the essay and I would again refer the reader to TMD Vol. 1 where the subject is covered in detail.

Polygamy Essay 2: The Manifesto and the End of Plural Marriage.

“Like the beginning of plural marriage in the Church, the end of the practice was a process rather than a single event. Revelation came “line upon line, precept upon precept.”

Not until now has the cessation of polygamy been considered a ‘process’ rather than a single event. It is now admitted, simply because of abundant evidence that polygamy continued well into the twentieth century – even though the Church had committed to the government that it would cease the practice completely and immediately when the manifesto was issued. Now there is no choice but to face and admit the facts – although, even then, the new essay is somewhat more than economical with that truth and completely ignores important evidence.

In what is now ‘Official Declaration 1’ (OD1) in the D&C, Wilford Woodruff claimed charges of post manifesto polygamy were false: “…as President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, do hereby, in the most solemn manner, declare that these charges are false. We are not teaching polygamy or plural marriage, nor permitting any person to enter into its practice.” The new essay confirms otherwise, which means lies are canonized in scripture. In TMD 1:209, I coined the phrase: “You can pretend to live according to the law but you cannot hide all the babies.” I list well over a hundred children conceived and born to Mormon leaders’ polygamous (not first) wives, post Manifesto. Yet, the agreement with the government was that they would cohabit with only one wife each, post Manifesto.

The OD1 includes later notes from Woodruff in which he claims: “The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as President of this Church to lead you astray. It is not in the programme.” And “The Lord showed me by vision and revelation exactly what would take place if we did not stop this practice. If we had not stopped it, you would have had no use for … any of the men in this temple at Logan; for all ordinances would be stopped throughout the land of Zion.” … “I should have gone to prison myself, and let every other man go there, had not the God of heaven commanded me to do what I did do…” He meant that the government had seized Church assets and the only way to get them released was to issue the Manifesto.

Yet, in reality, he did not do “what the God of heaven commanded me to do.” The Manifesto was initially drafted by lawyers. Woodruff and the other leaders did not stop the practice at all. Woodruff himself entered a further plural marriage several years later. On 19 August 1897, the prophet of God, Wilford Woodruff, married his sixth wife, Lydia Mountford, some seven years after he had solemnly declared that God Himself had informed him (Woodruff) that it was against God’s will and that he intended to obey the law. He was ninety years old when he married Lydia, who was fifty-one years his junior, aged thirty-nine. He died just over a year later. He was as duplicitous as the rest – but the essay does not disclose any of that. (And no, marrying her ‘at sea’ did not circumvent the law).

The essay is honest enough to state that “Both President John Taylor and President Wilford Woodruff felt the Lord directing them to stay the course and not renounce plural marriage.” But then the later change of heart is ‘excused’ in the essay with “This inspiration came when paths for legal redress were still open. The last of the paths closed in May 1890, when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Edmunds-Tucker Act, allowing the confiscation of Church property to proceed.”

“…felt the Lord directing them” should equate to revelation, not just “inspiration” when paths were still open. This is more misdirection. What they do not mention is that John Taylor, as prophet, also declared that the principle would NEVER be taken from the earth. Some fundamentalists claim that it wasn’t and trace their practice back to a claimed but disputed Taylor revelation. And why was the Lord “directing them to stay the course” when he must have known it couldn’t happen? The essay stating that “this inspiration came” when paths were still open, is a very lame excuse for so-called prophets getting things very wrong. If they were prophets, the change of heart must have been their God’s change, otherwise it was not his ‘direction’ or even ‘inspiration’ – it was just wishful thinking, and they were indeed leading people astray – one way or the other. If polygamy was that important and expected never to be taken from the earth, why did God not simply have the Church locate to a suitable country where it could be practiced without interference – instead of Salt Lake? We know the leaders expected the second coming at any time, certainly by 1892, though the Church now denies it.

The essay claims “The Manifesto declared President Woodruff’s intention to submit to the laws of the United States. It said nothing about the laws of other nations. Ever since the opening of colonies in Mexico and Canada, Church leaders had performed plural marriages in those countries, and after October 1890, plural marriages continued to be quietly performed there.”

This statement implies that polygamy was actually legal in Mexico and Canada and it is left to readers to discover the truth, buried in a footnote, which admits that such marriages were just as ‘illegal’ in Mexico and Canada as they were in the United States, but the authorities there tended to turn a blind eye. That is not exactly in concert with the laws of those lands, Article of Faith 12 (or 13 for that matter), or obedience to the declared new laws of the Mormon God.

Heber J. Grant was the last polygamous Mormon apostle to become President, in 1918. He died in 1945. Grant also had three post Manifesto children by his third wife. Luckily for him and for the Church, he only had one surviving wife when he was called as President, so his crimes of the past simply passed by unnoticed. However, the fact is that after the Manifesto, by 1897, he felt incapable of obeying the law, and Grant himself recorded when he decided to start sleeping again with Emily, his third wife. In so doing, he violated the law of the land and although not enforced, the law of the Church and thus the absolute Law of his God.

Although not included in the published Manifesto, the leaders all knew their agreement with the government included cohabiting with only one wife, but of the big fifteen, Lorenzo Snow was apparently the only one to comply. He lived with his youngest wife, Minnie, who was forty-three years his junior. Grant himself referred to the ‘laws against cohabitation’ thus:

“I spent the night at Emily’s. I have not been living with Emily for a number of years on account of the laws against cohabitation, but I have felt for some time that it was not the right thing for me to fail to live with her as a wife and I have made up my mind to change my manner of living in this particular no matter if I do get into some trouble. I am sure that the Lord and my brethren will approve of my change, and I know that I will feel better satisfied with myself to say nothing of the better feeling that Emily will have to be treated in all respects as a wife.” (Heber J. Grant Diary 24 May 1897).

It seems an extreme of rationalisation to assume the Lord would approve, unless Grant knew full well that the Lord had nothing to do with the whole idea of the Manifesto in the first place. (See TMD Vol.1: Ch.14 for the full Manifesto story). He may well have felt satisfied, but in consequence of this decision, in 1899, Grant was arrested and entered a plea of guilty to the charge of unlawful cohabitation. He was fined $100. (Salt Lake Tribune 9 Sep 1899).

The essay admits leaders did not act in compliance with terms agreed with the government. “After the election of B. H. Roberts, a member of the First Council of the Seventy, to the U.S. Congress, it became known that Roberts had three wives, one of whom he married after the Manifesto. A petition of 7 million signatures demanded that Roberts not be seated. Congress complied, and Roberts was barred from his office.”

Mormon Church leaders were branded as liars and deceivers by Congress; their ‘word’ was unreliable in the extreme – and worthless. There was no honesty or integrity then – and there is none now; the same old tricks are being played out on the faithful in this essay, with half truths and excuses which would offend any God – or any moral mortal for that matter.

The essay mentions the ‘second manifesto’, issued by the sixth prophet, Joseph F. Smith, in 1904. This was to be a ‘watershed moment’ after which everyone would obey the law or be disciplined. Yet in 1906, the prophet himself fell foul of the law. The essay fails to mention that having issued the so-called second manifesto, despite his own public affirmation of obedience to the law in 1904, Smith, who was President from 1901-1918, had himself not only authorised many polygamous marriages, either personally or by proxy, but he had also consistently been illegally cohabiting with several wives of his own, ever since the 1890 Manifesto. He had fathered many children by five plural wives, post Manifesto, and he continued to do so after his 1904 statement. He actually had 13 children between 1891 and 1906, by five polygamous wives. (See TMD Vol. 1:224). The last one, born several years after he became the President of the Church, was to be his legal undoing.

Following the birth of Royal Grant Smith on 21 May 1906, born to Mary Taylor Schwartz who was wife number six, Church President, Joseph F. Smith, was arrested. The charge could have been much worse but was reduced to that of unlawful cohabitation with four women in addition to his lawful wife. When the case went to trial on 23 November 1906 Smith pleaded guilty and was fined $300 which was the maximum penalty permitted under the law. (Deseret Evening News 23 Nov 1906; Salt Lake Tribune 24 Nov 1906). The Prophet of God admitted to being guilty of knowingly and wilfully breaking the agreed law of the land, the Church Articles of Faith, and violating the laws of the God he represented and had spoken for just two years earlier. This really does disqualify someone from being a true prophet but the essay ignores this and many other equally damning issues completely.

There is so much more nonsense and meaningless excuses in these two essays that another book could be written about the continuing conspiracy to deceive members through cleverly manipulated and sparingly covered detail in further so-called ‘admissions’ of Mormon history. Make up your own mind about these things, but if you had known all this detail – and that discussed in earlier essays, prior to joining the Church, would you have even considered it?

Faith is the substance of things hoped for…

The (now discarded) Mormon ‘Lecture First of Faith’, as it was originally known (See TMD Vol. 5), cites Hebrews 11:1 in this manner. “Now faith is the substance [assurance] of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” The word ‘assurance’ does not appear in the KJV but does now appear in the American Standard Version instead of ‘substance’, and it also has ‘conviction’ rather than ‘evidence’. This seems logical, as there can be no ‘evidence’ of things not seen. That surely is the whole point of faith – it exists only as long as there is no evidence to support (or refute) the thing you have faith in. Once evidence (of either persuasion) is available, faith in the matter is rendered redundant. … In the final analysis, only evidence counts. (TMD Vol. 5:17).

The concept that: “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” has bothered me greatly, as “faith” and “evidence” are two words that are entirely incompatible. One can only exist when the other is absent. The incompatibility and absurd claim bothered me so much, that (supposed scripture or not), in TMD Vol.5:23, I took the liberty of saying that I think Hebrews 11:1 might more appropriately be rephrased this way:

“Faith is the unquantified anticipation of things hoped for, the unsubstantiated conviction of things not seen.” (Jim Whitefield). And I defy any rational thinking person to argue with that.

Only when there is absolutely no evidence for something can ‘religious faith’ be called upon to believe in it. That is the very basis of religion. (The word ‘faith’, in a secular context, has an entirely different meaning and can be replaced with other words). Where and when empirical evidence becomes available – religious faith is at once obsolete in respect of that matter.

Just as “atheism” describes “an absence of belief” in deities,
So “faith” describes an absence of “evidence” for something.

Such is the case, for example, regarding the pseudoscience of creationism vs. evolution. The Mormon Church recently confirmed continued belief in both creationism and no death before 6,000 years ago (see earlier updates), while the Pope has just announced that he now understands God did not have a magic wand and that the big bang and evolution are true. He made that admission in light of compelling and overwhelming evidence that is stronger than any other scientific theory (and I am sure, if you have read my earlier notes, you know that in science, ‘theory’ does not mean ‘hypothesis’; it simply describes the ‘explanation’ of ‘facts’ that have been verified and established as true through extensive and ongoing observation and testing).

Once conclusive evidence is established which contradicts something that someone (or an organisation) previously required faith to believe in, then that faith is obsolete and redundant. They must accept the factual information – just as the Pope has had the courage to do. To continue to assert faith and belief in something that has been proven not to be the case, as the Mormon Church so clearly has, when the evidence against the belief is so conclusive, is not just irrational, it is completely delusional – so much so that the Mormon Church has effectively signed its own death warrant. Future leaders, who realise what damage has been done, will be hard pushed to find a way out of the hole that has been dug for them. They are well practiced at obfuscation and misdirection but ‘creationism’ instead of evolution and ‘no death before 6,000 years ago’ are two steps too far, one hole too deep, and lies that are far too obvious to ever recover from – and their God can’t help them now.

* Finally, for those who expect full disclosure, whilst I have no desire to embarrass men who once claimed to be my friends, and I would rather not have included this, I felt obliged to reveal who the GA’s were in TMD Vol.1. This is the substance of page 108, with a few words added for clarification.

“My first approach to the Church regarding my devastating, albeit accidental, discovery of polyandry, was to Apostle Jeffrey R. Holland who replied in writing: “There is much that can be said on this subject, there are some things we don’t know and therefore can’t be said…” (11 Aug 2006). [In response to the question “What is the official Church position on polyandry?” – Apostle Holland answered on behalf of the Church via a member of the 1st Quorum of Seventy who confirmed]: “It was and is absolutely contrary to Church doctrine.” “Those who participated would have to account for it.” (Elder Kenneth Johnson of the 1st Quorum of Seventy (now emeritus), in a telephone conversation with the author, 8 September 2006). With no definitive answer from the General Authorities, following almost a year of waiting for a promised response: “…it may well be that you and I will have to wait until we stand face to face beyond the veil of death to obtain a complete understanding of purported events and associations.” (Elder Kenneth Johnson of the 1st Quorum of Seventy, in correspondence with the author, dated 7 August 2007). [A year after asking], in April of 2007, the Church (Jeff Holland through Ken Johnson), had asked for more time to research my findings on polyandry, as: “…it is not easy to find or validate information such as this without conducting meticulous research.” The promised response regarding the results of research concerning what comprises much of the evidence presented in the following chapters on polyandry is still awaited. As I was no longer receiving replies to letters sent to Kenneth Johnson, in June of 2008, I wrote once again to Apostle Jeffrey R. Holland, requesting the promised results of Church research and also an answer to my questions. To date, I have not received a reply. Jim Whitefield – September 2010” (TMD Vol. 1:108).

It later became clear from other ex Mormons who had approached Jeff Holland before I did (and who had similar experiences with him), and also from apologetic articles I then discovered, that polyandry had already been fully evidenced and documented, exactly as per the evidence I had submitted, so clearly Holland lied about the Church undertaking further research on my behalf and never did intend to respond. I can only conclude that Church leaders will bluff, lie (for the Lord?), and ultimately ignore such problems and hope they will eventually go away.

Jim Whitefield. Copyright © November 2014.

October 2014

“…we know that there was no death on this earth approximately 6000 years ago.” Mormon Chronicle (Citing: The Joseph Smith Foundation – July 2014).

Further to my notes of July 2014, this year’s Mormon ‘Adult Sunday School Manual’ included lessons confirming belief in a literal Adam and Eve and the biblical creation story –

Lesson 3. The Creation.

Lesson 4. Because of My Transgression My Eyes Are Opened.

– and also confirming belief that the biblical flood was a reality:

Lesson 6. Noah … Prepared an Ark.

The Joseph Smith Foundation has compiled and published confirmation of Mormon Church continued belief in creationism, a literal ‘Adam and Eve’, and outright claims from ten prophets and dozens of scriptures that there was ‘no death’ prior to 6,000 years ago in this article. Did dinosaurs die before the fall of Adam?

This lengthy compilation of so much Mormon nonsense, confirming ‘no death’ before Adam (6,000 years ago), finally places the Church at the point of no return, once and for all. Published by The Joseph Smith Foundation in July 2014, this self-condemning article comes at a time of unparalleled scientific understanding. It includes the following statement:

“…we know that there was no death on this earth approximately 6000 years ago. This is taught by the Old Testament, New Testament, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price and as mentioned by at least 10 Presidents of the Church in this last dispensation. All of these witnesses testify that the Darwinian assumptions claiming millions of years of natural selection on this earth prior to the Fall are false. But, say many, “We have determined that evolution is a fact and therefore the Prophets and the scriptures are in error. We need to leave these statements in the past. If we keep teaching a literal Fall, we will destroy faith.”

This is followed by a statement by Spencer W. Kimball (late twentieth-century prophet) which attempts to ‘anchor faith’ in the fairy tale. But it won’t – and they are right, it has indeed been “determined that evolution is a fact” – and ultimately it will quite rightly “destroy faith” in now proven Mormon fiction. “All of these witnesses testify…” is not evidence of fact; it is just evidence of a repeated meme, unfounded in reality – and nothing more. Note the phrase “Darwinian assumptions” which is designed to throw extreme doubt on evolution, in an age when it has been proven beyond all conceivable doubt. There then follows an outrageous statement that Darwin’s claims “are false”, without a single shred of evidence provided as to how or why this could possibly be the case. Evolution was not just a wild guess; it was a sound discovery, subsequently backed up by decades of further research by Darwin and many others. That research continues to this day when several different scientific disciplines have cohesively confirmed the facts over and over again.

Evolution has long since become fully fledged scientific theory, supported and substantiated by more evidence from more disciplines than any other theory ever discovered. To be a Mormon, you are now obliged to believe in proven fiction. You don’t have to ‘believe’ in science; you just have to understand it. That is the difference. The fact is that whilst Mormon Church claimed “Darwinian assumptions” have long been solidly proven scientific reality (and remember, the word ‘theory’, in science, means the ‘explanation’ of those facts – not ‘hypothesis’), ten prophets and all the scriptures were indeed entirely undeniably wrong and the Mormon Church has nothing left in defence of its continued outrageous deception.

Members must either knowingly willing have faith in obvious fiction or face the long proven facts. Take a trip down the Mormon rabbit hole with this article and then, if you haven’t already done so, walk away from the hoax and embrace the truth that science has so exquisitely provided. Such an abundance of similar ‘opinion’ from so-called scriptures and prophets does not prove creationism; it provides conclusive ‘evidence’ that a succession of false prophets just repeated the legends of the past (which themselves had their roots in the belief systems of earlier cultures), and that they were and are all absolutely ‘wrong.’ Ergo, the Church is founded on fiction rather than fact and cannot possibly be true – or led by ‘real’ prophets.

The article does prove one thing; they have all the evidence they need, yet Church leaders are deliberately perpetrating a conspiracy to deceive by perpetuating false claims – whilst zooming off to Church in vehicles propelled by fossil fuels derived from life forms that died many millions of years ago. The idea that there was no death before six-thousand years ago offends every related branch of science – not just evolution. It is way beyond delusion – it is the absolute epitome of Mormon madness. It is inconceivable that in the long term the Church can survive whilst continuing to promote proven fairy tales. New generations will be taught and understand the scientific truth and members will continue to vote with their feet. As I have always advocated, in the end, fact trumps faith.

It is ironic that the article doesn’t even address, let alone attempt to scientifically answer, the question in the title – “Did dinosaurs die before the fall of Adam?”  It is actually ignored, apart from the unsubstantiated ‘catch all’ claim – “…we know that there was no death on this earth approximately 6000 years ago.” The evidence, of course, conclusively proves otherwise.

Prior to this damning article condensing Mormon and biblical mentions of creationism, the late Prophet, Ezra Taft Benson, seemed unable (or unwilling) to even face the problem, as recorded by his grandson, Steve Benson:

“A local right-wing Mormon activist sent a letter of protest to my grandfather, complaining that my pro-evolution cartoons were a roadblock to God’s plan for returning constitutional control of the schools to his people. Unable to bring me to my senses, she implored him to silence me.

My grandfather gave me a call, asking for an explanation. I told him that so-called “scientific creationism” was nothing more than religion masquerading as science and that if Mormons, or anyone else, wanted to teach it in the public schools, they should confine it to a course on comparative religions. By way of information, I added that the official Mormon position on evolution had historically been neutral. He asked me to provide him with proof of that in writing, saying he would consider not only sending a reply to the Mormon complainer, but also think about making it available to inquiring church members in the form of an official public declaration. I did as he requested, but never heard back from him. Months later, I asked him about the status on the matter. He said the church had decided to do nothing, since publishing the facts would only cause more controversy.”

See: 2think.org list of notes on evolution here.

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April 2014

During March, two new ‘essays’ appeared from Mormon Church leaders. One reiterates the continued stand against “Same-Sex Marriage”; a view which reflects complete ignorance of the scientific evidence now available regarding same sex attraction being hard-wired into the brains of some six to eight percent of humans (and a number of other species) and is entirely lacking in compassion and understanding; but it comes as no surprise.

LDS ESSAY: Same-sex Marriage.

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NOAH: The other essay is so absurd that had it been issued today (April 1st), I would have wondered, was it an ‘April Fool’s Day’ joke? But no, it confirms a continued belief in ‘Noah’ and the fictional story of a global flood in which god killed every living being (including babies), and creature on the planet (except those that lived in water – apparently, although it would have been impossible for freshwater fish to survive the mix of salt water, so where and how did Noah house all the freshwater life?), apart from eight people and several million species of animals – somehow.

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The essay also reconfirms the Mormon belief that Adam and Eve were the very first humans, just six thousand years ago. “The scriptures list him [Noah] as the 10th patriarch from Adam.”

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Due to some of the comments I will make, and although I have mentioned it before, it is important to fully clarify (for anyone who still doesn’t understand the difference between a ‘theory’ and ‘scientific theory’), the exact difference between the two concepts.

“Science is a systematic and logical approach to discovering how things in the universe work. It is derived from the Latin word “scientia,” which translates to knowledge. Unlike the arts, science aims for measurable results through testing and analysis. Science is based on fact, not opinion or preferences. The process of science is designed to challenge ideas through research. It is not meant to prove theories, but rule out alternative explanations until a likely conclusion is reached.

A scientific theory summarizes a hypothesis or group of hypotheses that have been supported with repeated testing. If enough evidence accumulates to support a hypothesis, it moves to the next step—known as a theory—in the scientific method and becomes accepted as a valid explanation of a phenomenon.

When used in non-scientific context, the word “theory” implies that something is unproven or speculative. As used in science, however, a theory is an explanation or model based on observation, experimentation, and reasoning, especially one that has been tested and confirmed as a general principle helping to explain and predict natural phenomena.

Any scientific theory must be based on a careful and rational examination of the facts. In the scientific method, there is a clear distinction between facts, which can be observed and/or measured, and theories, which are scientists’ explanations and interpretations of the facts. Scientists can have various interpretations of the outcomes of experiments and observations, but the facts, which are the cornerstone of the scientific method, do not change.” From livescience.com (emphasis added).

For example, we know ‘evolution’ is an absolute fact that happened, and continues to happen (the fact of evolution), and the ‘theory of evolution’ is the scientific explanation of the facts.

Here’s a thought; if oceanic life survived the flood, why did this god have to kill almost all the flora and fauna just to get rid of most of the humans that he had created? Another thought; one third of the host of heaven apparently followed Satan and two thirds followed God (and Jesus). Yet by the time of Noah, almost all those previously ‘faithful’ people who were now on Earth had become so wicked they may as well have followed Satan in the first place? Yet everyone who followed after Noah was somehow okay? This same god is claimed to have managed to kill off the first born of Egypt, without affecting the rest of the people and animals. But then, in Mormonism, the world had to be ‘baptised’, so we must suppose that murdering many billions of creatures, in addition to millions of humans, including children and babies, was just part of this god’s ridiculous modus operandi.

If, by now, you have not realised that if the Mormon god exists, and this was indeed all part of a plan, he is indeed all that Richard Dawkins proclaimed: “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.” (The God Delusion, p.31). And, his so-called plan is so lame, it is not worthy of an entirely insane human, let alone a supposed god. The flood concept defies a number of different and well established scientific disciplines (not to mention engineering problems for a ship of that size made of wood), on every level. The idea is not just implausible or even improbable – it is scientifically completely impossible – period. The idea that ‘with god, all things are possible’ fails when it contradicts established laws of science which cannot be broken. If a god does exist, they are his own unbreakable laws.

The essay mentions the ‘generations’ from Adam, thus also confirming the continued belief in another clearly proven myth, ‘Adam and Eve’, who lived some six thousand years ago (at a time we know there were already some five million humans around the planet). This god did not create the cereal crops we know today either. Humans cultivated those (genetically modified if you like), from wild grasses, several thousands of years before the claimed time of Adam. God told Adam “In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread” (Genesis 3:19). This concept was confirmed by Joseph Smith in Moses 1:5. But, if Adam was the first human (regardless of when), he would have had no cereal crops from which to make any bread, no idea what bread even was, and would have had no idea how to cook. Fire wasn’t tamed by humans for a very long time. Once you start to investigate such claims, the nonsense becomes clearer and clearer. There is no end to the evidence against such ludicrous claims as Adam and Eve, or the flood being a reality.

Creationism is thus also confirmed in Mormonism, despite the fact that evolution by natural selection is a proven fact – as solid an aspect of fully evidenced scientific truth that anyone could ever imagine existed. Despite this, the Mormon Church has reaffirmed its faith in more proven fiction by issuing this new essay.

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Unless the Church wishes to change (or deny) Joseph Smith’s pronouncements, made in the Doctrine and Covenants, it is stuck with the belief that the entire ‘temporal existence’ of this planet extends to just seven thousand years, from beginning (of life), to end, including a yet to come one-thousand year millennium. Such beliefs as a ‘six thousand year old earth’, ‘Adam and Eve’, and ‘Noah’s flood’, are, in the modern world, beyond delusional – they are indeed completely insane, just as Richard Dawkins says. They may as well reaffirm the biblical belief that the world is flat and stationary (Dan 4:10-11; Matt 4:8, 1 Chron 16:30, Psalms 93:1), as scientifically, these myths and legends really are now that silly.

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Yet, the Mormon Church just confirmed faith in fiction, over an (even reluctant) acceptance of fully evidenced scientific fact. If Mormon leaders had had the integrity to admit that the above stories are either fictional or allegorical, they may have stood a chance of saving their Church from its ultimate and inevitable demise. No wonder members are leaving the Church in droves. They are expected to have faith in and believe the equivalent of ‘Alice in Wonderland’, in an age when we know the truth ‘without a shadow of doubt’ (a phrase Mormons often use in their testimonies). Mormons will still repeat “I know the Church is true”, by rote, without stopping to actually ‘think’ about established evidence which leads everyone else to understand that, whether Mormons like it or not, or they are willing to believe it or not, they ‘know for an absolute fact that the Mormon Church cannot possibly be true.’ New converts, in the more enlightened parts of the world, will continue to be few and far between, and Mormon congregations will continue to dwindle as the truth is now so obvious and easily accessible.

D&C 77:6. Q. What are we to understand by the book which John saw, which was sealed on the back with seven seals?

  1. We are to understand that it contains the revealed will, mysteries, and the works of God; the hidden things of his economy concerning this earth during the seven thousand years of its continuance, or its temporal existence. (Emphasis added).

LDS ESSAY: Noah.

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A number of Mormons I know, understand and accept evolution; they realise ‘Adam and Eve’ could not have been the first humans, just six-thousand years ago; and they know that a global flood, about four-thousand-three-hundred years ago, was a physical impossibility. I wonder how they will cope with the cognitive dissonance that is bound to occur when and if they see this essay. The likelihood is remote at present because, as usual, the Church has just buried their essays in a general list that most members will never actually see – unless they start to question and go looking.

Mormon youth are taught the Mormon belief system at Church and in Seminary – with no evidentiary support whatsoever. There isn’t any; they are taught to live by faith. Meanwhile, they are taught in school, college and university, that a ‘scientific theory’ is an explanation of some aspect of the natural world that has been substantiated through repeated experiments or testing. They will learn the truth (and the proof) behind the theory of evolution by natural selection, DNA and the mapping of the tree of life, the germ theory of disease, the theory of gravity, the theory of relativity, astrophysics, geology, palaeontology, microbiology, laws of thermodynamics, and much more, complete with up-to-the-minute evidence in support of our latest understanding in each area. They will know the true age of the planet and how long we have been here. They will study the history of civilisations that pre-date the Adam and Eve myth by thousands of years; at the same time realising that none of these cultures cater for a ‘flood gap’ (or later repopulation by entirely different people descended from Noah), and that the biblical flood simply could not and did not happen. It will put an end to their faith in fiction.

The various scientific disciplines combine (and none of them contradict each other), to paint a very accurate picture of life, our planet, and the universe that Mormonism must accept and adopt, or it will ultimately fail to retain its youth who will easily see through the hoax. Mormon youth will comprehend that science is the reliable bedrock of knowledge and understanding. Nonsensical religious stories, formulated in ignorance, many thousands of years ago, cannot stand up to scrutiny in the modern world. Myth and legend is quickly and easily recognised and rejected – except when it is wrapped up in so-called scripture, when it may just be accepted ‘on faith’ by those still prepared not to ‘think’. But it will become harder and harder to do so.

When faced with indisputable evidence against Mormon claims, the Church still resorts to the argument that the science must be flawed – when it really isn’t; it becomes more solid by the minute. The following is taken from this month’s Mormon Church magazine for its youth:

False Idea: Some things in the Book of Mormon are refuted by current scientific evidence, and the accounts of how it was translated are inconsistent, so Joseph Smith must have made it all up or copied it from somewhere.

Where It Leads (Big Lie): The Book of Mormon was a big lie and Joseph Smith was not a prophet, so stop associating with the Church.

The Truth: Science affirms many things in the Book of Mormon and the “evidence” against it is flawed. But the most important evidence for it is the witness of the spirit telling you it is true and that Joseph Smith was a true prophet.” (New Era, April 2014).

Note the incredible and unsubstantiated off-hand statements that “Science affirms many things in the Book of Mormon” (it doesn’t confirm anything in the book at all), and that “the “evidence” against it is flawed”, whilst providing not a single word establishing exactly what is affirmed, or indeed, how or why extensive evidence against the book is flawed. In reality, evidence against the book (and most other things Mormon) is overwhelming. (See any of the five TMD volumes). The idea that “the most important evidence for it is the witness of the spirit” is simply insane, when any such ‘feeling’ is contradicted by concrete scientific evidence to the contrary.

See: ‘True or False’ for more nonsense in the rest of the article, inlcuding some valid reasoning, which is then manipulated to suit the Church position; including the idea that for Education: “A saint … seeks learning by study, and also by faith. Education … enables one to discern truth from error, particularly through studying the scriptures.” The brainwashing continues. You can’t learn anything by faith in proven fiction – you can only learn from established and scientifically verified facts. Faith is (unwisely) used to believe what someone else claims when evidence is absent. When evidence becomes abundant, such as with the flood, Adam and Eve, and evolution, integrity demands you must change your position. Faith that those ideas were factual, must then be laid aside. The Church is asking members to continue to have ‘faith’ in the opposite of evidenced ‘facts’, and that is not a valid (or healthy) option. Having made the wrong choice about them (due to the Bible and Joseph Smith), the Church has now decided to press on with the delusions rather than face and accept the truth. They will pay a huge price for that mistake. For Mormon youth, it would be far better for them to study the mountain of scientific evidence that has accumulated regarding false Mormon teachings, rather than blindly follow their leaders’ advice to believe myths and legends that have all been completely destroyed by that very evidence.

The catch-all statement that science (evidence against the Book of Mormon) is flawed and that the spirit is the best ‘evidence’, guides Mormon youngsters away from science and the indisputable facts, to a reliance on wishful thinking. Irrespective of the claim that “science affirms many things in the Book of Mormon”, the fact is that nothing in the Book of Mormon is supported by science (tangible evidence) at all. Everything that is testable is fully refuted by science, everything. See: The Mormon Delusion Vol. 2, for more. Nowhere will you actually find any independent, impartial, documented, peer reviewed, scientific evidence in support of the Book of Mormon (or any other Mormon) claims, as there is none whatsoever.

There are many books and articles available explaining all the scientific ‘flood’ problems that need to be considered. This is just one: Problems with a Global Flood.

Mormon problems are exacerbated even further by the continued belief, confirmed in the Encyclopaedia of Mormonism, that the Garden of Eden was in what is now Jackson County, Missouri. Thus, all humans, from Adam, through to the time of the flood, resided in America. Noah’s ark left from there, ending up somewhere in the Middle East, where there were no humans before that time. For this to be the case, we would expect to find no evidence of any humans anywhere outside the Americas, until after the time of the flood. Abundant evidence from across the globe proves conclusively that this is not the case at all (and the science is not flawed). The premise that Noah ‘set off’ from America – along with the flood, Adam and Eve, and creationism, are declared as the truth by the Mormon Church. Yet we know for an absolute fact, that none of the above can possibly be true.

Perhaps the Mormon Church would like to explain why their stand that Eden was in Missouri conflicts with the Bible and also Joseph Smith’s Inspired Revision of the Bible (Moses 3:10-14).

Genesis 2:10. And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads.

  1. The name of the first is Pison: that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold;
  2. And the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium and the onyx stone.
  3. And the name of the second river is Gihon: the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia.
  4. And the name of the third river is Hiddekel: that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates.

With the best will in the world, you cannot scientifically (or even logically) equate Havilah (Saudi Arabia and Yemen), Ethiopia, Assyria and the Euphrates (Middle East), with Missouri in America. Eden is of course also fictional, but from the information in the Bible, which Joseph Smith did not alter, the closest it has been placed to America is possibly Turkey.

See also, the magnitude of additional problems caused by Apostle Jeff Holland’s proclamation that after the flood, America, “The promised place was set apart. Without habitation it waited for the fulfillment of God’s special purposes. …the Lord began almost at once to repeople the promised land. The Jaredites came first…” (A Promised Land, The Ensign, June 1976). (Emphasis added). Holland didn’t stop to think that by claiming there was no one in the Americas after the flood, before the Jaredites, then Lehi and company, that for this to be true, all Native American DNA must support that premise and prove decendancy from a single source group that migrated from Israel just a few hundred years BCE. Yet modern day Native American DNA does no such thing; it traces back to eastern Asian origins many thousands of years before the claimed flood. That science isn’t flawed either. (Scroll down to ‘Book of Mormon and DNA Studies’ note under ‘February’ below for further details).

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On 14th March 2014, Westminster Magistrate’s Court in London, England, heard a fraud case which lasted a full day, brought against Thomas S. Monson – as sole owner of the ‘Corporation’ that is the Mormon Church. Tom Phillips, ex Stake President (who has had the ‘second anointing’ or ‘calling and election made sure’, therefore, technically he cannot be excommunicated), brought the case on behalf of Steve Bloor and Chris Ralph (both former Bishops). All three men are still members of the Mormon Church. (For further information, see the links below from 4th February and 7th February). The magistrate deferred judgement until the following Thursday (20th March), when he withdrew the summonses.

Church lawyers argued for costs against Tom, but this was rejected by the magistrate, who also instructed that Tom’s own costs be paid from central funds as the case had been brought by the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service). The gist as to why the summonses were withdrawn by the court is that it had not been shown that Monson is on record as personally declaring (testifying) that the clearly fraudulent claims listed are actually ‘true’. The lawyers argued that they were merely ‘beliefs’. None of the Church leadership were there to explain what the Church does teach as ‘true’ and everything was left to lawyers who are not Mormon and have no idea about what the Church actually claims to be true. Several things came out of the full one day hearing. ‘Beliefs’ of the Mormon Church can no longer be considered to be claimed as ‘facts’ – lawyers claimed that the Church doesn’t teach its ‘beliefs’ as ‘facts’. (The Book of Mormon is only ‘believed’ to be an historical document – it is not claimed as a matter of ‘fact’, etc). That will be news to most members of the Mormon Church.

Priesthood leaders are clearly not needed to represent the Lord’s Church any longer; instead, it is now lawyers who make pronouncements on behalf of the Church. Tithing is voluntary and optional rather than a ‘commandment’, despite the fact it has always been taught as a commandment. You can’t hold callings or attend a temple without paying it and you won’t get to the Celestial Kingdom, risking separation from family forever if you don’t pay. Does that sound voluntary?

For an analysis of the achievements of Tom Phillips’ case against Thomas S. Monson, here is a link to Steve Bloor’s blog concerning the case.

 

25 March 2014

John Dehlin posted this link on facebook yesterday (24 March 2014); and unsure of why it was worth a “wow” from him, I took the time to review it. It is a one hour presentation and these days I never usually spend a whole hour on anything Mormon. I can’t make out if Dehlin’s reference to Jon McNaughton (the Tea-Party’s painter) is intended as an insult or a compliment. Like many others, I still can’t fathom Dehlin’s motives clearly.

“Wow. Jake Hilton is Jon McNaughton in oral form….and he’s coming to an LDS fireside near you.”

The ‘Book of Mormon Evidence Conference’ (updated 23 November 2013) opening sequence is very professional and promises ‘archaeological evidence’, ‘geographical evidence’, ‘genetic evidence’, historical evidence’, ‘scriptural evidence’ and ‘prophetic evidence’. That should indeed be worth a “wow”, if indeed, after all these years (and the abundance of incontrovertible evidence against the remotest possibility of the book being a true account of a real people), we are to be treated to new discoveries of peer reviewed evidence in each area, obtained through the scientific method. Not that I held out much hope.

The emphasis is on strengthening youth, as they are “lost and confused” and leaving the Church. They must hold to the iron rod and get through the mists of darkness (quoting the BOM). Hilton of course doesn’t mention the fact that Joseph Smith plagiarised that whole dream sequence from his own father’s account of the very same dream he heard from when he was about six years of age. (See: The Mormon Delusion, Vol. 2. Ch. 9). “Leaving in droves; apostasy is happening right now in the Church today.”

Amazingly, Hilton quotes non-Mormon, Ken Ham, – the biggest idiot creationist in the world, recently made to look a complete fool by Bill Nye. Sixty percent of young adults are not Church active and eighty-eight percent of youth will deny their faith in Christianity by graduation. What is the solution in Mormonism? The iron rod itself – the word of God. All kids have to do is keep reading the BOM over and over and apply its principles. However, once people leave the Church, they don’t want to come back – having fallen into sin and transgression. I think that translates to ‘having discovered the truth and rejected the lies’. The notion that members who leave the Church ‘fall into sin and transgression’ is ever popular in Mormonism, and of course, ever absurd.

Hilton compares Hebrew and Roman ‘foundations’ to show the Hebrews were on the right track and the Romans got it all wrong. He confirms creationism as true and that the first man and woman “from whom we are all descended” were Adam and Eve. “If ever there is a theory, a philosophy, an idea that is presented to you that does not square with the scriptures, you reject it! Throw it out the window and don’t look back.” Right there is the reason people should reject Mormonism, if not religion in general. If science doesn’t fit with scripture, reject the science. Clearly, when science proves something as fact, it is the prior held belief that needs attention. But religion says, never mind the facts, stick with the fiction – rely on the delusion. It’s comfortable, warm and fuzzy.

Marriage is between a man and woman only. He condemns philosophy completely as a foundation for anything useful and makes absurd parallels about ‘worshipping’ sports stars. Oh, and it’s called ‘American IDOL’ for a reason! We make idols of men instead of god (apparently). For a supposedly up to date presentation, that’s a little outdated as an argument. People today do understand the difference between worshipping a god and admiring sports and film stars – they are not as stupid as Hilton tries to make out. And the photo he shows is of a BYU game where the majority of adoring spectators in the picture are undoubtedly members of the Mormon Church.

Unbelievably, Hilton then rounds on evolution and condemns it as “only the theories of men.” He clearly hasn’t studied any of the science surrounding it, or understood that it has long been a proven fact and not just a ‘theory of men’ as he claims. Someone should teach him that whilst ‘a theory’ may be a hypothesis, all ‘scientific theory’ has moved beyond that, consisting of facts established through peer reviewed evidence which is accepted by the scientific community. The ‘theory of evolution’ describes the process and thus why it is true. Evolution is an established scientific fact. Evolution is not something you have to have ‘faith’ in or ‘believe’ in – it is not debatable; you just have to understand it. It is a fact and as real as anything we know. Hilton should watch Cosmos, among many other things. The original hypothesis has been verified over and over through several different scientific disciplines that each confirm the other, leaving the fossil record as a kind of unneeded bonus – the tree of life has been well mapped – and is added to almost daily. Here in England, you can get a free copy from the BBC or Open University. It is now unquestionable science that you cannot “throw it out the window and don’t look back” just because it “does not square with the scriptures.” If science is right, then scripture is wrong.

Quoting a school text book on biology, he objects to us being described as animals related to earth worms. If he understood the wonders of science and how DNA and RNA show how everything is related, he would of course have to take a different view, so I can only assume he avoids all the evidence. We actually know more about evolution than we do about space-time curvature (gravity). And we are related to earth worms – as well as every other living thing on the planet – whether we like the idea or not.

Hilton claims organic evolution is “Satan’s chief weapon in this dispensation.” In my books, I state that despite what leaders have claimed in the past, the modern Mormon Church hasn’t made a stand about evolution (despite the fact that it is taught at BYU), because to do so (either way) would cause far too many problems for the Church. Yet here we are, with a definitive stand against scientific facts that cannot be disputed. If Church leaders persist with this stance, that alone will ultimately kill the Church. Well, unless that is, yet again they eventually declare that earlier leaders got it all wrong and admit that of course evolution is a fact and the Adam and Eve story is just a fable. In today’s world of scientific ‘understanding’ (not on faith or belief), the Church cannot and will not survive without accepting the facts. Even the Pope accepts evolution as a fact, and he represents a Church that grows by more members every single year than the Mormon Church has in total.

Hilton then disparages President Obama as “the first gay President” because he has come out in favour of gay marriage. The fact that Obama is a Democrat won’t help there, as most Mormons in America appear to be Republican, despite the fact the Church claims not to have political sway with members. He admits that Salt Lake City “has become the most popular homosexual city in America.” Then, following three slides with one word on each: “Warning”, “Graphic”, “Images”, he shows some tame pictures of the gay pride march in SLC from June 2013. He described them as “disturbing”. This is because over five hundred members of the Church marched in support of it.

He also disparaged Obama for declaring “We are no longer a Christian nation; we are also a Jewish nation, a Muslim nation, a Buddhist nation, a Hindu nation and a nation of non-believers.” Hilton didn’t like the all-embracing love and compassion of his own President, who is in fact Christian. He went on to say that meant we are no longer a nation that believes in one God but a nation that believes in many gods. That has to be one of the most ignorant statements I have ever heard. If the Church persists in such divisive commentary, it is more than doomed. And it is one reason why people are rejecting such religions as Mormonism.

Hilton wants America to be a ‘Christian’ nation only. That’s despite the fact that it was never set up under any god; church and state were supposed to have remained separate. Just because someone decided to put ‘One nation under God’ on US currency in the 1950s, does not mean the Mormon Church can claim exclusivity for themselves or even all Christians. Obama got it right; it is a nation for everyone. Hilton certainly knows how to offend Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus, as well as non-believers. Does he have a clue as to how bigoted (and unchristian) this kind of rhetoric is? He seemed to think that the date on which Obama said this was ‘significant’ for some obscure reason. It was April 6th – the date Mormons (incorrectly) believe was Christ’s birthday, because Joseph Smith claimed it. Is Jesus now upset with Obama, despite the fact that he is a good Christian?

And Hilton expects to ‘retain’ the youth and young adults of the Church by teaching such nonsense. The youth of today, more and more, understand and accept scientific evidence regarding evolution; and they also understand the hard wiring of human (and many other species) brains to same-sex attraction in six to eight percent of the population. Considering they were ‘made that way’ (if you believe in creationism, which the Church clearly does), the truly ‘Christian’ attitude is surely to understand this and accept people as they are. Leave people alone rather than try to force them to believe and behave as you think they should. Leave ‘gayness’ between the individual and their god, if they have one. If not, just mind your own business. What ever have they done to you to deserve such treatment? The fact that five hundred Mormons did join the gay pride march shows that at least some members do understand the facts. It also demonstrated an understanding of unconditional love; something Mormonism preaches but does not appear to practice.

Despite the fact that early missionaries baptised thousands of people in England in the mid 1800s, today, England (and Europe) is “a missionary graveyard” where very few join the Church. He has no idea that the days of superstition are behind us and that science has taught people the truth about many things. People no longer identify with the Mormon idea of a god that defies known science.

He then explains that the internet is the main problem – it is of course full of lies. “The reason why youth are not at Church is because they are on the internet.” He doesn’t understand that youngsters of today can determine truth from lies, or that the lies the Church itself presents on the internet are so easily discernable. Using the internet to combat the problem will only lead to further apostasy. Speaking of the internet, Hilton mentions anti-Mormon literature as nothing new and laughs at ‘recovery from Mormonism’ as if it is a joke, little realising the anguish and suffering that takes place when people reluctantly realise and have to face the truth and leave the fold, losing family and friends who then reject them as apostates. That is the Mormon version of being ‘Christian’, in a nutshell.

Finally, after over forty minutes, he speaks of Joseph Smith claiming the Book of Mormon being “the most correct book ever written.” Either it is true and Smith was a prophet, or it is not true and Smith was a fraud. The BOM is being attacked via the internet. In this ‘web’, says Hilton, is a spider (he shows an actual picture of a huge black spider) and it’s name is – wait for it – ‘Lucifer’. He strikes at the youth of the Church when they are weak. The only thing weak here is Hilton’s argument. The world-wide web is simply a resource for information that was always out there, but is now more readily accessible. Previously, the Church could hide its lies and deceptions quite easily. Now they are laid bare, which is why they feel the need to keep publishing new ‘essays’ in attempted damage limitation. Many members will question why the need and then also leave.

He doesn’t think Satan needs to attack grandpa or grandma, mom or dad, he goes after the kids. He clearly does not see all the Stake Presidents, Bishops and other Mormon leaders having a crisis of faith due to the truth ‘prevailing’. It’s not just youth leaving the Church. Hilton should take a look at the make up of ex-Mormon groups. He would soon discover who is leaving the Church.

Finally, he turns to ‘evidence’ for the BOM and declares: “DNA evidence proves the BOM true. Here’s the evidence for yourself – look it over.” At this point he is looking at a photo of two young soldiers firing a machine gun and a message appears in the smoke emissions “DNA proves the Book of Mormon true” – that’s it. No actual evidence is presented at all. My old friend, Simon Southerton, is well ahead of the game on this aspect, and apologists have no idea what to say next. I find it more than ironical that Hilton wants to refute the same evidence (DNA) that shows we are related to all living species, including earth worms (which it does), on one hand, and then on the other, to accept that DNA ‘proves’ the Book of Mormon (which it doesn’t) – it does exactly the opposite, which is why the Church was obliged to alter the description from reading that characters in the book were the ‘principle’ ancestors, to ‘among’ the ancestors of Native Americans a little while ago. If all else fails, change the rules, move the goal posts, make things up.

“Another round loaded” he says. “Joseph Smith was a true prophet. We can prove it. We can defend it.” But he can’t, and he doesn’t. He speaks of defending the faith. When people accuse the Church of being ‘Latter-day Lies’ – fire right back. “The Book of Mormon is true – I KNOW it.” Considering Church lawyers admitted in court, during the recent ‘Tom Phillips v. Thomas S. Monson’ case in London, England, that church “beliefs should no longer be considered facts” (so there was no case to answer), this will become a very dangerous statement to officially make in the future. People may ‘believe’ the Book of Mormon is true but leaders cannot state it as fact because the Church lawyers have declared that the Church (and Monson himself) does not do that. It is a matter of faith rather than fact. That will come back to bite them.

Youth can say they ‘know’ it spiritually and also physically because science backs it up. He still doesn’t state HOW. The fact is that science destroys the Book of Mormon over and over again in every aspect and detail. (See: The Mormon Delusion, Volume 2, for evidence of many of the scientific facts. An analysis of chapters is available under ‘TMD Volumes 1 & 2’ at the top of this page).

History is next. Hilton maintains “history backs it up.” He quotes Ballard and also the Book of Mormon itself, waffling on about Mormon evidence provided on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Still no evidence is actually presented. There is none. If you bother to check Facebook, Twitter and YouTube postings by the Church, there is nothing new and no tangible peer-reviewed scientific evidence available, just manipulations of the truth to suit Mormon needs. As with all the recent essays published by the Church to date – there is nothing new, just contradictions, excuses and apologies for the past.

So, apart from all the whinging and whining about youth leaving the Church, an offensive barrage of nonsense against the American President and many other faiths and non-believers, where is the evidence that was promised at the beginning. Where is all the ‘archaeological evidence’, ‘geographical evidence’, ‘genetic evidence’ and ‘historical evidence’ about the Book of Mormon? Not a single piece of evidence is presented. However, “it’s all about saving souls.”

Apparently, heroically, Hilton walked around Hong Kong on an injured leg for many months before being sent home early from a mission. When he returned home early (honourably) he was ostracised and rumours were spread about him, so he left the Church and was inactive for five years. He returned of course, and in tears he expresses his pain and then joy; but that experience should tell him something about how people feel who reject the Church due to the incontrovertible evidence against it, and he should at least understand how it feels to be rejected when one discovers the fraud. It also shows the typical Mormon attitude and assumptions made about people without due consideration. Unconditional love is not often practiced in the Church.

Overall, taking the view that science actually supports the Book of Mormon and at the same time, claiming that evolution is not scientifically proven, is unbelievably ignorant and it is clear that Hilton has just buried his head in the sand of delusional thinking – an absolute requirement in Mormonism, now that the truth is so blindingly obvious, thanks to science and the internet.

If John Dehlin’s ‘wow’, isn’t “Wow, how can this guy be so ignorant”, then I fail to see what it is for. To present this to the youth of the Church and give no evidence in support of the claims, leaving them to search the internet, will only exacerbate the problem. As the presentation shows, there are numerous web sites available with information regarding the Church, and they will see them all. Many youth will inevitably see through the lies presented, not by so-called anti-Mormon sites but by the Church itself, because many claims will defy known and accepted science. The Church has nailed its colours to the wrong mast and that mast has already been shot to pieces; the ship is sinking fast under the weight of scientific evidence (not just the theories of men). And it cannot be ‘saved’.

March 2014

Another essay has been released by the Mormon Church; this time addressing the idea of faithful Mormons becoming gods. It downplays the idea that planet owning and operating is part of the Mormon ‘plan’, yet admits to ‘creative potential’ – and the potential of becoming gods. The Church isn’t sure any longer about where its god came from, but does admit to the doctrine that men may become gods. Yet Smith specifically answered the question about where his god came from in his King Follett sermon, claiming it as evidence that men may also become gods. One half of the ‘couplet’, coined by (prophet of the Mormon god) Lorenzo Snow, based on Smith’s teachings (“As man now is, God once was; as God now is, man may be”), without the other half, simply doesn’t work. Couple that with the earlier church essay, admitting that polygamy will be practiced in the eternities, and where are we to suppose all the spirit children will go to be born as humans, if it is not to planets owned and operated by the newly ordained gods? There is certainly no doctrine that spirits fathered by many new ‘under-gods’ will all go to the same planet, operated by their original god.

The mess created by denying earlier, and very specific teachings, leaves the Mormon church spinning out of control in an ever downward spiral, while more and more members are seeing it for what it really is – a perpetuated nineteenth century hoax. The article contains some three and a half thousand words that really don’t say much of anything at all, despite the fact that ‘God’ is mentioned almost one hundred times.

LDS ESSAY: Becoming Like God.

“…while few Latter-day Saints would identify with caricatures of having their own planet, most would agree that the awe inspired by creation hints at our creative potential in the eternities.”

“The teaching that men and women have the potential to be exalted to a state of godliness clearly expands beyond what is understood by most contemporary Christian churches and expresses for the Latter-day Saints a yearning rooted in the Bible to live as God lives, to love as He loves, and to prepare for all that our loving Father in Heaven wishes for His children.”

“Since that sermon, known as the King Follett discourse, the doctrine that humans can progress to exaltation and godliness has been taught within the Church. Lorenzo Snow, the Church’s fifth President, coined a well-known couplet: “As man now is, God once was: As God now is, man may be.” Little has been revealed about the first half of this couplet, and consequently little is taught. When asked about this topic, Church President Gordon B. Hinckley told a reporter in 1997, “That gets into some pretty deep theology that we don’t know very much about.” When asked about the belief in humans’ divine potential, President Hinckley responded, “Well, as God is, man may become. We believe in eternal progression. Very strongly.” (Emphasis added to above three quotes from the essay).

I repeat: in that case, where will all the spirit children be born as human beings, if not on planets owned and operated by their new god-parents? And, of course, the whole aspect of the evolution required on each new planet cannot be addressed by the Church, as evolution is incompatible with Mormon theology on too many levels. Creationism is scientifically dead, but I doubt we will see a Church essay admitting to evolution as an established and irrefutable fact any time soon, despite the fact that over the last few decades, evolution has become one of the most fully substantiated and proven scientific theories we have (everything in science is theory – proven or otherwise; just in case there is someone out there who still doesn’t know). We actually know far more about evolution than we do about space-time curvature (gravity). On a new planet, it is not a given that humans as we know them would actually evolve at all – or intelligent life of any description for that matter. It is a lottery.

The following is an extract from my ‘The First Vision’ booklet, also available as an article to read free here.

“In his infamous King Follett sermon (at the funeral of a man who was killed by a bucket of bricks falling on his head during a well construction) Smith starts on about plural Gods for the first time in public. This was on 7 April 1844, a couple of months or so before Smith’s death. Following the disclosures in his talk, many Mormons left the fold as they considered it to be heresy. Reading what he came out with, this is perfectly understandable.

Smith takes Revelation 1:6 as his text. He says:

“God … is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret.”

“…He was once a man like us; yea, that God himself, the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth … and I will show it from the Bible.”

A recent Mormon prophet, Gordon B. Hinckley, at least twice, publicly stated he does not know that they teach it and he does not know much about it. (See: San Francisco Chronicle, 13 Apr 1997:3/Z1 Don Lattin, religion editor; also Time Magazine, 4 Aug 1997).

Smith declared “It is plain beyond disputation…” He quotes Revelation 1:6 directly from the KJV: “And hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”

Note the phrase, “God and His Father”. Smith then states “It is altogether correct in the translation”. This is because he wants to propound his new concept that God had a father and that there are many Gods. However, Smith either forgot, or more likely simply ignored, the fact that when he had been inspired to ‘correct’ biblical scripture in his earlier Inspired Revision, he altered that very verse in order to clarify the tradition that God of course does not have a father. [In the KJV ‘God and His Father’ is followed by ‘him‘, in the singular, hinting at mistranslation – which has been corrected in almost all later versions of the Bible]. Yet here, in 1844, Smith completely ignores his own earlier Inspired Revision and claims the KJV is ‘altogether correct’ – just to suit his newly developed thinking.

Inspired Revision: Rev 1:6 …and hath made us kings and priests unto God his Father. To him be glory and dominion, forever and ever. Amen. (Emphasis added).

If Smith’s claim that the KJV is “altogether correct” is accepted by the Church in order to justify his plural Gods theology; then they must also accept that he lied in the IR. Either way, he is caught in his duplicity and his lies – and that is a true mark of a false prophet.”

Understanding that alone should be enough to turn any sane person away from Mormonism.

See also, Sandra Tanner’s excellent note: “Mormons Hope to Become Gods of Their Own Worlds Procreating Endless Numbers of Children.”

These are a few of the quotes Sandra references:

“The heaven of the Saints is something we can look forward to in the confident hope of realizing our inheritances and enjoying them forever, when the earth becomes sanctified and made new. And there, as here, we will spread forth, and multiply our children. How long? For eternity. What, resurrected Saints have children? Yes, the same as our God, who is the Father of our spirits; so you, if you are faithful to the end, will become fathers to your sons and daughters, who will be as innumerable as the sands upon the sea shore; they will be your children, and you will be their heavenly fathers, the same as our heavenly Father is Father to us, and they will belong to your kingdoms through all the vast ages of eternity, the same as we will belong to our father’s kingdom.” (B. H. Roberts, The Mormon Doctrine of Deity, p.284).

“Logically and naturally, the ultimate desire of a loving Supreme Being is to help his children enjoy all that he enjoys. For Latter-day Saints, the term “godhood” denotes the attainment of such a state—one of having all divine attributes and doing as God does and being as God is. Such a state is to be enjoyed by all exalted, embodied, intelligent beings (see Deification; Eternal Progression; Exaltation; God; Perfection). The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that all resurrected and perfected mortals become gods (cf. Gen. 3:22; Matt. 5:48). They will dwell again with God the Father, and live and act like him in endless worlds of happiness, power, love, glory, and knowledge; above all, they will have the power of procreating endless lives. Latter-day Saints believe that Jesus Christ attained godhood (see Christology) and that he marked the path and led the way for others likewise to become exalted divine beings by following him” (cf. John 14:3). (Encyclopaedia of Mormonism, Vol.2: Godhood).

“When the servants of God and their wives go to heaven there is an eternal union, and they will multiply and replenish the world to which they are going.” (Orson Hyde, 6 October 1854. Journal of Discourses, Vol. 2 pp. 85-86).

“When we talk about celestial glory, we talk of the condition of endless increase; if we obtain celestial glory in the fullest sense of the word, then we have wives and children in eternity, we have the power of endless lives granted unto us, the power of propagation that will endure through all eternity, all being fathers and mothers in eternity; fathers of fathers, and mothers of mothers, kings and queens, priests and priestesses, and shall I say more? Yes, all becoming gods.” (George Q. Cannon, 31 October 1880. Journal of Discourses, Vol. 22, p. 125). (Emphasis added to the above quotes).

Clearly, personal ‘worlds’ will be needed to facilitate the promise of being gods to ‘endless’ offspring.

Question: Where the hell are all those countless (and endless) children going to live, if not on planets provided for these new gods to rule over? I was taught that I would have my own planet as a god, by missionaries, when I converted in 1960 at age fourteen. It was one of the enticements that appealed to a young lad who liked constructing things… the church is altering everything I was ever led to believe was doctrine – changing with the tide of popular opinion at every turn. Meanwhile, dozens of other ex Mormons have confirmed their understanding has always been the same as mine and they are as perplexed as I am about it. It just proves the hoax over and over. Having confirmed that men can become gods and have many wives and untold numbers of spirit children who will all need human bodies, perhaps the church can now disclose how they plan to accomodate this need for all these gods, if they are not to have planets – instead of thinking the following will simply make it all go away?

“Do Latter-day Saints believe that they will “get their own planet”? No. This idea is not taught in Latter-day Saint scripture, nor is it a doctrine of the Church. This misunderstanding stems from speculative comments unreflective of scriptural doctrine.”

How then does the Church explain (see below) the completely opposite claim expressed in their own Ensign magazine barely a decade ago, by one of their own apostles no less? My thanks to a friend, who wishes to remain anonymous, for sharing more quotes from leaders confirming the idea that men, as gods, will govern worlds of their own. The following are just two of several examples:

“The real life we’re preparing for is eternal life. Secular knowledge has for us eternal significance. Our conviction is that God, our Heavenly Father, wants us to live the life that He does. We learn both the spiritual things and the secular things so that we may one day create worlds and people and govern them (see The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, ed. Edward L. Kimball [1982],386)“ (Henry B. Eyring, “Education for Real Life” [CES fireside for young adults, May 6, 2001], 2-3, 5). (Emphasis added).

They even teach it in a lesson manual designed for children aged between 4 and 11 years of age. Note it only mentions ‘his’, (only male gods): Teaching Children from 4-11.

“Each one of you has it within the realm of his possibility to develop a kingdom over which you will preside as its king and god. You will need to develop yourself and grow in ability and power and worthiness, to govern such a world with all of its people.” (Emphasis added).

Many gods, with many wives, and ‘endless’ children – a concept even taught to children – but now, out of nowhere (and for no logical reason that I can fathom), no planets for men to rule over as gods. Yet there always used to be – we could aspire to “create worlds and people and govern them”, but now we can’t and yet our god has had billions of children (apparently) and if men can become like him, how can they be real gods with their own billions of children with no personal planets to accomodate them?

So, are they going to alter the Doctrine and Covenants, or just pretend it doesn’t actually mean what it so clearly states?

D&C132: 19 And again, verily I say unto you, if a man marry a wife by my word, which is my law, and by the new and everlasting covenant, …Ye shall come forth in the first resurrection; …and shall inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions, …and they shall pass by the angels, and the gods, which are set there, to their exaltation and glory in all things, as hath been sealed upon their heads, which glory shall be a fulness and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever.

  1. Then shall they be gods, because they have no end; therefore shall they be from everlasting to everlasting, because they continue; then shall they be above all, because all things are subject unto them. Then shall they be gods, because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto them.

In the strange world of Mormonism, becoming a god has always meant having many wives, innumerable children, creating worlds, and populating them; ALWAYS – it was every man’s ultimate goal. Until now.

It gets worse. Thanks to Jean Bodie (and Kerry Shirts) for these additional quotes:

“President Snow said: ‘Wait a moment, President Brimhall, I want to see these children at work; what are they doing?’ Brother Brimhall replied that they were making clay spheres. ‘That is very interesting,’ the President said. ‘I want to watch them.’ He quietly watched the children for several minutes and then lifted a little girl, perhaps six years of age, and stood her on a table. He then took the clay sphere from her hand, and, turning to Brother Brimhall, said:

“‘President Brimhall, these children are now at play, making mud worlds, the time will come when some of these boys, through their faithfulness to the gospel, will progress and develop in knowledge, intelligence and power, in future eternities, until they shall be able to go out into space where there is unorganized matter and call together the necessary elements, and through their knowledge of and control over the laws and powers of nature, to organize matter into worlds on which their posterity may dwell, and over which they shall rule as gods’” (Quoting Lorenzo Snow, Improvement Era, June 1919, 658–59).” (Emphasis added).

“In the spring of 1840, just before leaving on his first mission to England, Lorenzo Snow spent an evening in the home of his friend, Elder H. G. Sherwood, in Nauvoo. Elder Sherwood was endeavoring to explain the parable of the Savior about the husbandman who sent forth servants at different hours of the day to labor in the vineyard. While thus engaged in thought this most important event occurred, as told by President Snow himself:

“‘While attentively listening to his (Elder Sherwood’s) explanation, the Spirit of the Lord rested mightily upon me—the eyes of my understanding were opened, and I saw as clear as the sun at noon-day, with wonder and astonishment, the pathway of God and man. I formed the following couplet which expresses the revelation, as it was shown to me … :

As man now is,
God once was:
As God now is,
man may be.

“‘I felt this to be a sacred communication which I related to no one except my sister Eliza, until I reached England, when in a confidential, private conversation with President Brigham Young, in Manchester, I related to him this extraordinary manifestation.’

“Soon after his return from England, in January, 1843, Lorenzo Snow related to the Prophet Joseph Smith his experience in Elder Sherwood’s home. This was in a confidential interview in Nauvoo. The Prophet’s reply was: ‘Brother Snow, that is true gospel doctrine, and it is a revelation from God to you’” (Snow, Improvement Era, June 1919, 656). (Emphasis added).

A photographic copy of the June 1919 Improvement Era is available.

‘Mormon Voices’ claims, “A search of LDS.org, which includes all of the church lesson manuals, all talks given in church conferences, and all magazines published by the LDS church shows that there are no instances—zero—where it is taught that we will be ‘gods of our own planets.” (Emphasis added).

Perhaps they could then explain the following:

We will become gods and have jurisdiction over worlds, and these worlds will be peopled by our own offspring. We will have an endless eternity for this.” (J.F. Smith – Doctrines of Salvation Vol.2 p. 48).

“We educate ourselves in the secular field and in the spiritual field so that we may one day create worlds, people and govern them.” (Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball – p. 386).

“All those who are counted worthy to be exalted and to become Gods, even the sons of God, will go forth and have earths and worlds like those who framed this and millions on millions of others.” Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses Vol.17, p.143).

And, if that wasn’t enough, FAIR cites three references that confirm Mormon men who become gods can indeed create their own worlds – so who do you believe? This is the link for the following references

FAIR – “Mormonism and the nature of God/Deification of man/Gods of their own planets/Statements.”

“Statements by Church leaders which refer to becoming like our Father in Heaven and participating in the creation of worlds.”

Brigham Young: “As for their labor and pursuits in eternity I have not time to talk upon that subject; but we shall have plenty to do. We shall not be idle. We shall go on from one step to another, reaching forth into the eternities until we become like the Gods, and shall be able to frame for ourselves, by the behest and command of the Almighty. All those who are counted worthy to be exalted and to become Gods, even the sons of God, will go forth and have earths and worlds like those who framed this and millions on millions of others.” Journal of Discourses 17:143.

Heber C. Kimball: “When you have learned to become obedient to the Father that dwells upon this earth, to the Father and God of this earth, and obedient to the messengers He sends—when you have done all that, remember you are not going to leave this earth. You will never leave it until you become qualified, and capable, and capacitated to become a father of an earth yourselves.” —Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses 1:356.

Joseph Fielding Smith: “The Father has promised us that through our faithfulness we shall be blessed with the fulness of his kingdom. In other words we will have the privilege of becoming like him. To become like him we must have all the powers of godhood;’ thus a man and his wife when glorified will have spirit children. who eventually will go on an earth like this one we are on and pass through the same kind of experiences, being subject to mortal conditions, and if faithful, then they also will receive the fulness of exaltation and partake of the same blessings. There is no end to this development; it will go on forever. We will become gods and have jurisdiction over worlds, and these worlds will be peopled by our own offspring. We will have an endless eternity for this.” —Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, Vol. 2, p.48

I cannot understand how Mormon Church leaders can officially deny what FAIR clearly exposes above. To repeat what I quoted earlier: “Do Latter-day Saints believe that they will “get their own planet”? No. This idea is not taught in Latter-day Saint scripture, nor is it a doctrine of the Church. This misunderstanding stems from speculative comments unreflective of scriptural doctrine.” A definitive statement – straight from the LDS Newsroom.

In all the above sources (including FAIR), several references are the same, but they are repeated at each stage for clarity.

Having said all of the above, bearing in mind such an abundance of damning evidence, could it just be that I, along with all the newspaper articles and many blogs, got this entirely wrong? Could it be (despite the fact that they have not removed earlier condemning ‘newsroom’ statements) that the statements in the essay “Latter-day Saints’ doctrine of exaltation is often similarly reduced in media to a cartoonish image of people receiving their own planets” and “Likewise, while few Latter-day Saints would identify with caricatures of having their own planet, most would agree that the awe inspired by creation hints at our creative potential in the eternities” (emphasis added), are now meant to imply that whilst it is true that new gods will indeed create their own planets, most Mormons would not relate to that idea in the irreligious way such caricatures present it; what with it being such a sacred doctrine? In light of previous declarations, of course this must be highly unlikely.

However, the statements are indeed a little ambiguous, although everyone seems to have come to the same conclusion. Just in case we all got it wrong, the fault clearly (as ever) lies with the Church which continues in its half truths, and often outright lies. A clear statement saying “Yes, men can become gods, have many wives and billions of spirit children on an endless basis; and of course they will be endowed with creative powers enabling them to organise new worlds for their offspring” is needed (and that is what has always been taught). Instead of which, the Church continues to confuse everyone; in this case with some three and a half thousand words, when the above thirty-six would do. Whatever the case, clarification is needed. If, however, we are all right, then further explanation is required as it completely alters established doctrine. It is inexplicable and theologically inexcusable.

In Mormonism, the madness never ends.