The Lost Book of Abraham YouTube Video

On another post where I asked people why they had left the LDS Church, a commenter named Max said this as part of his comment:

About two years ago I came across a video on youtube called “The Lost Book of Abraham.” In a period of 1 hour, my faith and belief in the church was utterly shattered and I could no longer believe. It cost me my marriage, my relationship with my children, my relationship with my brother and my sisters. It cost me the relationships with my parents and my friends.

The video can be found here. However, it bears mentioning that the video is made by an organization whose intent is to prevent people from joining the LDS Church and cause its members to leave. In other words, this is a war, and this is an attack by an enemy. Any claim that this is a kind-hearted attempt to inform open-minded persons, or to aid those who might be confused, is as credible a claim as Obama saying he wants to reach across the aisle and work with Republicans. Therefore, it’s probably a good idea, in addition to watching the video, to read the other side’s response to the Lost Book of Abraham Video.

Comments

  1. Ben McGuire begins his essay with an Ad Hominem attack on the author of "The Lost Book of Abraham." McGuire states that the purpose of the video is to destroy the faith of Mormons. This is of course true. However, what matters is not the motive of the author, but whether the author's arguments are valid.

    Ben McGuire presents two arguments: first, the manuscript that was revealed in 1966 is not the manuscript Joseph Smith used in composing The Book of Abraham; second, Joseph Smith did not translate The Book of Abraham, but was somehow inspired by the manuscript to compose The Book of Abraham.

    These arguments contradict each other. Either Joseph Smith used the manuscript revealed in 1966 or he did not. The problem with the first argument is that the manuscript was accepted by the Mormon hierarchy and Hugh Nimbley as the authentic manuscript Joseph Smith used. Also, "Scholars conclude that the recovered papyri are portions of the originals partly based on the fact that the fragments were pasted onto paper which had "drawings of a temple and maps of the Kirtland, Ohio area" on the back and were accompanied by an affidavit by Emma Smith stating that they had been in the possession of Joseph Smith.[11]."
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Smith_Papyri

    The problem with the second argument, is that Joseph Smith specifically used the word "translation" to describe what he was doing:

    with W.W. Phelps and Oliver Cowdery as scribes, I commenced the translation of some of the characters or hieroglyphics, and much to our joy found that one of the rolls contained the writings of Abraham, another the writings of Joseph of Egypt, etc. — a more full account of which will appear in its place, as I proceed to examine or unfold them.[4]
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Abraham

    • The Book of Abraham was not supposed to be translated the way that the Egyptologists say. http://youtu.be/3bm6Npd1Hjw

  2. "These arguments contradict each other. Either Joseph Smith used the manuscript revealed in 1966 or he did not."

    Do they contradict? Why couldn't it be both? I can write a book based partially on interviews, and partly on research, can I not? Then why couldn't the book of Abraham be part translation and part inspiration?

    "The problem with the first argument is that the manuscript was accepted by the Mormon hierarchy and Hugh Nimbley as the authentic manuscript Joseph Smith used."

    Was it? Was it accepted as the sole manuscript Joseph used? Was it accepted as a source of translation, a source of inspiration, or a mixture of both? And could we not suppose, for the sake of argument, that Nibley and the "Mormon hierarchy" were wrong? Would that make the book of Abraham inauthentic, or merely show once again, as has never been disputed, that mere mortal men are imperfect and sometimes misled?

    “Scholars conclude that the recovered papyri are portions of the originals partly based on the fact that the fragments were pasted onto paper which had “drawings of a temple and maps of the Kirtland, Ohio area” on the back and were accompanied by an affidavit by Emma Smith stating that they had been in the possession of Joseph Smith.[11].”

    Portions of the original what? Portions of the scrolls that were recovered along with the scrolls from which the book of Abraham was translated? Portions of the scrolls that served as the source of the translation? Also…should we really be trusting Wikipedia to lead us through this discussion? I trust Wikipedia for unimportant stuff, but not so much for this type of stuff.

    "The problem with the second argument, is that Joseph Smith specifically used the word “translation” to describe what he was doing:"

    Does that mean he was actually translating all the time? According to many accounts, including that of his wife, Joseph Smith was a bit of a backwoods ignoramus. Can we be sure that when he used the word "translating" that he meant what we mean when we use the same word?

    "I commenced the translation of some of the characters or hieroglyphics, and much to our joy found that one of the rolls contained the writings of Abraham, another the writings of Joseph of Egypt, etc. — a more full account of which will appear in its place, as I proceed to examine or unfold them.[4]"

    Of course this next quote you provide could be the response. It seems reasonable to conclude, at least from this statement, that some of the scrolls contained writings of Abraham, and one would assume these writings make up either part or the entire part of what is contained in the book of Abraham. But then we're back to the other argument, that of asking whether what portion of the scrolls has been recovered is the same part as what Smith was referring to here.

    • Great inihtsg. Relieved I’m on the same side as you.

    • Basically a bunch of no good people failed to recognize that is that it wasn’t until here last year (2014..Quite recently eh!) that the translation from Joseph Smith was of course not supposed to be translated the same way that the Egyptologists see it! Otherwise it’d be an abomination! Click on http://youtu.be.3bm6Npd1Hjw for further details!

    • Have you seen Book of Abraham Debunks anti-LDS Lies http://youtu.be/3bm6Npd1Hjw yet?

  3. “The problem with the second argument, is that Joseph Smith specifically used the word “translation” to describe what he was doing:”

    Does that mean he was actually translating all the time?

    – Joshua Steimle

    ——–

    I certainly think so. This is what Joseph Smith wrote, "A translation from some ancient Records, that have fallen into our hands from the catacombs of Egypt. The Writings of Abraham while he was in Egypt, called the Book of Abraham, written by his won hand, upon papyrus."

    He did not say anything about revelation. He did not say, "This is a manuscript copied copied over a thousand years after Abraham wrote the original document." He said this writing by Abraham was "written by his own hand." There cannot possibly be any legitimate reason to doubt the meaning of his claim. Nor can there possibly be any reason to believe that the claim was truthful. Abraham did not write on that document. Joseph Smith did not translate it.

  4. Ok, let's assume that's correct. How do we know for sure that we have ever seen in modern days the actual papyri from which Joseph Smith claimed to have translated the Book of Abraham?

  5. " … one of the rolls contained the writings of Abraham … "

    The facsimiles are not rolls. The Book of Abraham is always described as being a roll, long enough 'to spread from one end [of Lucy Mack's] home to the other. Thus, the scroll of the BOA still has not surfaced.

  6. The Book of Abraham was not ever supposed to be translated the way that the Egyptologists say! Google ”Book of Abraham Debunks anti-Mormon Arguments You Tube” http://youtu.be/3bm6Npd1Hjw

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