My Coming Out pt2 – The Golden Plates
Finding the Golden Plates
The story of the first vision that we have all been taught is but one of at least four distinctly different accounts. The official first vision distributed by the church is quite different from the hand written account by Joseph Smith. He recounts, in 1832, hosts of angels and only one personage (one account names him as Jesus Christ while another says he was unnamed) appearing. Also, there is no evidence of the revival Joseph mentions happening in 1820. No revival of note in the recorded year and a description of the first vision not recorded for 12 years, questionable at least.
Joseph is known to have used “folk magic” and a seer stone (see the Translation section of this letter as well). Smith would sell his time and ability to the farmers in the area that he lived to find buried treasure on their lands. In March 1826 Joseph was brought up on charges of being a disorderly person and an imposter. He claimed to have a stone he could look through to see treasures that were hidden in the earth, but he had given it up as it has injured his eyes.
Francis W Kirkham states, “A careful study of all facts regarding this alleged confession of Joseph Smith in a court of law that he had used a seer stone to find hidden treasure for purposes of fraud, must come to the conclusion that no such record was ever made, and therefore, is not in existence…. had he [Joseph Smith] made this confession in a court of law as early as 1826, or four years before the Book of Mormon was printed, and this confession was in a court record, it would have been impossible for him to have organized the restored Church.” Kirkham says that if the court case and confession of Smith were true the church could not be.
Multiple stories surround the actual plates as well. We do not know what they were made out of, what language they were written in, if the entirety of the Book of Mormon could fit on one-third of the actual plates, nor if they even existed. The only people to witness the plates have conflicting stories of the size and how they saw them. The dimensions of the plates are similar in size so I can see past that little inconsistency. Some of the witnesses state that they saw the plates in a vision and never actually saw the physical plates even though the official testimony of the witnesses is about the physical plates.
Posted on April 2, 2013, in Christianity, Coming Out, Mormon-isms and tagged atheism, atheist, book of mormon, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, evidence, faith, faithless, free, free thinker, free thinking, free thought, freethought, LDS, Mormon, open. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.