Search the Handbook


Mormon Handbook
Order Book | Download
$20                $5



« King James English in the Book of Mormon | View of the Hebrews »
Saturday
Mar262011

Anachronisms

Anachronism: an error in chronology in which a person, object, event, etc., is assigned to a date or period other that the correct one. —dictionary.com

Timeline
600 BC
Jews exiled to Babylon and learn Aramaic. Book of Mormon: small group of Jews flee to New World.
300 BC
Hellenization: Alexander the Great's conquest results in Greek influence over Israel. Koine (Common) Greek replaces Hebrew and Aramaic as the primary language of Jews.
421 AD
Book of Mormon narrative ends.
1492 AD
Christopher Columbus discovers the New World.
1611 AD
King James translation of the biblical texts published.
1830 AD
Book of Mormon published.

Joseph Smith claimed that the Book of Mormon is his translation of a book written in Reformed Egyptian engraven on gold plates, which is a record of the ancient inhabitants of the Americas. The narrative dates itself from the Tower of Babel to about 421 AD.

Animals

Cattle, Oxen, Ass There is no evidence that cattle, oxen, or ass inhabited the New World prior to European contact.
Elephants Elephants are only native to Asia and Africa. Mastodons and mammoths became extinct during the Ice Age.
Goats, Sheep Goats were first introduced on the American continent by Europeans in the 15th century.
Horses North American horses became extinct around the same time as wooly mammoths, and were reintroduced in the Americas in the 1500's by the Spanish.
See Canadian Geographic
Swine There is no evidence of swine in the Americas prior to European contact.

Ether 9:18 says that: swine is useful for the food of man. The author must have forgotten that God forbade the Jews to eat pig.
See Leviticus 11:7, Deuteronomy 14:8, Isaiah 66:17


Agriculture

Barley Barley did not exist in the Americas before European contact.
Figs Figs were not native to the Americas during Book of Mormon times.
Silk Silk comes from the Asian moth Bombyx mori, unknown to the pre-Columbian Americas.
Wheat Wheat was introduced to the Americas by the Europeans.


Industry

Chariots There is no evidence that ancient cultures used wheeled vehicles in the Americas.
Cimeters A 15th century word for the curved, single-edged sword of Oriental origins. It is out of place for 500 B.C. American Indians.
Coinage No pre-Columbian coinage has ever been found.
Compass The compass was invented in China around 1100 A.D., long after the Book of Mormon ends in 421 A.D.
Steel There is no evidence of high-temperature smelting in ancient American cultures. The narrative also mentions dross, which is smelting waste product. It also mentions swords made out of steel and cankered with rust.
Windows Transparent glass was invented in Germany in the 11th century, long after the Book of Mormon ends in 421 A.D.


Linguistics

  • Greek words
    In the Book of Mormon narrative, a small group of Jews left Jerusalem for the New World in 600 B.C. From this point forward, Greek words and concepts would be unknown to them, as the Hellenization of Israel did not take place until 300 B.C.
    Alpha and Omega The first and last letters of the Greek alphabet should not be found on an authentic ancient text from the Americas.
    Apostle The Twelve Apostles were appointed by Jesus Christ around 30 A.D. The word apostle is from the Greek apostolos. In the Book of Mormon narrative an angel asks Nephi if he remembers the twelve apostles 600 years before Jesus Christ was born.
    Christ Christ is from the Greek Khristos, which is the a translation of the Hebrew Mashiah (Messiah/Messias), which means "anointed one". Christ never appears in the Hebrew Old Testament, and we only see Messias used twice in the Greek New Testament, and only when the author explains the translation:

    Holy Bible He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ.
    — John 1:41

    The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.
    — John 4:25

    Messiah is only mentioned twice in the entire Old Testament: Daniel 9:25-26.
    Yet it is used 26 times in the Book of Mormon.

    Further dating itself as a modern work:
    • Christ is used 186 times in the Book of Mormon during the Old Testament era.
    • In one instance, the name Jesus Christ is used two millennium before he is ever born.
    • In the Bible, the word Antichrist is only used in John's epistles I & II. In the Book of Mormon Anti-Christ is used 76 years before the birth of Christ.
    Christians In the Book of Mormon, the Jews call believers Christians 100 years before Jesus Christ was ever born.
    Isabel Isabel is a form of Elizabeth, which origin is from the Greek Eleisabeth.
    Timothy Timothy is from the Greek Timotheos.

  • Latin words
    A selection of Latin words used in the Book of Mormon.
    Bible The word Bible is from the Latin Biblia. The last book of the Bible was written as late as 90 A.D. and the collection and canonization of all the biblical books developed over time thereafter. However the Book of Mormon speaks of the Bible nearly 600 years before the New Testament was ever written.
    Holy Ghost The two titles Holy Ghost/Holy Spirit are a product of the King James translation of the New Testament. The word Ghost comes from the Old English gast, of which the King James often, but not always renders the Greek words hagios (holy) pneuma (spirit) as Holy Ghost. The King James is not consistent in its translation though, for example in Luke 11:13 hagios pneuma is rendered Holy Spirit. Thus the two titles are unique to the KJV NT as modern English translations are consistent in using just the one title: Holy Spirit.

    We would not expect to see an 1830 translation of an ancient text produce the same two title trait unique to the King James New Testament, but alas in the Book of Mormon we do. Holy Spirit is used 15 times and Holy Ghost 84 times.

    Oddly, the Book of Mormon also uses both titles in the same sentence:
    Book of Mormon ...and deny the good word of Christ, and the power of God, and the gift of the Holy Ghost, and quench the Holy Spirit, and make a mock of the great plan of redemption...
    Jacob 6:8
    Religion From the Latin religio. Not found in the Hebrew Old Testament but used 10 times in the Book of Mormon, as early as 72 B.C.

    Book of Mormon 44:5 ...by our faith, by our religion, and by our rites of worship, and by our church, and by the sacred support which we owe to our wives and our children, by that liberty which binds us to our lands and our country; yea, and also by the maintenance of the sacred word of God, to which we owe all our happiness...
    48:13 ...and he had sworn with an oath to defend his people, his rights, and his country, and his religion...
    51:6 ...for the freemen had sworn or covenanted to maintain their rights and the privileges of their religion by a free government...
    — Alma 44:5, 48:13, 51:6
    Are these the words of native Indians of 72 B.C. or American Founding Fathers of 1776 AD?
    Revelation From the Latin revelatio. Not found in the Hebrew Old Testament but 31 times in the Book of Mormon, as early as 588 B.C.
  • Joseph Smith admitted that Greek and Latin were not on the gold plates:
    Joseph Smith There was no Greek or Latin upon the plates from which I, through the grace of God, translated the Book of Mormon. Let the language of that book speak for itself.

    Joseph Smith - Mormonism founder
    Times and Seasons, Vol. 4, No. 13, p.193


Theology

A selection of concepts unique to New Testament Christianity (30 A.D.) that are mentioned and understood in the Old Testament era Book of Mormon.
Baptize / Baptism From the Greek baptizein. First introduced in the Gospels with John the Baptist. Absent in the Jewish Canon or the LXX OT (Septuagint), but mentioned 58 times in the OT era Book of Mormon.
"God the Father" The concept of God as Father is not emphasized in the Old Testament until the arrival of Jesus Christ, when he declared "Abba Father" (Mark 14:36, Romans 8:15, Galatians 4:6) in the Gospels. Thus the title God the Father is unique to the Greek New Testament and not found in the Hebrew Old Testament. The title is used seven times in the OT era Book of Mormon.
Gospel From the Old English godspel, of which Jesus Christ first introduced the Greek euangelion ("good news") in the Gospels. Gospel is not found in the Old Testament but is used 15 times in the OT era Book of Mormon, where it was introduced 600 years before the birth of Jesus Christ.
"Kingdom of God" The phrase Kingdom of God is unique to New Testament Christianity, and is not found in the Old Testament. However it used 31 times in the OT era Book of Mormon.
"King of Heaven" The phrase Kingdom of Heaven is unique to Gospel of Matthew, and is not found in any other New or Old Testament book. However it is used 16 times throughout the Book of Mormon.
"Lamb of God" The phrase Lamb of God is unique to the Gospel of John (John 1:29,36), and is not found in any other New or Old Testament book. However it is used 33 times throughout the Book of Mormon as early as 600 B.C.
"Mysteries of God" The phrase Mysteries of God is used by the Apostle Paul once in 1 Corinthians 4:1. Paul also uses Mystery of God in Colossians 2:2 and John in Revelation 10:7. No other New or Old Testament books use this phrase. However the Book of Mormon uses this phrase 8 times through the Book of Mormon as early as 600 B.C.
"Son of God" While sons of god is used to label angels in the Old Testament, the title Son of God is unique to the New Testament texts as a title for Jesus Christ. The Book of Mormon text uses the label 55 times and 600 years before Jesus Christ was born.
Resurrection From the Latin resurgere. While the notion of coming back from the dead is found in the Old Testament texts (Psalm 17:15, Daniel 12:2, Isaiah 26:19), the resurrection as a technical concept and word is unique to the Greek New Testament. The Book of Mormon text uses resurrection 53 times and 600 years before the New Testament was ever written.
Once a week worship service In Judaism worship services are held daily. The concept of a once a week worship service is unique to Christianity.

Mosiah 18:25 reflects 19th century Christianity not 147 B.C. Judaism:
Book of Mormon And there was one day in every week that was set apart that they should gather themselves together to teach the people, and to worship the Lord their God, and also, as often as it was in their power, to assemble themselves together.
Mosiah 18:25


Quoting from the King James Bible

The Book of Mormon quotes anachronistically from the King James Bible.
  • The Book of Acts records the apostle Peter paraphrasing Moses (Deut. 18:18-19) during his sermon at Pentecost. This happened around 60 A.D. In the Book of Mormon, around 580 B.C., Nephi claims to also quote from Moses, but instead he quotes Peter's paraphrasing of Moses verbatim, 640 years before Peter gave his sermon.
    Apostle Peter (60 A.D.) Book of Mormon (580 B.C.)
    Holy Bible For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you. And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.
    — Acts 3:22-23
    Book of Mormon ...the words of Moses, which he spake, saying: A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you. And it shall come to pass that all those who will not hear that prophet shall be cut off from among the people.
    1 Nephi 22:20
  • Alma chapter 5 plagiarizes John the Baptist about 80 years before he was born.
    John the Baptist (30 A.D.) Alma (83 B.C.)
    Holy Bible And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
    — Matthew 3:10
    Book of Mormon And again I say unto you, the Spirit saith: Behold, the ax is laid at the root of the tree; therefore every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit shall be hewn down and cast into the fire...
    Alma 5:52
  • Mosiah chapter 16 plagiarizes the apostle Paul 200 years before he wrote his firsts epistle to the church at Corinth.
    Apostle Paul (55 A.D.) Mosiah (148 B.C.)
    Holy Bible For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
    — 1 Corinthians 15:53
    Book of Mormon Even this mortal shall put on immortality, and this corruption shall put on incorruption...
    Mosiah 16:10
  • 2 Nephi plagiarizes the apostle Paul 600 years before he wrote his epistle to the church at Roman.
    Apostle Paul (68 A.D.) 2 Nephi (555 B.C.)
    Holy Bible For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
    — Romans 8:6
    Book of Mormon ...to be carnally-minded is death, and to be spiritually-minded is life eternal.
    2 Nephi 9:39
  • Jerald and Sandra Tanner have identified over 2,500 verses in the Book of Mormon copied from the New Testament alone.


Conclusion

There is only one explanation that best explains all of the Book of Mormon anachronisms: it is a product of the 19th century and not the authentic ancient record it purports to be.


Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.