July 8, 2015

Another possible avenue for evaluating the historicity of the Book of Mormon is proper name homophony.  This is a complicated methodology that can be easily misunderstood and misused.  Basically, this scholarly methodology is founded on the recognition that proper names in language A are generally transliterated rather than translated into language B.  Therefore remnants of language A can sometimes be seen reflected in language B–especially given that ancient names generally had some meaning.  Furthermore, it is widely recognized that pronunciation and transliteration from… Read more

July 8, 2015

The Book of Mormon dramatically describes a cataclysmic war which results in the desertion of many Nephites to the Lamanites, and the destruction of the Nephite polity and culture (Mormon 4-6, Moroni 9).   The traditional dates in the Book of Mormon footnotes are roughly AD 363-385.  (Assuming a 4 BC date for the birth of Christ, the actual dates may be closer to AD 360-381.) The Book of Mormon thus predicts that the 360s and 370s were an era in… Read more

July 8, 2015

Over the holiday prof. Jenkins posted on his own blog what he sees as a summary of the debate thus far.  Here is the link. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/anxiousbench/2015/07/the-book-of-mormon-revisited/ I’m obviously falling behind in responding; I’ll endeavor to respond–and I do have substantive responses–in the next few days. Read more

July 8, 2015

I’ve been otherwise occupied over the holiday weekend, and haven’t kept up on the blog.  This was sent to me by prof. Jenkins a few days ago, responding to the Akish argument.   ====================  I am responding to your post at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/enigmaticmirror/2015/07/04/hamblin-25-u-kixakish/   I do note the qualifying introductory note, but let me pursue the question as if you were still pressing the original claim. Let me begin very seriously by saying how pleased I am that we are finally dealing… Read more

July 8, 2015

My friend Neal Rappleye recently posted an important response to some of the things Jenkins has been saying.  With his permission, I’m posting his entire article here.  The original can be found at his blog “Studio et Quoque Fide”.  He’s an excellent young Mormon scholar; keep your eyes on him.  The rest of this post is by Neal. ================= Scripture and “Western Liberal Orthodoxies” James K. Hoffmeier is the leading advocate for a historical Exodus and the general reliability of… Read more

July 4, 2015

NOTE:  My friend Mark Wright, a professional Maya scholar and linguist, just informed me that recent phonetic interpretations of the glyph traditionally rendered as “kix/kish” below are now thought to read “kokan.”  If the new interpretation is correct, then this argument is rendered moot.    Now that we’ve got some of the methodological issues on the table (with no agreement), and have discussed the paucity of Preclassic inscriptions, I’d like to turn to the Temple of the Cross Inscription at… Read more

July 3, 2015

Prof. Jenkins insists that there should be “objective evidence” for the Book of Mormon.  So my question for Jenkins is: What would he considered “objective evidence” for the BOM?  I’m not talking about vague categories; see the blue text below. We have been discussing the significance of inscriptional evidence, and the paucity thereof for Preclassic Mesoamerica.  Jenkins seems to think that the paucity of inscriptional evidence is a decisive argument against the BOM. So, my question for professor Jenkins is: If we had… Read more

July 3, 2015

I have read your recent post on epistemology, which genuinely took me aback: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/enigmaticmirror/2015/06/30/hamblin-20-centrality-of-hermeneutics/  I can’t believe you wrote that. I will take very serious issue with your views. In previous dealings with Mormon apologists, who are basically very conservative individuals, I have been amused to see them resort so often to radical post-modern approaches, to suggest that, in effect, we should not be constrained by Enlightenment rationality. Because all scholarly attempts to prove aspects of the Book of Mormon… Read more

July 3, 2015

Dr. Hamblin has specified his grounds rules for any debate over Book of Mormon historicity, in terms that I view as irresponsible and unacceptable. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/enigmaticmirror/2015/06/30/hamblin-20-centrality-of-hermeneutics/  In response, I will present my own assumptions about methodology. This is a substantial post that touches on a number of issues that are critical to any debate. Unless otherwise stated, I will be addressing my comments to Dr. Hamblin, the “you” of what follows. I initially base this discussion on something you said in… Read more

July 3, 2015

In his #13, Jenkins writes: So if the great Book of Mormon civilization is there, why is it not producing hundreds and thousands more inscriptions, in Hebrew, Reformed Egyptian, etc? It sort of suggests that civilization isn’t there, right? Notice that this is a question of expectation, not evidence.  Again it is an epistemological and methodological questions, not an empirical one.  The problem here is that a book shouldn’t be evaluated on what you expect, hope, or wish the evidence for or… Read more

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