(May 23, 2014)
Sometimes I like to focus in on the elements of the scriptures that add to the probability that they are true. These sorts of things may not establish the truth (only the Spirit can do that), but they do increase our intellectual confidence.
For example, Joseph Smith was accused of being a liar and a con-man. Were he a liar and a con-man, he would well know that people cannot be trusted in his society. Why would he then state that once a person stated that they would follow the Gospel they were let free (though they were once military enemies)? That is a very Mesoamerican thing to do, and it is actual a little bit of a Hebrew thing to do, but what it most certainly was not was a 1820s con-man thing to do.