Monday, September 14, 2015

Mosiah 9-10

(August 29, 2014)
                I had a couple of thoughts through these chapters.  The first was on the very basic nature of unreliable narrators.  Sometimes I see those who think that just because the Book of Mormon is scripture, edited by a prophet and translated by the power of God, it must be infallible.  I see no such evidence of that (in fact, it openly recognizes that there might be mistakes that are the mistakes of men). This doesn’t make it untrue or in any way diminish its position as scripture.

                One way in which the fallibility of men impacts the Book of Mormon is in the unreliable narrations that sometimes pops up.  Mormon is notorious for this – he will impute motivations for his enemies or those against the Gospel that he could not possibly know (likely – although I suppose the Lord could have revealed it to him).  Zeniff is another example – as you read through his record, it is hard to deny that he writes absolutely everything in terms most favorable to him and least favorable to everyone else.        

                My other thought was the actions of the King of the Lamanites in stirring up rebellion against Zeniff.  Once again, this really only makes sense if you view the area as having an indigenous people.  When the King of the Lamanites withdrew from the land, he pulled his Lamanite ruling caste (which were replaced by a Nephite or Mulekite ruling caste).  When rebellions were being stoked, he was working with that indigenous population to turn them against Zeniff.  That is the only way the text makes sense, and it matches (of course) with what we know about Mesoamerica during this time period.

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