There are many aspects of Mor­mon the­ol­o­gy that can be sci­en­tif­i­cal­ly dis­proven. More­over, some LDS teach­ings lack plau­si­bil­i­ty while oth­ers are sim­ply bizarre. The fol­low­ing are sev­er­al exam­ples.

1. Death Pri­or to the Fall: 2 Nephi 2:22 and Alma 12:23–24 state there was no death of any kind (humans, ani­mals, birds, fish, dinosaurs, etc.) on the earth until the “Fall of Adam,” which accord­ing to D&C 77:6–7 occurred 6,000 or 7,000 years ago (depend­ing on how you inter­pret the scrip­ture). And, in case there was any doubt on the Church’s stance, Joseph Field­ing Smith stat­ed as fol­lows:

[T]here was no death of any liv­ing crea­ture before the fall of Adam! … Any­thing con­tra­dic­to­ry to this doc­trine is dia­met­ri­cal­ly opposed to the doc­trines revealed to the Church! If there was any crea­ture increas­ing by prop­a­ga­tion before the fall, then throw away the Book of Mor­mon, deny your faith, the Book of Abra­ham and the rev­e­la­tions in the Doc­trine and Covenants! Our scrip­tures most emphat­i­cal­ly tell us that death came through the fall and has been passed upon all crea­tures includ­ing the earth itself. (Pres­i­dent Joseph Field­ing Smith, The Improve­ment Era, Abstract­ed from Answers to Gospel Ques­tions, Vol. 5, p.112, 116.)

It is sci­en­tif­i­cal­ly estab­lished there has been life and death on earth for bil­lions of years.

2. First Humans: If Adam and Eve are the first humans, how do we explain the 14 oth­er Hominin species who lived and died 35,000 to 250,000 years before Adam?

3. Jared­ite Sto­ry: Joseph Smith said the first group of Book of Mor­mon peo­ple, the Jared­ites, came to Amer­i­ca in eight spe­cial­ly-built barges that resem­bled sub­marines. They were sealed all the way around except for two air holes. One air hole was locat­ed at the top and one on the bot­tom of the barges so as the barges rolled upside down in the water they could occa­sion­al­ly unstop one of the two air holes. These eight, air­tight, rolling, rotat­ing barges con­tained flocks of ani­mals, swarms of bees, and enough pro­vi­sions to enable them to trav­el to the New World over a peri­od of 344 days. All eight ships mirac­u­lous­ly land­ed at the same place even though they had no way to steer them.

4. Noah’s Ark: Sci­en­tif­ic research proves that there was no world­wide flood 4,500 years ago. Plus, it seems implau­si­ble to believe that a 600-year-old Noah built a mas­sive ark with dimen­sions that equate to about 450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet deep to avoid a flood that cov­ered the entire earth in water. More­over, it seems implau­si­ble to believe that Noah and his small fam­i­ly took two of each unclean crea­ture and sev­en of every clean crea­ture and all the food and fresh water that would be need­ed for these ani­mals for six months. It seems equal­ly implau­si­ble to believe that, fol­low­ing the flood, Noah and his fam­i­ly of eight repop­u­lat­ed the entire plan­et.

Sim­ple math­e­mat­ics show that there was insuf­fi­cient room on the ark to house all the ani­mal species found on the plan­et, let alone the food required to feed all of them.

5. Addi­tion­al Scrip­tur­al Claims: Oth­er events/claims that sci­ence has dis­cred­it­ed:

  • Jon­ah and the whale;
  • Tow­er of Babel;
  • Joshua stop­ping the sun;
  • Joshua destroy­ing the walls of Jeri­cho;
  • Peo­ple liv­ing to be over 900-years-old;
  • Peo­ple turn­ing into salt in Sodom & Gomor­rah;
  • As men­tioned in Book of Abra­ham sec­tion, the sun get­ting its light from Kolob.

6. Bizarre Scrip­tur­al Claims and Beliefs: Many LDS beliefs can­on­ized in scrip­ture are just plain bizarre.

a. Abra­ham Lies and Gives Wife to Pharaoh: Abraham’s wife, Sarai, is appar­ent­ly a beau­ti­ful woman and, as a result, Abra­ham (who, at the time, was named Abram) is wor­ried that the Egyp­tians will kill him to steal her. Thus, when Abra­ham and Sarai enter Egypt, Abra­ham asks her to pre­tend that she is his sis­ter and Sarai com­plies. Upon enter­ing Egypt, Pharaoh is informed of Sarai’s beau­ty. Pharaoh then pays Abra­ham with ani­mals and cat­tle so that he can take Sarai into his house­hold as a wife or mis­tress. After doing so, God is appar­ent­ly dis­pleased with the arrange­ment and pun­ish­es Pharaoh’s fam­i­ly with “great plagues.” When Pharaoh dis­cov­ers Sarai is mar­ried, Pharaoh demands that she and Abra­ham imme­di­ate­ly leave, and express­es irri­ta­tion that Abra­ham did not tell him that Sarai was his wife. (Gen­e­sis 12: 10–20.)

b. Lot Offers Daugh­ters to Mob; Lot’s Wife Turned to Salt: Two angels vis­it Lot in Sodom. When word gets out about the angels, a mob of men vis­it Lot’s home demand­ing that they be allowed to rape the two angels. Lot asks the men if they would rather have sex with his two vir­gin daugh­ters instead. The mob of men insist on hav­ing sex with the angels, so God strikes them all blind and tells Lot and his fam­i­ly to leave the city with­out look­ing back because he is going to destroy it. Lot’s wife dis­obeys the instruc­tion, looks back at the city, and is turned into a pil­lar of salt. (Gen­e­sis 19: 1–26.)

c. Jacob Wres­tles With God: Jacob is on a long jour­ney when sud­den­ly he begins wrestling with a man. The fight goes on all night. The man knows he’s los­ing, so he some­how wrench­es Jacob’s hip out of place. Jacob says he won’t let go of the man until the man bless­es him. The man com­plies and then admits that he is, in fact, God. He then changes Jacob’s name to Israel. Fol­low­ing that event, the Bible indi­cates that, from that day for­ward, Israelites did not eat the ten­dons attached to the hip because “God touched the hal­low of Jacob’s thigh.” (Gen­e­sis 32: 22–31.)

d. David and 200 Fore­skins: David wants to mar­ry Saul’s daugh­ter, Michal. Saul doesn’t want David to mar­ry his daugh­ter, so he demands that David pay him an absurd and bizarre price: 100 fore­skins of his ene­mies, the Philistines, hop­ing that David will get killed fight­ing them. But instead, David kills 200 Philistines, cuts off their fore­skins, presents them to Saul, and mar­ries Michal. (1 Samuel 18−25−27.)

e. Eli­jah and the Mock­ing Chil­dren: Some chil­dren mock Eli­jah for being bald. Eli­jah curs­es the chil­dren and, after doing so, two female bears kill 42 of the chil­dren. (2 Kings 2: 23–24.)

f. Ezekiel’s Memo­r­i­al to Siege of Jerusalem: God tells Ezekiel that in memo­r­i­al of the siege of Jerusalem, he needs to build a mod­el of the city, lie down on his left side for 390 days, and then lie his right side for 40 days. Dur­ing this time, God says Ezekiel is only allowed to eat bread, which he has baked over a fire of human feces. Ezekiel protests at the last require­ment, so God lets him use cow feces instead. (Ezekiel 1: 1–16.)

g.  Jesus and the Pos­sessed Pigs: Jesus is walk­ing through a demon-infest­ed tomb when two vio­lent heretics begin flail­ing about in front of him. They sar­cas­ti­cal­ly ask if Jesus has come to tor­ture them for being pos­sessed. Before Jesus can answer, a herd of pigs come thun­der­ing over a near­by hill. For some rea­son, the demons pos­sess­ing the men plead to be allowed to enter the pigs. Jesus per­mits this, but soon after, the demon pigs are dri­ven into the sea where they drown. Peo­ple from the local town are shocked, and they tell Jesus to leave their land imme­di­ate­ly. (Matthew 8: 28–34.)

h.  Ezekiel and the Skele­ton Army: God places Ezekiel in a val­ley full of dry bones and asks Ezekiel: “can these bones live?” Ezekiel replies that only God knows. God then instructs Ezekiel to, among oth­er things, “proph­esy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.” Ezekiel com­plies with the instruc­tion and “an exceed­ing great army” is brought to life. This army then returns to Israel. (Ezekiel 37.)

Series Nav­i­ga­tion: Leav­ing the Church — Eric Nel­son« Leav­ing the Church, Part 11 — Tem­ples & Freema­son­ryLeav­ing the Church, Part 13 — Tes­ti­mo­ny, Truth, and the Holy Ghost »

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