Book of Abraham

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deacon blues
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by deacon blues » Sun Sep 01, 2019 7:05 pm

Wow. Hagoth gets my vote for best explanation. I mean . . .Damn. :o
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Random
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Mon Sep 02, 2019 6:01 pm

Okay, I'm back home now, and am going to delve into the info you guys so generously shared with me. Looks like Hagoth should be first.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
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Random
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Tue Sep 03, 2019 2:32 pm

I've read the links, printed out some of the info (easier to read that way), and just finished studying all of it.

Hagoth, yours was the most informative and comprehensive, not to diminish the other links and info. Everything was helpful.

The picture I see emerge is one of someone who successfully translated a book (however that happened), who then decided to tackle the papyri, using what he believed as the basis for reality (for example, the books he read and probably believed). I believe he accepted whatever thoughts came to his mind as a bona fide translation (and the ignorance of the Egyptian language at the time made it impossible for him to be corrected).

So, you take someone who, in their soul of souls, "knows" something is true, has free reign in the territory of unknown languages and unknown or little-known cultures, and you end up with a book.

I think he believed what he wrote. I think his enthusiasm blinded him like it does so many authors today who write on and on about their pet subjects (and EVERYTHING proves their point).

Thank you all for your help. I now have a totally different perspective on the Book of Abraham.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Yobispo
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Yobispo » Tue Sep 03, 2019 4:56 pm

The title and subtitle are very important, in my mind.

"THE BOOK OF ABRAHAM
TRANSLATED FROM THE PAPYRUS, BY JOSEPH SMITH


A Translation of some ancient Records that have fallen into our hands from the catacombs of Egypt. The writings of Abraham while he was in Egypt, called the Book of Abraham, written by his own hand, upon papyrus."

Joseph told us that it was written in Egypt by Abraham, "by his own hand, upon papyrus". Joseph gives us the location where it was written, who wrote it and what he wrote it on. Yet the church now admits (in the essay, not general conference where believers would hear it) that the papyrus has nothing to do with Abraham at all. I think that the arguments beyond that are a waste of your precious time. After all, if we can't take "by his own hand upon papyrus" literally, then words don't mean anything.

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Red Ryder
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Red Ryder » Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:31 pm

“Hagoth” wrote:4- Olishem is clearly one of Joseph Smith's made up words that he contrived while he was learning Hebrew. It's a conflation of the Hebrew words olah and shem, which means basically "name of a place of sacrifice."
Pronounced “all a sham” right?
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Not Buying It
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Not Buying It » Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:32 am

Yobispo wrote:
Tue Sep 03, 2019 4:56 pm
The title and subtitle are very important, in my mind.

"THE BOOK OF ABRAHAM
TRANSLATED FROM THE PAPYRUS, BY JOSEPH SMITH


A Translation of some ancient Records that have fallen into our hands from the catacombs of Egypt. The writings of Abraham while he was in Egypt, called the Book of Abraham, written by his own hand, upon papyrus."

Joseph told us that it was written in Egypt by Abraham, "by his own hand, upon papyrus". Joseph gives us the location where it was written, who wrote it and what he wrote it on. Yet the church now admits (in the essay, not general conference where believers would hear it) that the papyrus has nothing to do with Abraham at all. I think that the arguments beyond that are a waste of your precious time. After all, if we can't take "by his own hand upon papyrus" literally, then words don't mean anything.
Yobispo for the win! The title and subtitle alone completely demolish all of the apologetic arguments. There is no point in listening to anything they have to say if they are going to argue against this. As Yobispo eloquently point out, the only way to argue it is to assume that words have no real meaning.
"The truth is elegantly simple. The lie needs complex apologia. 4 simple words: Joe made it up. It answers everything with the perfect simplicity of Occam's Razor. Every convoluted excuse withers." - Some guy on Reddit called disposazelph

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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:04 am

Yobispo wrote:
Tue Sep 03, 2019 4:56 pm
Yet the church now admits (in the essay, not general conference where believers would hear it) that the papyrus has nothing to do with Abraham at all.
This is the reason I came to the forum today. I've been thinking about what I learned, and I'll tell you it was a shock to have them plainly say Abraham was not mentioned at all, then go on to say, "But believe he wrote it anyway. It's all mystical."

Denver Snuffer once said (I don't know where to find the exact words, but I heard him say it), essentially, "What if you had access to the gold plates and discovered that what Joseph wrote (the Book of Mormon) didn't match what the plates said?"

It appears that the Book of Abraham came from a creative mind, and possibly the Book of Mormon did, too, We don't have the book (gold plates) he translated from. I suppose he actually had something he believed was an ancient record, and I suppose God wanted a lot of what was in the book said - but I am backing off from the idea that the Book of Mormon came from anywhere except JS's heart and mind. If I'm proven wrong at some future time, great.

I still find the book valuable. I still see that it pegs the current LDS Church (grinding on the face of the poor because of their fine clothing and fine sanctuaries, the incredible pride of the leaders, which trickles down into the peons. and so on).

Also, while I'm on the rant (or whatever it is), I'm bringing up the Word of Wisdom (which has been made into a commandment). The "conspiring men" was spot on, and no doubt wheat was healthy in JS's day - but as a prophetic document, it neglected to prophesy how toxic wheat would become to many people 125+ years down the road.

And signs follow them that believe, but the only healing I can find that seems to have existed was the temporary healing that happened when the people were in a swamp. They were sick, but needed to build a city. They were able to heal enough to do a lot of work, then got sick again. How is that any different than the athlete who breaks a bone during a game, but finishes the game unaware of the break until the game is over?
Last edited by Random on Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:05 am

:nods: Sure does.
Not Buying It wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:32 am
Yobispo for the win! The title and subtitle alone completely demolish all of the apologetic arguments.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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jfro18
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by jfro18 » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:34 am

Random wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:04 am
Also, while I'm on the rant (or whatever it is), I'm bringing up the Word of Wisdom (which has been made into a commandment). The "conspiring men" was spot on, and no doubt wheat was healthy in JS's day - but as a prophetic document, it neglected to prophesy how toxic wheat would become to many people 125+ years down the road.

And signs follow them that believe, but the only healing I can find that seems to have existed was the temporary healing that happened when the people were in a swamp. They were sick, but needed to build a city. They were able to heal enough to do a lot of work, then got sick again. How is that any different than the athlete who breaks a bone during a game, but finishes the game unaware of the break until the game is over?
I think the Word of Wisdom suffers from a lot of the same issues that the Book of Abraham does actually.

Joseph claims it's a revelation, but we know that everything he talked about was spoken of in his day - that's the reason "hot drinks" are in there because there was a fear at the time that hot drinks would injure you as you drank them... it's why hot soups were banned early on.

But the problem is that the WoW does *nothing* to predict anything in the future. Imagine how prophetic it would've been if Joseph Smith had said God told him that all members should boil water before drinking it? In fact, shortly after Joseph received the WoW about 12 members died because they did not know about boiling water. That alone says more about the WoW than anything else to me.

It's a document that can be squarely placed in the beliefs of his time, with no value to those before or after it... much like how the Book of Abraham discusses astronomy, race, etc.

That's also true of the Book of Mormon as well, but it's really the overarching problem for Joseph Smith - none of his prophecies amounted to anything, and almost all of his revelations are specific to his milieu, which makes it easy in hindsight to show how he produced all of these works.

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Yobispo
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Yobispo » Wed Sep 04, 2019 2:07 pm

jfro18 wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:34 am
Random wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:04 am
Also, while I'm on the rant (or whatever it is), I'm bringing up the Word of Wisdom (which has been made into a commandment). The "conspiring men" was spot on, and no doubt wheat was healthy in JS's day - but as a prophetic document, it neglected to prophesy how toxic wheat would become to many people 125+ years down the road.

And signs follow them that believe, but the only healing I can find that seems to have existed was the temporary healing that happened when the people were in a swamp. They were sick, but needed to build a city. They were able to heal enough to do a lot of work, then got sick again. How is that any different than the athlete who breaks a bone during a game, but finishes the game unaware of the break until the game is over?
I think the Word of Wisdom suffers from a lot of the same issues that the Book of Abraham does actually.

Joseph claims it's a revelation, but we know that everything he talked about was spoken of in his day - that's the reason "hot drinks" are in there because there was a fear at the time that hot drinks would injure you as you drank them... it's why hot soups were banned early on.

But the problem is that the WoW does *nothing* to predict anything in the future. Imagine how prophetic it would've been if Joseph Smith had said God told him that all members should boil water before drinking it? In fact, shortly after Joseph received the WoW about 12 members died because they did not know about boiling water. That alone says more about the WoW than anything else to me.

It's a document that can be squarely placed in the beliefs of his time, with no value to those before or after it... much like how the Book of Abraham discusses astronomy, race, etc.

That's also true of the Book of Mormon as well, but it's really the overarching problem for Joseph Smith - none of his prophecies amounted to anything, and almost all of his revelations are specific to his milieu, which makes it easy in hindsight to show how he produced all of these works.
WoW - show me the revelation that changed it to a commandment. Every Mormon can cite Section 89, and it clearly says NOT a commandment. I've ranted on this one many times, including in a podcast that the SCMC could have listened to, that the current D&C Seminary teacher's manual on Sec 89 cites a revelation to John Taylor that changed it to a revelation. The Taylor revelation is another %$#@ rabbit hole because you find that not only did he get revelations for the church, they even printed and circulated some of them back then. But to the point, the one they cite has nothing to do with WoW. It's a smokescreen. They simply cannot be honest about anything.

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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Spicy McHaggis » Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:44 pm

The church knows the BOA isn't real. If they really believed the papyrus was truly written by Abraham, they would have a huge museum to display it.
If it was really written by Abraham's own hand, then about half the world's population would come to take a look. It would be considered the greatest archaeological discovery of all time, by some people.

Instead it's hidden away in a vault. Until recently the church pretended it didn't even have the papyrus.

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Random
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:50 pm

Yobispo wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 2:07 pm
WoW - show me the revelation that changed it to a commandment. Every Mormon can cite Section 89, and it clearly says NOT a commandment.

Man, don't get me started on that! "Here's a commandment. You've got to obey it." Looks at it: "It says here it isn't a commandment."

They simply cannot be honest about anything.
Sigh. :nods_head:
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:53 pm

jfro18 wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:34 am
But the problem is that the WoW does *nothing* to predict anything in the future. Imagine how prophetic it would've been if Joseph Smith had said God told him that all members should boil water before drinking it? In fact, shortly after Joseph received the WoW about 12 members died because they did not know about boiling water. That alone says more about the WoW than anything else to me.
I did not know that happened. It definitely would show a God-authorship more than the revelation we have.

I find I am becoming more and more disillusioned. But I cannot go back to not knowing - cannot, as in "I wouldn't want to even if I could."
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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jfro18
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by jfro18 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 3:01 pm

Random wrote:
Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:53 pm
jfro18 wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:34 am
But the problem is that the WoW does *nothing* to predict anything in the future. Imagine how prophetic it would've been if Joseph Smith had said God told him that all members should boil water before drinking it? In fact, shortly after Joseph received the WoW about 12 members died because they did not know about boiling water. That alone says more about the WoW than anything else to me.
I did not know that happened. It definitely would show a God-authorship more than the revelation we have.

I find I am becoming more and more disillusioned. But I cannot go back to not knowing - cannot, as in "I wouldn't want to even if I could."
I didn't realize the timing until I was doing the Saints chapter-by-chapter review and noticed that soon after the WoW a bunch of saints died (I think 12) and then dozens more got horribly sick because they didn't know to boil water. The WoW was recorded in December of 1833 and the outbreak was July 1834.

And to be fair, no one knew it at the time... but that's why you'd expect a prophet of God to get a warning that would truly be a law of health to the church and world. And it's such a simple thing - not even after all those deaths did Joseph get that revelation.

I totally get what you're saying though - it's a pretty rare occurrence when people can learn all of this and stay believing just because of how difficult it is to put the toothpaste back in the tube. But in the end I wouldn't want it any other way, even if it has caused a lot of anxiety and stress with family.

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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Sun Sep 08, 2019 1:29 pm

The more time passes, the more disillusioned I feel. The Book of Abraham breaks into all belief that JS did more than channel something going on in his imagination. None of the many other things I've learned have put such a hole in me. But the evidence cannot be refuted without doing some mental gymnastics.

For the halibut, I looked up the names of Egyptian Gods. This link was the best one:
Egyptian Gods - the complete list
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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alas
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by alas » Sun Sep 08, 2019 3:33 pm

Random wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 1:29 pm
The more time passes, the more disillusioned I feel. The Book of Abraham breaks into all belief that JS did more than channel something going on in his imagination. None of the many other things I've learned have put such a hole in me. But the evidence cannot be refuted without doing some mental gymnastics.

For the halibut, I looked up the names of Egyptian Gods. This link was the best one:
Egyptian Gods - the complete list
One of my favorite lines right there, “for the halibut.” I had a friend in high school who used it all the time. And if he needed to get passed, instead of saying “ ‘xcuse me.” He said, “scqeeze me. He had a bunch of others.

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jfro18
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by jfro18 » Sun Sep 08, 2019 5:05 pm

Random wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 1:29 pm
The more time passes, the more disillusioned I feel. The Book of Abraham breaks into all belief that JS did more than channel something going on in his imagination. None of the many other things I've learned have put such a hole in me. But the evidence cannot be refuted without doing some mental gymnastics.

For the halibut, I looked up the names of Egyptian Gods. This link was the best one:
Egyptian Gods - the complete list
When I first started researching everything, the things that really shocked me were the First Vision and polygamy because I hadn't been taught any of it and I just couldn't believe that the First Vision changed over time.

But once I read some rebuttals the First Vision became less of an issue for me, but the Book of Abraham became worse and worse as I dug into it. And the real problem is that if you take Joseph Smith at his word, he claimed without question it was a direct translation and the manuscripts illustrate that as well.

And once I came to the conclusion that he made it up, then it made looking at the Book of Mormon a lot easier to see how he did it... and then there was no going back.

I think that's why the BoA is such a testimony killer - we have all of the source materials to compare to, and there is just nothing in there that helps Joseph's case in any way, and the apologetics have been debunked time after time because we have the source materials.

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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:00 pm

Alas, I knew someone who said that all the time, too. :)
I think that's why the BoA is such a testimony killer - we have all of the source materials to compare to, and there is just nothing in there that helps Joseph's case in any way, and the apologetics have been debunked time after time because we have the source materials.
Exactly. It made me wonder what else was made up. Like I said, the Book of Mormon speaks to me, so I'll keep it (so to speak), but I cannot look at it the same way now.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Random » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:05 pm

Hagoth wrote:
Fri Aug 30, 2019 5:05 pm
Everything I have to say is in my annotation of the essay. Please read it and hit me with any questions or objections you come away with:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Logow ... 0qOhleGrdc
Have you read the essay on the new site? Is it the same? I'm asking because I can't recall all you wrote (no photographic memory here), but in a convo with someone else, I looked up the essay and found this just after the Olishem explanation and just before the conclusion, which I didn't recall you addressing.
Joseph Smith’s explanations of the facsimiles of the book of Abraham contain additional earmarks of the ancient world. Facsimile 1 and Abraham 1:17 mention the idolatrous god Elkenah. This deity is not mentioned in the Bible, yet modern scholars have identified it as being among the gods worshipped by ancient Mesopotamians.39 Joseph Smith represented the four figures in figure 6 of facsimile 2 as “this earth in its four quarters.” A similar interpretation has been argued by scholars who study identical figures in other ancient Egyptian texts.40 Facsimile 1 contains a crocodile deity swimming in what Joseph Smith called “the firmament over our heads.” This interpretation makes sense in light of scholarship that identifies Egyptian conceptions of heaven with “a heavenly ocean.”41

The book of Abraham is consistent with various details found in nonbiblical stories about Abraham that circulated in the ancient world around the time the papyri were likely created. In the book of Abraham, God teaches Abraham about the sun, the moon, and the stars. “I show these things unto thee before ye go into Egypt,” the Lord says, “that ye may declare all these words.”42 Ancient texts repeatedly refer to Abraham instructing the Egyptians in knowledge of the heavens. For example, Eupolemus, who lived under Egyptian rule in the second century B.C.E., wrote that Abraham taught astronomy and other sciences to the Egyptian priests.43 A third-century papyrus from an Egyptian temple library connects Abraham with an illustration similar to facsimile 1 in the book of Abraham.44 A later Egyptian text, discovered in the 20th century, tells how the Pharaoh tried to sacrifice Abraham, only to be foiled when Abraham was delivered by an angel. Later, according to this text, Abraham taught members of the Pharaoh’s court through astronomy.45 All these details are found in the book of Abraham.

Other details in the book of Abraham are found in ancient traditions located across the Near East. These include Terah, Abraham’s father, being an idolator; a famine striking Abraham’s homeland; Abraham’s familiarity with Egyptian idols; and Abraham’s being younger than 75 years old when he left Haran, as the biblical account states. Some of these extrabiblical elements were available in apocryphal books or biblical commentaries in Joseph Smith’s lifetime, but others were confined to nonbiblical traditions inaccessible or unknown to 19th-century Americans.46

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/stu ... m?lang=eng
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Palerider
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Re: Book of Abraham

Post by Palerider » Tue Sep 10, 2019 9:35 pm

Random wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:05 pm

Have you read the essay on the new site? Is it the same? I'm asking because I can't recall all you wrote (no photographic memory here), but in a convo with someone else, I looked up the essay and found this just after the Olishem explanation and just before the conclusion, which I didn't recall you addressing.

.....The book of Abraham is consistent with various details found in nonbiblical stories about Abraham that circulated in the ancient world. For example, Eupolemus, who lived under Egyptian rule in the second century B.C.E., wrote that Abraham taught astronomy and other sciences to the Egyptian priests.43 A third-century papyrus from an Egyptian temple library......

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/stu ... m?lang=eng
And here is the problem with this type of apologetic. The church sites this stuff as if we should give it all reverence and veracity.

The fact is it is likely all made up mythology about one of Epolemus' favorite heroes, Abraham. What....you don't think there were writers in the 2nd century BCE who made up legendary tales about their heroes?

The writings of Eupolemus are only fragmentary writings that are found mentioned within the writings of Eusibius of Ceasaria. And of those fragments only part are actually considered those of Eupolemus. The rest, which happen to be the ones where Abraham supposedly teaches the Egyptians about astronomy are considered pseudo-epolemus. No one knows for sure who wrote them...

What's even more interesting is that if one reads all of the writings of pseudo-epolemus, we find that Abraham also taught the Egyptians about astrology! Interesting that the apologists don't mention that fact.

So I would ask the church, "Are you telling me that Abraham was also an astrologer?"

I'm sure given enough time the apologists would come up with some plausible way of explaining how astrology is another way for righteous prophets to receive revelation and that it's actually a great thing that Abraham had this gift. But you see every time they do that, we find ourselves a little further down the rabbit hole; having to go deeper and deeper to keep on believing.

There is nothing that gives credence to these ancient made up stories of Abraham. They're definitely not considered scripture.

This is also analogous to what apologists try to do with the Masonic rituals they claim have come down since the time of Solomon's temple. There is nothing....zero....nada concrete to support anything of the sort. A few stupid Masonic legends and we're supposed to hang our entire belief system on them. Scholars who have no agenda have verified that the Masonic rituals date back only to what......the 15th or 16th century?

But let's all hang our hats on mythological stories created in 300 BCE and 1600 CE to support what we want to believe in 2019....

Makes total sense. :roll:
Last edited by Palerider on Wed Sep 11, 2019 8:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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