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Saturday, February 18, 2017

Records on Metal Plates

            Many people have heard of the Book of Mormon – Another Testament of Jesus Christ. Most of those people have heard that the Book of Mormon was translated by Joseph Smith from a record kept on metal plates.

            Joseph Smith writes in his history about his experience of obtaining the record and translating it. A heavenly messenger by the name of Moroni visited the young man and told him about some gold plates with a message on them. He showed the plates to Smith and explained the importance of them, but he did not deliver the plates. These are Smith’s words about his experience.

He said there was a book deposited, written upon gold plates, giving an account of the former inhabitants of this continent, and the source form whence they sprang. He also said that the fulness of the everlasting Gospel was contained in it, as delivered by the Savior to the ancient inhabitants.

            Smith continues with his explanation that Moroni visited him every year for four years, and then he delivered the plates to him. Smith translated the record using an Urim and Thummin that was found with the records. He had a third-grade education, yet he was able to translate the record in a period of approximately two months. The only way he could have accomplished this task was with the help of God. When he finished the translation, he returned the plates to Moroni. The resulting translation is known as the Book of Mormon – Another Testament of Jesus Christ.

            In 2015 a team of archaeologists from Brigham Young University reported that they found some plates buried in the Hill Cumorah, which is located in the western part of the state of New York. They noticed a small cave-like cavity while they were searching the area with “advanced metal detectors, lasers and other ground-penetrating imaging technology. They dug through about twelve feet of rocks and dirt. The scientists found signs of ancient use of the cave, a flat stone that looked like an altar, and “a book made of metal plates” made from a copper-gold alloy. There were twelve pages in the book.

            This is not the only “book” found on metal plates in recent years. “This ancient collection of 70 tiny books, their lead pages bound with wire, could unlock some of the secrets of the earliest days of Christianity. Academics are divided as to their authenticity but say that if verified, they could prove as pivotal as the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947.”

            Another set of plates was reportedly found in 2008. This “ancient set of lead tablets showing the earliest portrait of Jesus Christ have proved to be around 2,000 years old, according to experts. The metal `pages,’ held together like a ring binder … [and] make reference to Christ and his disciples.

            There are other reports of metal plates being found, but these three sets prove that ancient people made records on metal plates. Even though the plates translated by Joseph Smith are no longer available to see and handle, there is still a way to determine if they contain the word of God. The last chapter of the record, chapter 10, contains Moroni’s instructions on how to know if the Book of Mormon is true.

4. And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
5. And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

            Anyone who desires to know if the Book of Mormon is the word of God can learn for themselves if they will only read the book and pray sincerely about it. I have studied the Book of Mormon – Another Testament of Jesus Christ many times. In fact, I read from the book every day. I put the promise of Moroni to the test, and I learned for myself that Moroni’s promise works. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I also know that it supports the Bible in its witness of Jesus Christ.

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