Canonicity of the Book of Mormon


The Mormons propose a curious illustration of how the gospel was restored to man after it had been “lost.” In September 1823, Joseph Smith was visited by a heavenly messenger [an angel] named Moroni.[4] He appeared to him much like the angels did to the Church leaders in the New Testament.[5] Moroni informed Smith that God had some special work for him and spoke of a record which existed containing the ancient inhabitants of the American continent, buried in a nearby hill.[6] He told him that the record made known the full and complete gospel of Jesus Christ.[7]

According to their account, many good people believed in Christ and tried to understand His gospel, but they did not have the fullness of the truth.[8] They also lacked the priesthood authority to baptize and perform other saving ordinances at that time.[9] Everyone had inherited a state of apostasy and each generation was influenced by what the previous one had passed on.[10] Smith’s first vision from Moroni marked the beginning of the restoration of Jesus Christ’s Church to the earth.[11]

Smith received the record in September 1827 which was written on thin plates of gold.[12] The angel Moroni led him to the spot where he found the golden plates.[13] He translated the book into English by God’s inspiration and eventually called the text the Book of Mormon.[14] It is named after an ancient prophet named Mormon who assembled the sacred tome.[15] The book was supposedly another testament of Christ and verifies the reality and divinity of Him.[16] Thus, it is another witness which confirms the validity and truth of the Bible.[17] Those in the LDS faith claim that it is a powerful witness of Jesus Christ and helps man understand His teachings, including those found in the Bible.[18]

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