Episodes

2016 FairMormon Conference  

The FairMormon Conference is an annual event that brings together scholars, apologists, and interested individuals from a variety of areas. Each comes with a unique perspective on history, science, or theology, and all come with a desire to help defend the gospel and share evidences of its truth. On this week's podcast, FairMormon volunteer Trevor Holyoak discusses the 18th annual FairMormon Conference on August 4 and 5, 2016 at the Utah Valley Convention Center at 220 West Center Street #200, Provo, UT 84601.
Click here to register!

The FairMormon Conference is a great way to get informed. This year's conference is geared toward providing the information and answers you need to faithfully deal with the criticisms leveled against the Church and gospel.

 

Trevor Holyoak graduated magna cum laude from Weber State University with a BS in computer science. He currently works as a programmer and has created award-winning LDS-oriented Android apps. He is on the management team for FairMormon and was the 2014 recipient of the John Taylor Defender of the Faith Award. Trevor lives in Cedar Hills, Utah, with his wife, Janna, and 4 children.

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2016 FairMormon Conference  

The FairMormon Conference is an annual event that brings together scholars, apologists, and interested individuals from a variety of areas. Each comes with a unique perspective on history, science, or theology, and all come with a desire to help defend the gospel and share evidences of its truth. On this week's podcast, FairMormon volunteer Mike Parker discusses the 18th annual FairMormon Conference on August 4 and 5, 2016 at the Utah Valley Convention Center at 220 West Center Street #200, Provo, UT 84601.

Conference sessions begin at 9:00 am each day and end at 5:45 pm. Badge pickup, including same-day registration, is available before the first session each day. Dress is business casual.

The FairMormon Conference is a great way to get informed. This year's conference is geared toward providing the information and answers you need to faithfully deal with the criticisms leveled against the Church and gospel.
Click here to register!
Mike Parker is a business and marketing analyst with twenty years’ experience in the financial services industry. He is a returning student currently pursuing a BS in Business Finance from Dixie State University in St. George, Utah. He also has eight years’ experience in corporate training, and currently teaches an adult religion class in the Hurricane, Utah, area. Mike and his wife, Denise, have three children.

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Faith and Reason 75: Degrees of Glory  

From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
by Michael Ash
Christ spoke of many mansions (John 14:2) and Paul compared the difference between the glory of the sun, moon, and stars with the different glory of those at the resurrection. Richard Anderson explains, "[Paul] sometimes wrote 'heaven' of the place where God dwells, but he used 'heavens' twice as much. Paul normally used the plural, even though the King James Version sometimes writes the singular for the Greek plural. For Paul, Christ is exalted 'far above the heavens' (Ephesians 4:10). If Christ is literally 'higher than the heavens' (Hebrews 7:26), he is in the highest heaven.
Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.
Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.
Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 75: Degrees of Glory appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 74: Salvation for the Dead  

Jesus Christ taught that baptism is essential to the salvation of all who have lived on earth (see John 3:5). Many people, however, have died without being baptized. Others were baptized without proper authority. Because God is merciful, He has prepared a way for all people to receive the blessings of baptism. By performing proxy baptisms in behalf of those who have died, Church members offer these blessings to deceased ancestors. Individuals can then choose to accept or reject what has been done in their behalf.
From LDS.org: https://www.lds.org/scriptures/gs/salvation-for-the-dead?lang=eng
Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.
Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.
Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 74: Salvation for the Dead appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 73: Sacred Vestments  

To those outside a particular faith, the rituals and clothing may seem unfamiliar. But for the participants they can stir the deepest feelings of the soul, motivate them to do good, even shape the course of a whole life of service.

The nun’s habit. The priest’s cassock. The Jewish prayer shawl. The Muslim’s skullcap. The saffron robes of the Buddhist monk. All are part of a rich tapestry of human devotion to God.

Not all such religious vestments are on public display. Some are seen only in places of worship. Temple robes of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, known as the robes of the holy priesthood, are worn only inside Mormon temples and reserved for the highest sacraments of the faith. White symbolizes purity. There is no insignia or rank. The most senior apostle and the newest member are indistinguishable when dressed in the same way. Men and women wear similar clothing. The simple vestments combine religious symbolism with echoes of antiquity reflected in ancient writings from the book of Exodus.

From the LDS Newsroom: http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/article/temple-garments
Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.
Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.
Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 73: Sacred Vestments appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 72: Secret Teachings Among the Apostles  

Christ with the Twelve Apostles by Jacques Tissot
From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
by Michael R. Ash
Although Jesus often gave sermons that lasted for hours, all of his words in the New Testament can be read in about a half hour. Both the recently discovered Nag Hammadi Library and the rediscovered writings of the early Church Fathers include many quotes that they attribute to Jesus but are not found in our Bible.
Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.
Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Television Host, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.
Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 72: Secret Teachings Among the Apostles appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 71: Premortal Existence  

From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
by: Michael R. Ash
In the Pearl of Great Price, we learn that man had a premortal existence in the Spirit World (See Abraham 3: 22-23). This is one of the beliefs that distinguish Latter-day Saints from other Christians. In the book of Jeremiah, however, we find a hint at this same doctrine. The Lord, speaking to Jeremiah said, "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet to the nations" (Jeremiah 1:5).
Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.
Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Television Host, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.
Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 71: Premortal Existence appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Fair Issues 101: Types of evidence and the Book of Mormon  

In this installment brother Ash discusses the basic techniques used to establish different types of evidence and the Book of Mormon.

The full text of this article can be found at Deseret News online.

Brother Ash is author of the book Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt, as well as the book, of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith. Both books are available for purchase online through the FairMormon Bookstore. Tell your friends about the Mormon Fair-Cast. Share a link on your Facebook page and help increase the popularity of the Mormon Fair-Cast by subscribing to this podcast in iTunes, and by rating it and writing a review.

The views and opinions expressed in the podcast may not reflect those of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or that of FairMormon

The post Fair Issues 101: Types of evidence and the Book of Mormon appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 70: The Restoration  

From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
by: Michael R. Ash
During the Great Apostasy, the Lord withdrew His divine priesthood authority from the earth. Existing churches did not have the power to lead people to the true knowledge of God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. Parts of the scriptures went missing or were corrupted, and no one had the authority to confer the gift of the Holy Ghost or perform necessary priesthood ordinances.

The gospel of Jesus Christ was restored by administering angels in 1820 through Joseph Smith. However unlike the Church in times past, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will not be overcome by general apostasy. The scriptures teach that the Church will never again be destroyed (D&C 138:44; Daniel 2:44).

Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.

Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Television Host, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.

Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 70: The Restoration appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Fair Issues 100: Evidence versus proof  

In this installment brother Ash explains the differences between what we consider as evidence versus proof in religious matters.

The full text of this article can be found at Deseret News online.

Brother Ash is author of the book Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt, as well as the book, of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith. Both books are available for purchase online through the FairMormon Bookstore. Tell your friends about the Mormon Fair-Cast. Share a link on your Facebook page and help increase the popularity of the Mormon Fair-Cast by subscribing to this podcast in iTunes, and by rating it and writing a review.

The views and opinions expressed in the podcast may not reflect those of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or that of FairMormon

 

The post Fair Issues 100: Evidence versus proof appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Fair Issues 99: Emotion is part of testimony and decision making  

In this article brother Ash discusses how emotions play an integral part in our decision making process.

The full text of this article can be found at Deseret News online.

Brother Ash is author of the book Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt, as well as the book, of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith. Both books are available for purchase online through the FairMormon Bookstore. Tell your friends about the Mormon Fair-Cast. Share a link on your Facebook page and help increase the popularity of the Mormon Fair-Cast by subscribing to this podcast in iTunes, and by rating it and writing a review.

The views and opinions expressed in the podcast may not reflect those of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or that of FairMormon

The post Fair Issues 99: Emotion is part of testimony and decision making appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 69: Plain and Precious Parts  

From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
by: Michael R. Ash
Most Christians today and in Joseph Smith's day believe that the Bible is complete --that it contains everything that God intended, and that no new scriptures should be added. From Joseph's translation of the Book of Mormon, however, we learn that the Bible is not complete and that many important parts are missing. Today's scholarship sides with Joseph Smith. The scriptures we have today are the result of actions taken in the second century AD by those who had a different Bible than those at the end of that same century.

Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.

Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Television Host, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.

Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 69: Plain and Precious Parts appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Fair Issues 98: What critics don’t understand about testimony  

In this weeks issue brother Ash talks about how testimonies are balanced with reason and spiritual confirmation.

The full text of this article can be found at Deseret News online. The Deseret News is offline for this article as of 4/25/16.  Will update link when this issues becomes available.

Brother Ash is author of the book Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt, as well as the book, of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith. Both books are available for purchase online through the FairMormon Bookstore. Tell your friends about the Mormon Fair-Cast. Share a link on your Facebook page and help increase the popularity of the Mormon Fair-Cast by subscribing to this podcast in iTunes, and by rating it and writing a review.

The views and opinions expressed in the podcast may not reflect those of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or that of FairMormon

The post Fair Issues 98: What critics don’t understand about testimony appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

4th Watch 23: The challenge of discipleship  

Back in the day, late 60’s and the early 70’s just across the border in Rosarito Beach, Baja California the big “X” XERB was one of the flamethrower am radio stations of its day. The big “X” was the brainchild of Robert Weston Smith.  Bob Smith?  So who is Bob Smith?  If you don’t recognize the name you just might remember the voice.

It’s the “Wolfman.”  He was one of the most successful disk jockeys of his day.  You might remember him in the movie “American Graffiti” done by George Lucas in 1973.  The Wolfman made a considerable amount of money on the big “X” and most of it came from the late night programs that came to be known as the prayer shawl preachers or PSP’s as I call them.

At one point Wolfman Jack was said to be making over $50,000.00 a month from the revenue generated by these programs.  A considerable amount of cash back then which did NOT go unnoticed by the Mexican authorities. Kind of like when Han Solo said to Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars movie, “ancient weapons and hokey religions are no match for a good blaster at your side kid.” The blaster of the PSP’s made the bucks.  I’m not sure how the radio station changed hands but the Wolfman got pushed out and things changed.

Running at 250,000 watts XERB could be heard from border to border.  American stations could only broadcast at 50,000 watts of power due to FCC regulations so the big “X” was quite an adventure for am radio.

If we go back further in time the most powerful commercial radio station in the ever in the USA was WLW in the (700KHz AM) in Cincinnati Ohio, which during certain times in the 1930’s broadcast 500,000 watts of radiated power.  At night, it covered half the globe.  Neighbors within the vicinity of the transmitter heard the audio in their pots, pans and mattresses, literally.  I’m providing a link in the show notes for those who may be interested in the history of WLW.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/wlw

Today we have the new and improved border blasters and you’re listening to one of them now.  The internet podcast.  Just about anyone with a computer and microphone can produce and air podcasts.  For that matter you can effectively have your own TV station.  It’s called YouTube.  All without the need for mass quantities of money.

Bob Dylan sang the lyrics of our day thinking he was just talking about the days in which he lived.  That was in 1964.  Over fifty years ago. Truly the times are a changing and I would suspect that in another fifty years our todays might seem as foolish to those who look upon us from their enlightened era with mild if not outright amusement.

Some things don’t change and for good reason.  Being a disciple of Jesus Christ is one of those things that doesn’t change.  The way we show our discipleship does and should change to adapt to the environment and culture in which we live.  What may be welcomed in Mormon Central aka Salt Lake City Utah may not be well received in another part of the world but our intent should always be the same. To represent our Lord and Savior and his loving and kindness by using our hands as His hands and the tone of our voice as He would talk to those in need of His care.

In October of 2006 brother James A. Faust, second counselor in the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints offered this view of discipleship.

Our responsibility is clear for those who have received the testimony of Jesus Christ.  To become His disciples.

In doing so I try hard not to denigrate another’s testimony or their faith tradition.  In the opening of this podcast I referred to the “prayer shawl preachers” in a manner that some may see or in this case hear as unacceptable . Truth is often in the ear of the beholder because our intent is interpreted by the distance from our heads to our hearts and that takes time.  Oh, I know what you think I meant but I’m not sure what you heard is what was in my heart.

Fair Issues 97: Proof is in the eye of the Beholder  

In this instalment brother Ash sets for forth evidences, proofs and faith concerning the Book of Mormon archaeology.

The full text of this article can be found at Deseret News online.

Brother Ash is author of the book Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt, as well as the book, of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith. Both books are available for purchase online through the FairMormon Bookstore. Tell your friends about the Mormon Fair-Cast. Share a link on your Facebook page and help increase the popularity of the Mormon Fair-Cast by subscribing to this podcast in iTunes, and by rating it and writing a review.

The views and opinions expressed in the podcast may not reflect those of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or that of FairMormon

 

The post Fair Issues 97: Proof is in the eye of the Beholder appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 68: The Apostasy  

From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
by Michael R. Ash
The apostasy was already under way while some of the apostles still lived and they warned that worse times would come after they were gone. As long as they were around, they could correct erroneous doctrines and confound false teachers, but they knew and prophesied of times to come when the church would go astray. Through the prophet Joseph Smith, our Father in Heaven and His Son Jesus Christ restored the fulness of the gospel. The true Church of Jesus Christ is on the earth again today. Because of the Restoration, the teachings and ordinances necessary for salvation are available to all people.

Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.

Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Television Host, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.

Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 68: The Apostasy appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

4th Watch 22: The High Cost of Resentment  

4th Watch 22: The High Cost of Resentment

This podcast is a follow up to my previous one on the “false dichotomy of Truth.”  If you haven’t listened to it I suggest you do so because this will make more sense if you do.

Real truth or false truth…false truth?  How can a truth be false?  Well, that’s why you need to listen to my previous podcast.  It explains how “truth” can be manipulated to put forth an agenda that can distort and even completely misrepresent the original intent or understanding of just about anything.  Think, Dihydrogen Monoxide!

As always in my podcasts I tend to add many colorful alliterations that do not appear in the text of this blog.  Therefore one’s listening experience may differ from just reading the printed words.  J

What does this have to do with resentment?  Good question.  Resentments can arise from what we perceive to be the truth but then learn that we were deceived, cheated or betrayed in trusting whatever it is at the time. Now, when it comes to religion trust is paramount.  We’re talking about God here and not some misleading advertising for a new and improved product.

I saw a gas station sign that listed three types of gas.  Regular, Plus and “V” Power.  Plus?  What’s plus.  This is gasoline.  What are you going to put in it?  Dynamite?  V Power?  What the heck is V Power?  Is it better than H Power?  What about X Power?

Worse than gas grades that are less than clear I witnessed a car that had a really strange placard on its side that said “Blue Drive.”  Blue Drive?  What the #@ll is Blue Drive?  Is it better than Red Drive or Green Drive?  Wouldn’t White Drive be more clean and wholesome? What’s worse is what kind of gas do you put in a Blue Drive car? Plus or “V” Power?  The cloud of nebulous advertisements boggle the mind.

There are things in life more important than what kind of car you drive and what type of gas you fuel it with.  Resentments over such trivial illustrations are useless.  Someone’s always going to have the next deluxe XB-134 super thing.  So, let’s move on to something more important in life like religion and God.

Like I said before, trust is paramount and when we feel that trust has been violated, resentment can set in.  Bishop so and so did this or that.  Stake president “X” who my brother works for was caught doing…fill in the blank…I heard that Joseph Smith had lots of wives and some as young as fourteen.  Brigham Young said that…another fill in the blank from one of his un-prophet like utterances…the list is extensive for what we thought we knew but latter learn was not the “whole” truth.

At this point I would like to illustrate this concept with a personal experience.  A long time ago, in a Mormon colony far, far away I learned that Joseph Smith had in his possession several what we call today “Seer Stones.”  They were used by the prophet on various occasions to translate the word of God that would become the cannon of the Church or as we would say today.  The “Holy Scriptures.”  I saw these devices as some kind of mystical connection with God that allowed the one who was authorized to use the stones to come somehow into Gods presence and commune with the divine.  Some super engineered and crafted substance beyond our earthly experience and understood only by God himself.   Anybody else held this view of the “seer Stones?” Well, just recently the Church published an article in the Ensign magazine about the seer stone.  I’m providing this link if you would like to read it.  Yeah, so what?  Well, when I first looked at the picture I viewed it through the lens of my God created “super” stone.  As I continued looking at it I realized that it was just a rock.  It only took about fifteen to twenty seconds for my mind to adjust.  It took much longer for my heart and soul to adjust.  It’s a rock!

Sometimes our perceptions create our reality and my reality had to change when faced with this new i...

Faith and Reason 67: More Book of Abraham Evidences  

From the book: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith
By Michael R. Ash
Non-LDS Near Eastern scholar David Noel Freedman said that he had never encountered an Abraham account where the patriarch himself was threatened with sacrifice until he saw the claim in the Book of Abraham. Upon further reflection he acknowledged that a similar tradition existed in an ancient Abrahamic document, but an English translation was not available until the 1890's.  What are the chances that Joseph Smith could have gotten so many things right by mere guesswork?

Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.

Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Television Host, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.

Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 67: More Book of Abraham Evidences appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Fair Issues 96: Mapping Book of Mormon Lands  

In this episode brother Ash relates how modern mapping may differ from ancient techniques used to define location and direction.

As Dr. Lawrence Poulsen points out, in most ancient languages, the words translated into English as "east" nearly always refer to the rising of the sun, while "west" refers to setting of the sun.

"The concept of direction in ancient cultures was centered on the movement of the sun, in particular its movement relative to the individual's location.  This is an (egocentric: person centered) rather than a geocentric (earth centered) view of direction.  In other words, it is based on personal orientation rather than on contemporary global map orientation."

The full text of this article can be found at Deseret News online.

Brother Ash is author of the book Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt, as well as the book, of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting the Prophet Joseph Smith. Both books are available for purchase online through the FairMormon Bookstore. Tell your friends about the Mormon Fair-Cast. Share a link on your Facebook page and help increase the popularity of the Mormon Fair-Cast by subscribing to this podcast in iTunes, and by rating it and writing a review.

The views and opinions expressed in the podcast may not reflect those of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or that of FairMormon

 

The post Fair Issues 96: Mapping Book of Mormon Lands appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

Faith and Reason 66: Heliocentric Universe  

According to the Book of Abraham, the highest celestial objects "govern" the objects below them (see Abraham 3:3, and Facimile 2, fig. 5). Likewise, when we turn to the Apocalypse of Abraham, we find that God's throne is in the highest of heavens and that His commands are passed down by angels through the various levels of heaven. Each of the higher levels governs and commands the lower levels. While such a cosmology makes little sense from the heliocentric cosmology of Joseph Smith's milieu, it makes perfect sense from the ancient cosmologies accepted by the ancient people of the Near East.

Michael R. Ash is the author of: Of Faith and Reason: 80 Evidences Supporting The Prophet Joseph Smith. He is the owner and operator of MormonFortress.com and is on the management team for FairMormon. He has been published in Sunstone, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, the Maxwell Institute’s FARMS Review, and is the author of Shaken Faith Syndrome: Strengthening One’s Testimony in the Face of Criticism and Doubt. He and his wife live in Ogden, Utah, and have three daughters.

Julianne Dehlin Hatton has worked as a News Director at an NPR affiliate, Television Host, News Anchor, and Airborne Traffic Reporter. She graduated with an MSSc from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 2008. Julianne and her husband Thomas are the parents of four children.

Music for Faith and Reason is provided by Arthur Hatton.

The post Faith and Reason 66: Heliocentric Universe appeared first on FairMormon Blog.

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