Part 2: CES Letter Book of Mormon Questions [Section A]
by Sarah Allen
When I prayed about how best to start these, the answer I received was to lay a foundation first. If you know up front that the author of the Letter is telling one story to the public and another story to his friends in private, that it was specifically arranged to be as manipulative as possible, that it was not one man’s quest for answers to unanswerable questions but a group effort to collect every criticism they could find against the Church, and that the author is doing his best to purposely overwhelm you and destroy your faith, it helps you frame the information and process it more rationally than you would otherwise. When you’re aware of the slant, you can mentally guard against it.
Now that the foundation has been laid, it’s time to jump into the questions/concerns themselves. Before I do, though, I just wanted to say one thing: I’m just one person putting these posts together. I’m not a scholar, I’m not an apologist, I’m not a professional, and I’m not an expert. I’m just a girl who likes theology and history, particularly Church history, and wants to help support people in their faith. These posts are far from perfect, and they are not all-encompassing. I miss stuff. I read a lot, but there are a lot of things out there I haven’t read, and there are a lot of sources I haven’t come across. You’re all going to find sources I haven’t, and in some cases, you’ll come to different conclusions than I do. That’s great! As long as we’re all asking questions, searching for the answers, and relying on God for understanding, differences of opinion don’t matter.
Having said all that, let’s dive in.