Joseph Smith is being vindicated in the eyes of those who read, study, and seek to understand the purpose of the Book of Mormon. Scholars and historians are taking notice and are not dismissing the record as a farce. Recently, BYU-TV started running a program titled New Day for the Book of Mormon. I encourage you to consider the program. You may be surprised who is speaking out in defense and favor of the ancient record.
The Book of Mormon is still being printed today in over 115 languages. Well over a 150 million copies have been printed since the first copies were released in March of 1830. It is not going to go away. Missionaries will continue to flood the earth with the book and the invitation to read it.
Study its message without antagonistic motives. Don’t look beyond the mark.
The Book of Mormon’s central message is salvation through Jesus Christ. One overarching theme in the book is Christ as a deliverer, individually and collectively. When a righteous people turn to Him “with full purpose of heart and… serve him with all diligence of mind” (Mosiah 7:33) they are delivered out of bondage (which bondage comes in spiritual and physical ways; both depicted in the Book of Mormon).
One of the principal prophets of the ancient record told us the intent was to show scattered Israel the covenants of the Lord and convince all that Jesus is the Christ, the eternal God. He also exhorted us to “come unto Christ, and lay hold upon every good gift, and touch not the evil gift, nor the unclean thing” (Moroni 10:30). A timely invitation, as many today are quick to lay hold and support evil and unclean behaviors and practices. This principal prophet also extended these words in closing the record:
“Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God” (Read Moroni 10).
The teachings and accounts of people in the Book of Mormon and the Bible invite us to deny ourselves of ungodliness. I can’t think of a better invitation in a world that seeks ignorantly and deliberately, after ungodliness.
The problem is Americans are not reading scripture or showing interest in religious words. We are in many instances indifferent to the word of God or God speaking anew in our day. Even many who attend weekly religious services read little of the Bible. When they do read, it is more surface than depth; it is more selective than comprehensive. We have in the religious community a habit of opening the scriptures to slowly and closely them to quickly. Maybe our lack of interest in reading the scriptures is a direct reflection of our lack of self-control, our lack for the love of virtue.
The teachings, accounts, prophecies, and cherished visitation of the Savior in appearing to a people in America after His resurrection, can help us come unto Jesus Christ and love His commandments over the vain and false philosophies and practices evident in current trends and events. (Read 3 Nephi 11-30)
The Book of Mormon, like the Bible, is full of revelation and will nurture revelation in anyone who sincerely reads and ponders the message in their hearts. Sincere readers will draw closer to the Savior as they read the Book of Mormon.