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I came across some words of King Benjamin to his sons last night that I thought were interesting.

I would that ye should remember that these sayings are true, and also that these records are true. And behold, also the plates of Nephi, which contain the records and the sayings of our fathers from the time they left Jerusalem until now, and they are true; and we can know of their surety because we have them before our eyes. (Mosiah 1:6)

I find it interesting that King Benjamin is saying that the records are true. That is something many members of the Church say all the time about the Book of Mormon. What really makes it interesting is that King Benjamin says they are true because they can see them.

Is that what we use to determine whether something is true or not? If so, I can say my tie is true because I see it. I can say my dresser or my computer or my vehicle are true because I can see them.

Is this how Mormons use the word from the pulpit on Fast Sundays? When they say the Book of Mormon is true, are they saying it exists? Is that how the hearers interpret it?

Even more interesting is Alma the Younger’s teaching to the Zoramites:

[If] ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true. (Alma 32:21)

Alma thinks something can be true without being seen.

8 thoughts on “True

  1. I can say my tie is true because I see it.

    So that’s why missionaries can’t wear bow ties! They can’t see them (at least not their own), so they can’t be sure they are “true.”

  2. Perhaps part of what Benjamin was saying is that they didn’t really need faith to know that the records were true – they could see them. We need faith to believe that there really were plates and that Joseph translated tham.

  3. But people don’t say, “I know the golden plates are true”. They say, “I know the Book of Mormon is true”. And they see the Book of Mormon.

  4. Strangely enough, members also say, “I know the church is true”.

    Now unless they’re actually talking about the physical building, this statement makes no sense in the light of the King Benjamin remarks.

    Then again there’s a huge distinction between the true=correct, true=pure, and true=called from a higher source, definitions of the word ‘true’.

    That’s probably another problematic issue related to this topic.

  5. I think when they say the Church is true they’re talking about the Church as we know it today in shapes and forms… meaning led by a Prophet and such.

    From a terrestrial point of view this organization brings us rewards like no other religion could… and for that reason we gain faith in things we do not see… it’s a vicious cycle tho… and i contradict myself because you do first belief in the book of mormon, get the rewards, believe in the church and then it goes backwards…

    a very problematic issue indeed.

  6. Benjamin obviously wasn’t saying that seeing was the ONLY way to know something was true. But witnessing a thing with our eyes is one of the ways we can verify it.

  7. I can’t think of a form of verification that is invulnerable to falsification. For example, people can be deceived by optical illusions. Their memories of what they have seen can be faulty. Similarly, people are often fooled into believing that the strong emotions they may feel during a tent meeting are manifestations of the Holy Ghost.

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