Produced by Joel Kramer and Scott Johnson
(Living Hope Ministries, 2005)
Reviewed by Eric Johnson
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In 1841, Joseph Smith, Jr., the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS, Mormons) said that “the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth.” In fact, among the four Mormon scriptures—the Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price—none is considered to be more important than the Book of Mormon.
The Book of Mormon, supposedly translated from ancient Egyptian into English by Smith, tells the story of ancient Israelites who sailed to the American continent before the time of Christ. Jesus later visited the two people groups, the Nephites and the Lamanites, soon after His resurrection in Palestine. By the fifth century, the wicked Lamanites, whom Mormon leaders have consistently taught are the forefathers of the Native Americans, had completely annihilated the righteous Nephites.
Just two years after their 2003 production called DNA vs. The Book of Mormon, Joel Kramer and Scott Johnson of Living Hope Christian Fellowship invested approximately $100,000 to travel to Israel, Central America, and New York in order to produce the 66-minute DVD called The Bible vs. The Book of Mormon. “We did this project as a labor of love,” Kramer said. “We want the Mormon people to come into a relationship with the real Jesus of the Bible.”
The producers interviewed 40 different scholars who specialize in topics such as archaeology, theology, and anthropology to discuss issues such as geography, scripture, coins, and warfare. The experts clearly show that the evidence for the Bible far outweighs anything offered by the Book of Mormon. The hardest-hitting interviews are with two “LDS anthropologists,” Thomas Murphy and William Wilson (erroneously listed as Wil West in the earliest release). Both anthropologists are Mormons of record, but they almost seem to dare LDS Church leaders to excommunicate them as they boldly give explanations why they have lost faith in the Book of Mormon.
Saying the LDS scripture is “wrong” and “full of mistakes,” Murphy asserts that “if the Book of Mormon is the most correct book on earth, then we’ve got an awful lot of books full of lies.” Wilson, who calls the Book of Mormon “nineteenth-century religious fiction,” has since begun proceedings to get his name off the LDS Church’s rolls. Murphy, on the other hand, apparently has no plans to leave because, as Scott Johnson said, “he wants the LDS Church to openly address what he’s saying instead of ignoring it. So they will either have to excommunicate him, or they will have to tolerate him as ‘an insider’ who doesn’t wish to be silenced.” This production, which can be accessed for free, is certain to shake the faith of a number of honest Latter-day Saints who open their eyes and realize that their unwavering allegiance to the Book of Mormon is not supported by the evidence.