LDS Apologetics and the Battle for Mormon History

Article ID: JAM502 | By: Bill McKeever and Eric Johnson

This article first appeared in the Christian Research Journal, volume 28, number 1 (2005). For further information or to subscribe to the Christian Research Journal go to: http://www.equip.org

SYNOPSIS

Apologetics, historically, has not been a high priority for the leaders of the Mormon Church, but it has become more so in recent years. Thanks especially to the Internet, several Latter-day Saint (LDS, Mormon) apologetics groups have made it their business to actively defend the historicity of the Book of Mormon and the Book of Abraham as well as uphold the integrity of early Mormon leaders. The most prominent of these organizations is the Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies (FARMS), which became an entity of the Mormon Church during the past decade. Among the many authors whose works have been criticized by FARMS researchers are fellow Mormons Grant Palmer and D.Michael Quinn, both of whom hold views on LDS scripture and history that are contrary to the position of the LDS establishment. The issue, then, centers on whether or not the history as propagated by LDS Church leaders is accurate. If it is not, then the average Mormon who wishes to keep his or her faith must spiritualize significant parts of Mormon history, from the notion that LDS founder Joseph Smith, Jr., had the ability to translate ancient texts to the very idea that there were ever Nephites and Lamanites on the American continent. Since such a process would undermine the very core of what has been taught since the inception of the LDS Church, its leaders and apologists have been actively engaging in what has become a battle for Mormon history.

In his 1949 novel titled 1984, eminent British author George Orwell described a fictitious government that tyrannically controlled the very way its citizens thought by subtly changing the facts of history. Whoever “controls the past controls the future,” Orwell cleverly wrote.1

The truth of Orwell’s quote goes beyond the pages of his fictional novel. One can point to the former Soviet Union as a classic example of such control. Some citizens of the Soviet Union must have realized the absurdity of the information the communist government’s media outlets provided throughout most of the latter half of the twentieth century, but the majority seemed to have been convinced by their lies and half-truths. Long bread lines and nuclear mishaps became the fault of the “imperialists.” It wasn’t until after the end of the Cold War and the destruction of the European communist stranglehold that many who lived behind the Iron Curtain realized that their whole perception of the world was comprised of fables and deceptions.

There is no direct parallel between the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS or Mormon Church) and communism, but the idea that those who control the information that LDS Church members receive thereby shape their thinking certainly needs to be considered. There is no doubt that, over the years, in speeches and church literature, Mormon leaders have been less than forthright about the facts from their church’s past; beginning with their founder, Joseph Smith, Jr., they typically have presented a sanitized version of LDS history.

Latter-day Saints who wonder about the historicity of the Book of Mormon or the controversy about Smith’s various accounts of his “First Vision” will only get a one-sided, public relations–treated viewpoint if they turn only to official LDS Church sources.2 Such inquirers will have to turn to outside resources to gain a more complete understanding. Many Mormons, however, are not willing to look any further than what they are taught by their local bishops and Sunday school teachers. One former Mormon told us, “The Church keeps us so busy with raising families and many church duties that we never have time to do much research of our own.”3

Many LDS Church leaders, traditionally, have personally shied away from apologetics, especially when it comes to answering the church’s critics. Doing so, they feel, would not be biblical. Mormon apostle Boyd Packer, in fact, once misused Nehemiah6:3 to support the idea that Mormons ought to answer their critics with silence.4 This has not, however, hindered Mormon lay members from stepping into the apologetic waters.5

In recent years Mormon leadership has been more open to answering critics of their faith, even to the point of sanctioning the Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies (FARMS) in 1997. At that time, church president Gordon Hinckley said, “FARMS represents the efforts of sincere and dedicated scholars.”6 The FARMS Web site adds, “Work done in the name of FARMS rests on the conviction that the Book of Mormon, the Bible, and other ancient scripture such as the Book of Abraham and the Book of Moses are all the word of God, written by prophets of God, and that they are authentic, historical texts.”7 The promotion of the LDS faith is a high priority for FARMS, though John Welch conceded in an Associated Press article, “We don’t speak officially for the church in any way.”8

FARMS represents what University of Utah writing instructor John-Charles Duffy calls “orthodox scholarship” because it presents “Joseph Smith as a bona fide prophet and translator.”9 Opposite to this, Duffy says, are the “revisionists” who “tend to attribute Mormonism’s founding texts and teachings to Smith’s own psychology in combination with environmental influences.”10 These revisionists, he adds, portray the orthodox apologists as “unscrupulous, deceitful individuals, desperate to defend a position they know, deep down, is untenable.”11

In recent years, LDS leaders have utilized material by FARMS to respond to controversial material. The official LDS Web site has even been used to host three rebuttals written in response to a recent book by secular author Jon Krakauer; the rebuttals disagree with Krakauer’s notion that numerous polygamous groups scattered around the West are really extensions of nineteenth-century Mormonism.12

Mormon apologists and writers used to their advantage an article written in 1997 by two evangelical seminary students, Carl Mosser and Paul Owen.13 The paper chided Christian scholars and countercult ministries for ignoring the latest scholarly defenses of the LDS faith. Many Mormons took their conclusions to mean that LDS scholars and apologists were somehow vindicated in their conclusions. Mosser and Owen, however, have remained critical of Mormonism as a whole. In 2002, they, along with philosopher Francis Beckwith, coedited a book titled The New Mormon Challenge: Responding to the Latest Defenses of a Fast-Growing Movement (Zondervan). It contained challenging essays from prominent Christian thinkers, such as William Lane Craig, J.P.Moreland, and Craig Blomberg, that criticize Mormon philosophy and doctrine.

FARMS is largely dedicated to defending the image of the Mormon Church by protecting Smith from any bad publicity, while upholding the historicity of supposed ancient writings such as the Book of Mormon and the Pearl of Great Price. FARMS writers are known for doing whatever it takes—including tackling issues involving science, such as archaeology and DNA testing—to support their belief that the Mormon Church was created by God in 1830 as a restoration of true Christianity.

ONE INSIDER’S VIEW OF MORMON ORIGINS

Mormon apologists are quick to criticize those whom they feel are challenging the prevailing views of the LDS Church. Consider, for example, fourth generation Mormon Grant Palmer’s 2002 book titled An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins.14 According to the back cover, Palmer served three times as a director of the LDS Institute of Religion in California and Utah as well as having instructed at the Church College of New Zealand and LDS seminaries at two Utah locations.


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Palmer points out that most Mormons today have no comprehension of the controversial nineteenth-century history from which Mormonism sprang. Referring to his fellow Mormons, he writes in the preface,

We like to hear confirmations that everything is as we assumed it was: our pioneer ancestors were heroic and inspired and the Bible and Book of Mormon are in perfect harmony, for instance. We never learn in church that the Book of Abraham papyri were discovered and translated by Egyptologists or that researchers have studied American Indian genes and what the implications are for the Book of Mormon. Questions about such topics are discouraged because they create tension; they are considered inappropriate or even heretical. This approach has isolated many of us from the rest of the world or from reality itself in those instances when we insist on things that are simply untrue.15

Saying much research on Mormonism’s origins and writings has been done during the past three decades, Palmer bemoans the fact that too much evidence “escapes the view of the rank-and-file in the church.”16 In addition, he declares, “much of what even the critics have written is backed by solid investigation and sound reasoning and should not be dismissed. Your friends don’t always tell you what you need to hear. Furthermore, it is untrue that non-Mormons who write about the church are de facto anti-Mormon.”17 When the evidence of Mormonism’s origins is considered, he says, it produces a “picture much different from what we hear in the modified versions that are taught in Sunday school.”18

Palmer realizes that some fellow Latter-day Saints may think he is no better than an “anti-Mormon”—this pejorative title is meant to disparage anyone who challenges the LDS faith-promoting history as encouraged by church leadership19—yet he steadfastly declares that he is “salvaging the earliest, authentic versions of these stories from the ravages of well-meaning censors who have abridged and polished them for institutional purposes.”20

Throughout the book, Palmer peels back layer after layer of misconceptions of LDS origins that he says are held by too many Mormons. Among other things, Palmer questions Joseph Smith’s translation of the Book of Mormon; points out that none of Smith’s changes to the text have been supported by the numerous Old and New Testament manuscript finds since 1833; declares that Smith had an “evolving concept of God”; denies the historicity of Smith’s translations; insists that Smith did not view the original text as unchangeable; and holds that the fundamental writings on which the LDS Church is based are nothing more than myths and fictional tales.21

Palmer says that he “cherishes” many of Smith’s teachings, including “the plan of salvation and his view that the marriage covenant extends beyond death,” but, he says, “when it comes to the founding events, I wonder if they are trustworthy as history.”22 He concludes, “As Latter-day Saints, our religious faith should be based and evaluated by how our spiritual and moral lives are centered in Jesus Christ, rather than in Joseph Smith’s largely rewritten, materialistic, idealized, and controversial accounts of the church’s founding.”23

INSIDER OR TURNCOAT?

Palmer’s denial of LDS history as proposed by current Mormon leaders was sure to draw fire from FARMS. And it did. A total of five separate reviews of Palmer’s book were included in a 2003 edition of FARMS Review of Books.24 His insistence that reform in the LDS Church is long overdue has caused him to be branded a turncoat; indeed, his very devotion to the LDS Church has been called into question, and on December12,2004, the church disfellowshiped him.

One magnet of criticism is the title of Palmer’s book because it classifies him as a Mormon “insider.” In his review, FARMS writer Davis Bitton bemoans the fact that the present book “is not just a view of Mormon origins but ‘an insider’s view’ of those origins. We are supposed to be really impressed. An ‘insider’ must certainly know the facts. An ‘insider’ surely wouldn’t be so ill-bred as to write against his own religion.”25 Bitton later adds, “We see how inaccurate, how deliberately misleading, this word insider is in describing Palmer’s point of view.”26 Another reviewer, Mark Ashurst-McGee, echoes Bitton’s complaint when he writes, “Essentially, it is a piece of disingenuous advertising. It intends to present Palmer as a seasoned gospel teacher who will shepherd those who wish to learn more about the origins of their faith.”27

Bitton and Ashurst-McGee are not the only reviewers who question Palmer’s motives; for instance, longtime FARMS writer Louis Midgley claims that Palmer “appears also to have been…an ardent consumer of revisionist, essentially anti-Mormon accounts of Latter-day Saint origins.”28 Midgley also hints that Palmer had “anti-Mormon handlers” going back as far as the mid-1980s when Palmer began writing the material for his book.29 Under a section titled “Packaging Palmer,” Midgley writes, “He should therefore identify himself as an outsider who has been for at least twenty years profoundly beset by doubts and misgivings about the faith of the Saints.”30

In an Internet article, Ron Priddis, managing director at Signature Books, which published Palmer’s book, responds to the five FARMS reviews and complains about the “scholarship” of the FARMS writers. He says that their methods “no doubt score points with FARMS devotees, but other readers find the approach off-putting.”31 Priddis also points out their “tendency to be provocative for no apparent reason other than to impress readers with their erudition.”32

Priddis is very direct in his criticism of those who review books for FARMS, writing in his conclusion that FARMS leaders need “a critical examination of their publications. Scholars find FARMS to be too absurd to take seriously. Church members fear that if they question FARMS, it appears that they are questioning the church. So FARMS gets a free ticket and the quality of their work suffers as a result.”33 The writers do not, he says, “begin to convince anyone to adopt their fuzzy views of science and history.”34

Others besides Priddis have admonished the tactics espoused by FARMS and a variety of other LDS apologists.35 John-Charles Duffy writes, “Apologetic discourse found in the pages of the FARMS Review or at SHIELDS and other websites, can be unabashedly aggressive: scornful, peremptory, propelled by hostile emotion.”36 Journalists Richard and Joan Ostling say that FARMS is “particularly shrill in its rhetoric, an odd pose for an organization that seeks to win intellectual respectability for the church.”37

Another critic of FARMS is D.Michael Quinn, a former BYU professor and historian who was excommunicated from the LDS Church in 1994, partly because the conclusions he deduced from research similar to that done by Palmer were not in line with the teachings of Mormonism. Quinn differentiates between apologist and polemicist by saying “polemics is an extreme version of apologetics. Defending a point of view becomes less important than attacking one’s opponents….Moving beyond apologist persuasion, LDS polemicists furiously (and often fraudulently) attack any non-traditional view of Mormonism. They don’t mince words—they mince the truth.”38

Quinn believes that there is “evidence of deception in the writings of several polemical reviewers for FARMS….The polemics of FARMS reviewers against the writings they dislike actually undermines the credibility of FARMS authors in defending the writings they love.”39 In addition, he says that many of the FARMS writers don’t properly weigh the evidence: “Arguments for the Mormon faith are undermined by unequal application of the standards of evidence. Aside from instances of dishonesty or distortion, this is the next greatest weakness in the writings of the FARMS polemicists….Neither God nor faith is well-served by polemical tricks.”40

Quinn points out that many FARMS writers too often insist that scholars who disagree with the LDS viewpoint should be required to respond to other FARMS articles that address the issue at hand. There are, however, two problems with the premise of this requirement: First, just because something has been addressed does not necessarily mean that it has been addressed well. Second, FARMS material is very specialized and can be difficult to obtain; it is not as well circulated as FARMS writers would want readers to think. Speaking about a review done by two Christian apologists, Quinn writes, “FARMS polemical reviewers condemn current anti-Mormon writers two thousand miles away (in Tennessee) for not consulting ‘available’ in-house FARMS papers with almost no distribution beyond Utah.”41

A common trait of many Mormon apologists, including those from FARMS, is a propensity to attack the credentials of individuals like Palmer who may disagree with the standard history and doctrines set out by the LDS Church. A number of Mormon writers, in fact, will attack a critic rather than dealing with his argument. Consider Bitton’s sarcastic comments in his review of Palmer’s book:

For some reason, I am not inspired by this knight in shining armor. He may appear mild mannered, but he is not doing the Lord’s work. He has lived a life of deceit for many years. His lance is broken. Palmer lacks the scholarly credibility that derives from publishing in refereed journals. Unlike some other CES [Church Educational System] teachers and historians, Palmer has produced little or no original research. He has not, to my knowledge, presented his own findings on any specific topic at conventions of historians, and I do not find his name in lists of scholarly publications.42

Bitton uses other inflammatory and unnecessary words and phrases to refer to Palmer, including “with sophomoric innocence” and “flatfooted and clueless.”43 At one point Bitton gets so discouraged that he exclaims, “What planet has this man been living on?”44 Referring to an upcoming book on Jesus that Palmer promises for 2005, Bitton sarcastically intones, “I can hardly wait.”45

Bitton questions Palmer’s scholarship and integrity, but it should be pointed out that Palmer dutifully provided numerous scholarly footnotes throughout his book. In addition, for Bitton to question Palmer’s credibility based on his lack of being published in refereed journals is a bit hypocritical since the vast majority of the work at FARMS has not undergone peer review. Most FARMS writers are published by their own in-house organization and, for the most part, sold only in Mormon bookstores to be read mainly by faithful Latter-day Saints.46

The issue of attacking the man instead of his argument is not lost on Quinn, who points out how Daniel Peterson, the founding editor of the FARMS Review of Books, lays the blame on the church’s critics. Peterson once wrote, “If we have occasionally been guilty of levity at the expense of some of our critics, this has been because they tempted us with irresistible targets. It isn’t our fault….A few of us, indeed, may have been born that way, with the nastiness gene—which is triggered by arrant humbuggery.”47

Duffy notes, “LDS apologists often appear to be driven by strong emotion. Peterson’s writing, in particular, shows signs on occasion of having been produced in a surge of scorn or anger.”48 Some LDS apologetic organizations are trying to be taken seriously, he says, but he wishes “that the LDS community generally and FARMS specifically would be more emphatic in disapproving the verbally aggressive apologetics.”49

Duffy concludes that it is doubtful that orthodox Mormon scholars are making inroads in the scholarly community. He writes, “Orthodox intellectuals are naïve if they imagine they can persuade non-LDS scholars to seriously consider the possibility that the Book of Mormon is an ancient document….Outside of a relatively small number of academics who may convert to Mormonism following exposure to orthodox scholarship, I believe the most that orthodox scholars can hope for in the long run is tolerance, not persuasion….Orthodox scholarship will not result in mainstream academics taking LDS faith claims seriously.”50

JUST WHO IS IN CHARGE?

In the LDS Church, it is traditionally the Mormon prophet and the other members of the First Presidency along with the Council of the Twelve who determine what is orthodox Mormon doctrine. In recent years, however, the very apologists who have been sanctioned to defend Mormonism have, while defending certain Mormon doctrines, undermined beliefs that have long been held in the Mormon Church. This has created internal confusion over who is actually determining what is orthodox Mormon doctrine. The situation was captured in an editorial cartoon in the May 2004 edition of Sunstone that pictures a group of LDS general authorities boarding a bus labeled “Mormon Theology.” At the wheel is a driver labeled “FARMS.” One of the general authorities faces the others and says, “I thought you were driving.”

Plant geneticist SimonG.Southerton, a former Mormon bishop who serves as a senior scientist with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization in Australia, correctly notes that the views expressed by Mormon apologists do not carry the weight of the prophetic declarations of the “Brethren,” which is another word for the Mormon leadership known as general authorities.51 Mormon apologists admittedly speak with no authoritative capacity within the Mormon community; nevertheless, they often contradict the authoritative positions of the very men they should be defending. Even biblical interpretations by LDS authorities are subject to criticism when they do not square with the apologist’s point of view.

One example of this is how Daniel Peterson of FARMS and Ben McGuire of the Foundation for Apologetic Information and Research (FAIR) contradict LDS apostle JamesE.Talmage’s explanation, in his book Jesus the Christ, that John10:34 refers merely to human judges.52 Many Mormons may not realize that this disagreement must extend to the Mormon First Presidency itself, since Jesus the Christ was one of two books written by Talmage “to have been commissioned by the First Presidency, reviewed by committees consisting of general authorities and published under the president of the church’s official imprimatur.”53 Peterson and McGuire’s criticisms have not received such LDS notoriety. The fact that these apologists are not reprimanded for contradicting LDS authority lends credence to Priddis’s claim that apologists who are faithful to the church on certain issues are given a “free ticket” despite their criticisms on other issues.

The severity of this problem has been brought to the forefront in recent years as scientists confirmed that there is no genetic link between American Indians and Jews. According to the story told in the Book of Mormon, a Jewish man named Lehi came to America with his family around 600BC. His offspring quickly divided into primarily two people groups known for their loyalty to two of Lehi’s sons, Laman and Nephi. The narrative tells how the Lamanites and the Nephites constantly battled each other until the white-skinned Nephites were completely dominated and destroyed by their dark-skinned counterparts. Mormon leaders have historically insisted that the Lamanites were the principal ancestors of the Native Americans. According to those who hold the doctrinal purse strings, the people mentioned in the Book of Mormon numbered in the millions; however, scientific data has compelled Mormon scholars to reject such a notion.

Southerton looked to Mormon apologetics works for answers when he was confronted with this dilemma as a church member. “I was amazed at the lengths that FARMS went to in order to prop up faith in the Book of Mormon,” he said.54 “I felt that the only way I could be satisfied with FARMS explanations was to stop thinking. On the other hand I was also surprised at how readily the declarations of the prophets, including Joseph Smith, could be overlooked in order to salvage the wreck.”55

In his book, Southerton notes,

Most LDS apologists now accept that the Americas were widely and heavily populated at the time the Lehites arrived on the continent. FARMS writers propose that while Lehi and his small group quickly dominated the native populations soon after they arrived in the New World, their own populations may never have been numerically significant. The shift from a macro-history of all ancient peoples of the continents of North and South America to a micro-history of a few people who lived somewhere in Mesoamerica corresponds with the exponential growth in secular research revealing an overwhelming connection to Asia. For all the criticism leveled at mainstream dogma, the thinking of Mormon scholars is now more aligned with their Gentile colleagues than the teachings of latter-day prophets.56

Southerton sees modern interpretations regarding Book of Mormon geography as equally unimpressive since they ignore the dominant literal interpretation of the text as well as the many unambiguous statements of all church presidents since the time of Joseph Smith. He dismisses the popular “limited geography” theory espoused by John Sorenson, a retired BYU professor and longtime supporter of FARMS.57 Southerton’s conclusion about FARMS is quite direct: “They should come out and say, ‘There’s no evidence to support your Israelite ancestry.’ I don’t have any problem with anyone believing what’s in the Book of Mormon. Just don’t make it look like science is backing it all up.”58

TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES

History is supposed to deal with facts, yet much of the history the LDS Church presents is filled with notions that are not accurate. So-called revisionists such as D.Michael Quinn, Grant Palmer, and Simon Southerton seem to be placing their cards on the table and calling LDS leadership to quit doctoring up their “official” history. The church leaders’ reaction to this challenge, especially in light of the tactics taken by its orthodox scholars, will be instrumental in showing just how seriously Mormonism should be taken in this information-laden twenty-first century.

noteS

1. George Orwell, 1984 (New York: Signet, 1990), part 1, chap. 3.

2. See David Persuitte, Joseph Smith and the Origins of the Book of Mormon, 2nd ed. (Jefferson, NC: McFarland and Company, 2000), chap.2.

3. Sandy Herter, conversation with Bill McKeever, 1998.

4. Boyd Packer, “Come All Ye Songs of God,” Ensign, August 1983, 69.

5. These include such groups as the Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies (FARMS), the Foundation for Apologetic Information and Research (FAIR), and the Scholarly and Historical Information Exchange for Latter-day Saints (SHIELDS), all of which maintain Web sites.

6. “About Farms,” under “By Study and Also by Faith,” The Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies, http://www.farms.byu.edu/aboutfarms.php.

7. Ibid.

8. John Welch, “LDS Scholars Revising Doctrine in Light of DNA Evidence,” Salt Lake Tribune, July 24, 2004. Welch founded FARMS in 1979 and continues to serve the organization as a board member.

9. John-Charles Duffy, “Defending the Kingdom, Rethinking the Faith: How Apologetics is Reshaping Mormon Orthodoxy,” Sunstone, May 2004, 34.

10. Ibid.

11. Ibid.

12. Jon Krakauer, Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith (New York: Doubleday, 2003).

13. Carl Mosser and Paul Owen, “Mormon Scholarship, Apologetics, and Evangelical Neglect: Losing the Battle and Not Knowing It?” Trinity Journal 19, 2 (Fall 1998): 179–205.

14. This book was rated in the Top 10 on amazon.com throughout 2004 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

15. Grant Palmer, An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 2002), vii.

16. Ibid., viii.

17. Ibid.

18. Ibid., ix.

19. Journalists Richard Ostling and Joan Ostling write, “All too often Saints use the label ‘anti-Mormon’ as a tactic to forestall serious discussion.” Mormon America (San Francisco: Harper, 1999), 376.

20. Palmer, x.

21. Ibid., 2, 11, 21, 36, 84, 206.

22. Ibid., 261.

23. Ibid., 263.

24. FARMS Review of Books 15, 2 (2003). Having this many reviews of one book is common for FARMS.

25. Davis Bitton, “The Charge of a Man with a Broken Lance (But Look What He Doesn’t Tell Us),” FARMS Review of Books 15, 2 (2003): 257.

26. Ibid.

27. Mark Ashurst-McGee, “A One-Sided View of Mormon Origins,” FARMS Review of Books 15, 2 (2003): 310.

28. Louis Midgley, “Prying into Palmer,” FARMS Review of Books 15, 2 (2003): 367.

29. Midgley postulates that researchers Brent Metcalfe and George D. Smith (“wealthy owner of Signature Books”) are two likely suspects to have been Palmer’s “handlers.”

30. Midgley, 409.

31. Ron Priddis, “A Reply to FARMS and the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute,” SignatureBooks.com, http://www.signaturebooks.com/excerpts/insider’s4.htm.

32. Ibid.

33. Ibid.

34. Ibid.

35. See James White, “Of Cities and Swords: The Impossible Task of Mormon Apologetics,” Christian Research Journal 19, 1 (1996): 28–30, 32–35.

36. Duffy, 24. Duffy reports that “leaders of FAIR have said that [they] eschew ‘personal attacks,’ ‘bashing,’ or efforts to ‘destroy detractors’” (46, n. 67). A cursory glance at the FAIR Web site will show this statement to be highly disingenuous.

37. Ostling and Ostling, 376.

38. D. Michael Quinn, Early Mormonism and the Magic World View (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 1998) x, xi. Quinn revised his first edition from the 1980s with numerous responses to critics such as FARMS.

39. Ibid., 352.

40. Ibid., 572.

41. Ibid., 192. FARMS does offer some documents for free on the Internet, but many require a subscription.

42. Bitton, 259.

43. Ibid., 264.

44. Ibid., 270.

45. Ibid., 271.

46. Bitton lists numerous resources in his endnotes, but only two (both from the University of Illinois Press) were published by non-Mormons.

47. Daniel Peterson (FARMS Review of Books 8, 1), quoted in Quinn, 329, n. 11.

48. Duffy, 26.

49. Ibid., 29.

50. Ibid., 37.

51. Simon G. Southerton, Losing a Lost Tribe: Native Americans, DNA, and the Mormon Church (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 2004), 163–64.

52. James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ: A Study of the Messiah and his Mission (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1982), 501.

53. Dennis Lythgoe, “New ‘Jesus the Christ’ a Winner Despite a Flaw,” Deseret News, January 25, 2003.

54. Simon Southerton, “DNA Genealogies of American Indians and the Book of Mormon,” Exmormon.org, http://www.exmormon.org/whylft125.htm.

55. Ibid.

56. Southerton, Losing a Lost Tribe.

57. Ibid., 157.

58. Simon Southerton, quoted in Patty Henetz, “DNA Research and Mormon Scholars Changing Basic Beliefs,” USA TODAY, July 26, 2004, http://www.usatoday.com/ tech/news/2004-07-26-dna-lds_x.htm.