Mormonism was actually something that required very fine study.
If you say so...
Is the story at face value believable? Sure is.
Clearly you do not live in the the same USA I do, if you live in the USA. I thought that's where you're from, but with a whole world out there... I could be wrong.
Do the 8 EYE witnesses do a lot to substantiate the claim? I do think it so. Note: Not 37 I would have to check my copy but it's 2 Categories of people no more than 12 in total, I believe.
Have you ever heard of someone being paid to endorse something? Just because some actor may say that [brand][something] is better than every other [different brand][something] does that necessarialy make it so? Maybe they were in a room where someone was cooking off Halluccinagens, err "incense" and were primed to see whatever JS wanted them to? Who knows? Point is, people will say anything, if the price is right
, or under the influence of something
However when you study the 3 Separate and different visions of John smith given by Smith himself. It becomes doubtful. Also "witnesses" later came forward and said they never saw such things. If one admits the truth the testimony of the other 7 becomes questionable.
You just stated that 8 EYE witnesses do a lot to substantiate a claim and here you acknowledge, that it could all be made up! Mormanism isn't the only religion where people were making stuff up and trying to get other people to believe thier crap.
Are claims in the Bible outlandish and hard to believe. Yes I agree. That's why it requires in depth study.
Been there, done that. Read the entire, Bible I have. Did you know in Aramaic there is no 'juh' or 'jee' sounds associated to any 'letter?' Each and every name in the bible that starts with 'J' is certainly not as it seems.
What bothers me is people who have done no study. Yet speak as though they have.
Yeshua - 'God is salvation' If 'Jesus' really lived, this would have been his name. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yeshua_%28name%29
But any Greek would know, only a manly man would have an 'S' or 'N' at the end of thier name. Jesus is derived from Iesoûs which is greek for 'Hail Zues' http://www.hiddenbible.com/jesuszeus/jesuszeus.html
If I claim these things are true and offer evidence they are as I have. (we are on the topic of the apostles) If you make the counter claim then I would expect you can support the counter claim
Yet, you claim that you are saved and cannot provide proof, other than you 'feel' it?
For example.. You claim you have a dog. Lets say my claim is you have no dog. If I have a picture of your back yard and see no evidence of a dog being present, you would need to support your claim as I have supported mine.
It's an indoor dog.
Perhaps a picture of you with your dog would support your claim? Going deeper still, If I just didn't want to believe you own a dog I may claim something like that's the neighbors dog.
Of course, no matter how much evidence I can give you. If you don't want to believe it, you're not going to.
Whatever my counter claim shouldn't there be some evidence to support it? That's all I'm asking support your counter claim.
a) If I propose that I have a dog, you don't have to prove I do not have one. The burden of proof is upon me. You can accept that people having dogs is common enough that you do not require proof. However, should you decide that you do need proof, it is upon me to show evidence.
b) If I were to propose that I have a purple pony. Purple ponies are not common, or even rare, so I would expect that you demand proof before you believe my claim. If you were to believe it outright I would think of you as gullible. Would you need to 'prove' that the purple pony does not exist? No, of course not. It a futile endevour. You cannot prove the nonexistence of something. There could be purple ponies on another planet that we have not discovered. So, it would be upon me, to prove it to you, that I have a purple pony.
So therefore, I would be simply supporting my own claim. It is not a "counter claim." I propose a claim, then I support if asked for evidence. No countering anything. If there was a counter, it would be from you, but since it is my claim, I'd have to provide the evidece to convince you. You countering my claim about a purple pony is as futile as countering that I have coins in my pocket, or that I have a dog. You cannot prove to me that I do not have a dog, if I state that I do. I will always find a way that I can have a dog that beats your 'evidence/proof.'
If I cannot provide evidence that I have a dog, then if I'm intellecually honest with myself, I have to determine 'why' I cannot provide proof. Maybe I just have an overactive imagination and just don't want to admit that I have an imaginary friend. Or, I find someone that can take a picture of my dog and I. Maybe I just made it all up, just to make a point?
Edit: forums turned the greek e into a ?.