Refuting the errors of Jonathan Neville and the Heartland hoax

Monday, November 18, 2019

Jonathan Neville believes the Brethren are dupes

Jonathan Neville is continuing his quest to discredit the Church’s Gospel Topics essay on Book of Mormon geography.

The essay affirms that “the Church does not take a position on the specific geographic locations of Book of Mormon events in the ancient Americas.” Neville and other Heartlanders affirm the New York location of the Book of Mormon as their most important article of faith, so they have to find a way to derogate the essay and dismiss its authority.

The problem for Neville is that “every single line” of the essays “was approved the Quorum of the Twelve and the First Presidency,” as Elder Stephen E. Snow recently stated.

So, how does Neville solve this conundrum? By claiming that the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve were hoodwinked by low-level staffers:
The authors of the anonymous essay [on Book of Mormon geography] squandered an opportunity to educate Church members about the issue, solely because they wanted to accommodate M2C.*

Most, but not all, of the members of the committee who wrote the essay believe M2C, so they think the prophets were wrong about the New York Cumorah. The essay was submitted to the Brethren for approval, but the committee apparently refused to even offer for consideration a version of the essay that contained the teachings of the prophets about Cumorah.

This is standard organizational behavior. When employees want a particular outcome, they guide the boss by giving the boss only what they want him/her to consider. If the boss wants alternatives, the employees provide the worst alternatives they can think of so their preferred outcome appears to the boss as the best choice.
So, Neville would have us hold two beliefs simultaneously:

  1. The location of Cumorah is of such major doctrinal import that it has “been reaffirmed by all members of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve who have ever publicly addressed the issue,” and
  2. The members of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve who lead the Church today are such gullible simpletons that they just sign off on whatever statements the conspirators in the Church History department put in front of them.
The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Rome, Italy
Jonathan Neville believes that he understands the doctrine of the Church better than anyone in this photograph.
Does Neville sustain the current members of the First Presidency and the Twelve as “prophets, seers, and revelators”? Or does he believe that they’re witless seat-warmers who don’t understand one of the most important doctrines of the Restoration? He’s seemingly attempting to hold to both views at the same time, as if such a thing were possible.

The cognitive dissonance required to believe the Heartland hoax is overwhelming.

—Peter Pan

* “M2C” is Jonathan Neville’s acronym for the theory that the Book of Mormon took place in Mesoamerica and that the hill Cumorah in the Book of Mormon is not the same hill in New York where Joseph Smith received the plates of Mormon.

1 comment:

  1. I saw this caption to the photograph, above:

    "Jonathan Neville believes that he understands the doctrine of the Church better than anyone in this photograph."

    I'm sorry, but that is in error. Plainly, Mister Jonathan Neville believes that he understands the doctrine of the Church better than EVERYone in that photograph.

    ReplyDelete

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