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DeadSea Scrolls And Mormonism — Part 4

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
The Truth Network Radio
November 21, 2019 2:00 am

DeadSea Scrolls And Mormonism — Part 4

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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Give your own words collection of Mormon quotations compile his research ministries Bill McKeever is a valuable resource when wanting to know what Mormon leaders have said on a given topic and pick up your copy of the neutral lighthouse bookstore or .1 Naumann's commandment examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a respected viewpoint when Mormonism is sponsored by Mormonism research ministry since 1979 Mormonism research ministry has been dedicated to equipping the body of Christ with answers regarding the Christian faith in a manner that expresses gentleness and respect.

And now, your host for today's viewpoint on Mormonism thinks that of the rebels that musical introduction welcome to this additional viewpoint on Mormonism. I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director Mormonism research ministry with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at MRM do the Dead Sea Scrolls support teachings in Mormonism. That's what we've been talking about this week and primarily we are looking at the writings of three Mormon authors Eugene CH who is the author of Mormonism the Dead Sea Scrolls in the not a commodity text. Another book by Dennis K. Brown titled evidences of the church which is published in 2008 and also a book by Charles Abbott immersion in Mormonism, especially for new members and also teams and members who struggle. These three books give the Mormon reader the impression that the Dead Sea Scrolls talk about unique teachings in Mormonism and so we been looking at some of the claims that have been made primarily five claims that Charles Abbott lists in his book that he gets from Dennis K.

Brown's book and we are comparing some of the comments by these authors with scholars such as Dr. Randall Pryce who is a professor at Liberty University and also has directed the Center for Judaic studies from the years 2010 to 2016 were also going to Jodi Magness who was a very well-known archaeologist who wrote a book titled the archaeology of Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls. These scholars do not agree with the conclusions made by these Mormon writers and unfortunately these Mormon writers and the sum of the claims that they make are things that we hear Mormons talk about on the streets. So obviously, these points are circulating but they are not good points and that's why we want to talk about this now and yesterday show we left off talking about the third point of the five and this is the one that had to do with nonbiblical Dead Sea Scrolls tax and according to Dennis K Brown. He says that it teaches that marriage and family go on into eternity. This is what he says. Brown writes, and I have to apologize because were using the Kindle version and one thing I can't stand about Kindle as they do not give you the page numbers that are parallel to the to the hard copy text so I offer my apologies upfront, but Brown wrote the scrolls have many references to eternal families and state that we will be sealed with our spouses and families in the hereafter. They state that our families will be our greatest joy in the eternities. No other church besides ours teaches this today know Eric. He does not cite exactly where he draws that conclusion doesn't know that's quite a statement for him to make it if it doesn't say that then I I can only say shame on Dennis Brown for drawing such a conclusion on that. That's a lot of details he puts in that short little paragraph but the fact is, even though he claims that the scrolls from Qumran talk about marriage and family, going on to eternity in all this family was not really stressed by the Essenes who lived in Qumran.

In fact, family was, not a major issue at all. One of the things that you can do if you want to learn more about this. We have it on our website Cecil doctrine scroll is singular and their hyphens between Dead Sea Scrolls doctrine go and you can see the things that were siding here and yesterday we cited from Jodi Magness and archaeologist from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and she said the archaeological evidence suggests that the community at Qumran consisted of mostly adult men and that most of them would have been celibate. Magness cites the Roman historian Josephus as saying that marriage was only for the propagation of the species, and then she also talks about the village cemetery where she had a chance to do some archaeological digging years ago and she said that that cemetery suggests that women were present at Qumran but it represented a disproportionately small part of the population. The complete absence of infants and children among the excavated burials in the Western sector is striking. Given the high rate of infant and child mortality in antiquity. Despite the small size of the sample. This evidence suggests that the community of Qumran did not include families, so that would seem to be somewhat of a contradiction, then why would they be emphasizing families is Mormons now emphasize families that that's really the case. Why would they do that but yet they don't live that out, whereas Mormons do tend to live that practice out so I would find that to be an inconsistency note in point number four for the five that we are examining the question is does the non-biblical Dead Sea Scrolls text referred to a future profit that would bring the priesthood back that you would think if the Dead Sea Scrolls talks about something like that. That would certainly be a connection between the Qumran community and the modern LDS community will. This is what Dennis K Brown writes in his book, evidences of the church. He says the scrolls mentioned a greater and a lesser priesthood, essentially the same as the Melchizedek priesthood and the Levitical or erotic priesthood those called the sons of Aaron administered the temporal affairs of the community of Qumran. The Eric do the scrolls really mention a Melchizedek priesthood. We find no mention of the Melchizedek priesthood in the Old Testament we find no mention of the Melchizedek priesthood in the New Testament except when a comparison is made between Jesus and the person of Melchizedek. In the book of Hebrews do the Dead Sea Scrolls support this now, not at all, and as a matter of fact the Essenes did believe they had a claim to the Levitical or the Aaronic priesthood. There's no doubt about that. And yet at the same time when you mention the Melchizedek priesthood. We don't see that in any of the Dead Sea Scrolls, but let's just be honest we don't see that in the Bible we don't see that in the book of Mormon either, so none of these tax are going to support this idea that man at the age of 18 can receive this Melchizedek priesthood that supposedly was restored to Joseph Smith by Peter James and John.

Now the problem is that the Essenes did not have control of the Jerusalem temple. They only believed in one temple, and that was the Jerusalem Temple.

There is no evidence whatsoever that they were doing any temple ordinances or any secret handshakes or anything like that that is seeming to be referenced by the Mormon apologists that were siding here.

They did know about the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and they called them and contrasted themselves the Sons of light they call those guys sons of darkness they did believe that they had what was necessary. As far as the authority to be able to run the temple and they look forward to the day where they would be able to take possession of the temple and be able to reinstitute what they believed was true sacrifices and true worship. So basically we do find a parallel. The Essenes thought that they were the only true believers whereas the Mormons today feel that they are the only true believers. What we have here folks is there's no evidence that supports the notion that the Essenes in the community of Qumran were referencing any future profit who would restore the priesthood. Certainly there was no mention to anyone like Joseph Smith coming on the scene years down the road of the fifth and final point that we want to bring up that these gentlemen talk about the nonbiblical Dead Sea Scrolls text reference temple ordinances as necessary for eternal life, and again we have Dennis K Brown in his book, evidences of the church giving this very detailed paragraph describing what he thinks are in the Dead Sea Scrolls. This is what he says the scrolls talked extensively about temples. The temple was the center of life for the community. The scrolls mention the importance of a new name, keywords, special garments and an oath to keep the ceremony sacred, even at the peril of life itself. First of all Eric when I read this paragraph, the first line stands out the scrolls talked extensively about Tim Bowles plural right. Why would the Essenes do that. It doesn't seem to make any sense to me that they would be making a reference to more than one temple.

Since the Jews recognized only one temple, and that was the temple in Jerusalem, and as you mentioned, they didn't really even have authority over that temple. They were not in charge of the temple ritual that went on which of course at this time was merely the sacrificing of animals right they felt that one day they would be in charge, but they weren't at that time when Brown says the temple was the center of life for the community he switching now back to a singular temple, but when he goes on to say the scrolls mention the importance of a new name, keywords, special garments in an oath to keep the ceremony sacred, even at the peril of life itself does Brown give any quotations from the scrolls to support that all that was what was really frustrating when I went through Brown's book as well as abbots because they don't give very much in the way of any kind of primary sources that would be easily accessible. I mean several times. He mentions Hugh Nibley and notes that he took when he took a course at BYU mention cassette tapes that I have no way of getting nothing outside the Mormon realm, so they're not going to the authoritative sources that were trying to cite here in these articles to show what were saying is actually scholarly and accurate.

In an article that was printed in the February 2006 & it was titled the Dead Sea Scrolls and latter-day truth Andrew Skinner who was the Dean of religious education at BYU. He basically talks about in this article.

Cable 11. It yielded the longest scroll. The temple scroll. This scroll was 27 feet long. The longest scroll that was discovered in all 11 caves. It talks about the future temple. This is what Skinner said in this article he said we have no indication that the Qumran community regarded this ideal future temple as anything more than a erotic priesthood structure associated with the rites and rituals of the Mosaic law. In a pure and uncorrupted form Qumran community believe that the Jerusalem Temple was full of corruption will if it's only talking about the rituals of the Mosaic law. In a pure and uncorrupted form. How can you draw the conclusion as Dennis Brown has drawn that somehow there was all this stuff unique to the Mormon Temple endowment ceremony that you would think that Skinner

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