Church history (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) is fun. Whether it be modern church history (1800s to present) or Book of Mormon archeology, I find it fascinating.
My recent trip to Vermont was prefaced by Elizabethe’s reading out loud the book Willard’s Cumorah. Here’s an example of a fascinating fact…
About 3 miles from Hill Cumorah, a hill was discovered that had a 10′ wide by 10′ deep trench with skeletal remains that were thrown in to the grave “promiscuously” (their word). Yet, so many people think there is no evidence of a great battle near Cumorah. Yet, the book of Mormon talks of at least 1/4 of a million people killed in that great last Nephite battle.
Much has been done to quash the archeological findings of the area. Some very unintentionally. For example, one man finding a copper breastplate had it turned in to a bowl. Prior to laws being passed regarding the finding of such relics, people did what they pleased with what they found on their property.
I’ve yet had time to research this hill that had the large ditch, but it has me curios. The book had a photo and yes, it looked like bodies were just tossed in to a mass grave with no preparation. Doesn’t that go along with this statement?
And it came to pass that there were ten more who did fall by the sword, with their ten thousand each; yea, even all my people, save it were those twenty and four who were with me, and also a few who had escaped into the south countries, and a few who had deserted over unto the Lamanites, had fallen; and their flesh, and bones, and blood lay upon the face of the earth, being left by the hands of those who slew them to molder upon the land, and to crumble and to return to their mother earth. (Mormon 6:15)
This was written after a battle on Hill Cumorah that left nearly 250,000 Nephites dead. They had gathered for months for this battle, and lead by Mormon and his captains of 20,000, all by 24 men were slain. (This did not count the opposition’s dead.) With that many bodies, what were they left to do? My guess is they raked them in to these big trench graves.
What comes next in the Book of Mormon is one of the saddest sections in the book. I hate to end on a sad note, but we should accept this as a modern-day warning:
17 O ye fair ones, how could ye have departed from the ways of the Lord! O ye fair ones, how could ye have rejected that Jesus, who stood with open arms to receive you!
18 Behold, if ye had not done this, ye would not have fallen. But behold, ye are fallen, and I mourn your loss.
19 O ye fair sons and daughters, ye fathers and mothers, ye husbands and wives, ye fair ones, how is it that ye could have fallen!
20 But behold, ye are gone, and my sorrows cannot bring your return.
21 And the day soon cometh that your mortal must put on immortality, and these bodies which are now moldering in corruption must soon become incorruptible bodies; and then ye must stand before the judgment-seat of Christ, to be judged according to your works; and if it so be that ye are righteous, then are ye blessed with your fathers who have gone before you.
22 O that ye had repented before this great destruction had come upon you. But behold, ye are gone, and the Father, yea, the Eternal Father of heaven, knoweth your state; and he doeth with you according to his justice and mercy.