LATIN – apologeticus GREEK – apologetikos Apologetics: “The branch of theology that is concerned with defending or proving the truth of Christian doctrines” (The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition, Houghton Mifflin Company, 2009).
- MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT. FAIR’s Sixth Annual Mormon Apologetics Conference is next Thursday and Friday! Now is the time to register for this exciting event!
- NEW ON THE WEBSITE: DNA and the Book of Mormon. David Stewart responds to the recent DNA-based arguments against the Book of Mormon historicity, arguing that the current scientific evidence doesn’t preclude the Book of Mormon claims.
- FAIR ONLINE BOOKSTORE. Check out the latest FAIR Bookstore specials. For those attending the FAIR Conference, be ready to find the best selection of LDS apologetics available!
- ARTICLE SUBMISSIONS. Interested in writing for FAIR? Learn how you can have your apologetics work published.
- PUBLISHING NOTES. Learn how you can become more involved in FAIR and how you can reuse the material we publish.
- FAIR JOURNAL ARCHIVES.
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
Now is the time to purchase tickets to the FAIR conference on August 5th and 6th in Sandy, Utah. This will be an event you won’t want to miss. Not only will you be able to listen to talks and presentations that are first rate, but you will also be able to meet with the speakers and talk with them one-on-one. We will also have a bookstore with more books than it has ever had before. Sign up now at
This year’s conference features fifteen outstanding speakers and presenters who will deal with a wide range of topics involving LDS history, doctrine, and culture. For example, Margaret Young, co-author with Darius Gray of the “Standing On the Promises” trilogy, will be giving a presentation entitled “Empathetic Imagination: Reading Between the Lines in ‘Standing On the Promises.'” Using events in the lives of some early pioneers, she will address the difficulty Latter-day Saints face in dealing with the race issue without empathy.
Other topics in this year’s conference include the Book of Abraham, the apostasy, the King Follett Discourse, the historicity of the Book of Mormon, the Book of Mormon witnesses, homosexuality, black Latter-day Saint issues, women in the Church, testimony and Church history, anti-Mormon (mis)uses of history, defending the faith, and more!
You can read about each of the 2004 FAIR Conference presenters at
For those of you who are attending the conference, don’t forget to bring your old books and apologetic stuff to the FAIR auction. FAIR is a non profit organization and we rely on your donations. Donating your old books will help fund FAIR.
On a different note, once again you will probably start to see articles in your newspapers on DNA and the book of Mormon. A new book has been released claiming that DNA proves the Book of Mormon false, and the press is scooping it up again. For a number of articles that respond to this claim go to
DNA and the Book of Mormon (FAIR Wiki Link)
Those interested in this topic should also be sure to read David Stewart’s paper that is discussed in this issue of the FAIR Journal.
DNA and the Book of Mormon
by David Stewart
Over the last year, critics of the Book of Mormon have been extremely vocal in their attacks on this book of LDS scripture. The latest round of ammunition was provided by Thomas Murphy, who pronounced that recent DNA studies of Native Americans preclude any genetic tie to Jewish populations in the eastern Mediterranean. LDS scholars have responded to these attacks in a variety of ways, arguing (1) the bases of the DNA studies don’t provide the evidence needed to test Murphy’s hypothesis, (2) the DNA studies used by Murphy don’t support his conclusion, and (3) even if Israelite DNA (whatever that may be) has not yet been discovered in Native Americans genetic surveys, a “limited geography model” for the Book of Mormon could account for its absence.
David Stewart has written a lengthy response to the Murphy challenge, arguing that the DNA evidence available is too weak to argue against even a hemispheric model of the Book of Mormon. Stewart points out that LDS Church leaders have often referred to descendants of Native Americans and Polynesian populations as “Lamanites” and descendants of Lehi, and that the recent DNA arguments against the Book of Mormon give no reason to abandon that position or to modify what is meant by those terms.
Stewart shows that there is no current accepted genetic fingerprint for Jewish populations prior to the Babylonian captivity. In his paper, Stewart looks at a number of the DNA markers and studies used by Murphy and others to reach their conclusions. Stewart points out that non-Israelite wives were not uncommon (such as Ruth and the wives of Solomon), and that their female descendants would test negative for whatever mitochondrial DNA signatures were accepted for Israelites. He points to problems that exist even with limited subgroups of Israelites, such as the Cohen priestly line and the Levite populations, and how even in these relatively well-defined subgroups there is such a wide variance in DNA markers as to make any conclusion about generic “Jewish DNA” impossible.
Stewart concludes that “a careful examination of the existing DNA data demonstrates that this data is in no way inconsistent with the teaching of LDS prophets that immigrants from ancient Israel represent the ‘principal ancestors’ of modern Native Americans.”
Read the article:
DNA and the Book of Mormon by David Stewart, M.D.
FAIR ONLINE BOOKSTORE
The FAIR LDS Bookstore is in the process of packing up for our annual conference and we’ve found some great buys for you! One such book is “Be Still, My Son.” This is the true story of a boy born into a typical Latter-day Saint family but whose father leaves the church seeking out a polygamous lifestyle in Short Creek, Arizona. Through a series of life-altering events, he learns to “wait on the Lord and trust him.” This is a powerful story of one man’s journey to elusive happiness.
For this and other specials, visit our bookstore at:
We welcome article submissions for the FAIR Web site. If you would like to submit an article, please review the editing guidelines at:
Submit your article to the FAIR Journal Editor. An appropriate article would be one that affirms the truthfulness of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
While LDS apologetics (in the broadest sense) deals with refuting critics of the Church, articles don’t necessarily have to deal with anti-Mormonism, but may deal with some new evidence of the Book of Mormon, some interesting scripture interpretation, a viewpoint or quote from the early Christian Fathers or other historical figure, an interesting lesson idea, an inspiring missionary story, Church history, or your view on a current event related to the Church or a piece from a historical journal.
We may also accept articles from people who are not members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that may not necessarily meet the guidelines of supporting the church if it is a topic of general interest to people involved in apologetics.
A submission may range in length from several pages to a single paragraph.
FAIR is not owned, controlled by or affiliated with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. All research and opinions provided in the FAIR Journal and on the FAIR Web site (http://www.fairlds.org) are the sole responsibility of FAIR, and should not be interpreted as official statements of LDS doctrine, belief or practice.
If someone has forwarded this e-journal to you and you would like to join you should go to www.fairlds.org and click on the FAIR Publications link.
If you are very interested in apologetics and would like to actively participate in FAIR you should consider joining our apologetics e-mail list. Visit www.fairlds.org and click on the Join FAIR link to join this list.
If you manage your own e-mail list, and wish to include some of these thoughts or articles on your list, contact us through our Web site, at this page: www.fairlds.org/contact.psp. We have a fairly liberal policy of using our material so long as you contact us first to gain permission and clearly identify that your source was FAIR and by adding a link to the FAIR Web site (www.fairlds.org).
If you would like to sign up to receive the FAIR Journal automatically, click here.
To return to the index of past FAIR Journal issues, click here.