"There are three possible explanations for the origin of the Book of Mormon. One is that it is a product of spontaneous generation. Another is that it came into existence in the way Joseph Smith said it did, by special messengers and gifts from God. The third is the hypothesis that Joseph Smith or some other party or parties simply made it all up. No experiments have ever been carried out for testing any of these theories. The first has not even been considered, the second has been dismissed with a contemptuous wave of the hand, and the third has been accepted without question or hesitation.
And yet the third theory is quite as extravagant as the other two, demanding unlimited gullibility and the suspension of all critical judgment in any who would accept it....Where will you find another work remotely approaching the Book of Mormon in scope and daring? It appears suddenly out of nothing--not an accumulation of twenty-five years like the Koran, but a single staggering performance, bursting on a shocked and scandalized world like an explosion, the full-blown history of an ancient people, following them through all the trials, triumphs, and vicissitudes of a thousand years without a break, telling how a civilization originated, rose to momentary greatness, and passed away, giving due attention to every phase of civilized history in a densely compact and rapidly moving story that interweaves dozens of plots with an inexhaustible fertility of invention and an uncanny consistency that is never caught in a slip or contradiction. We respectfully solicit the name of any student or professor in the world who could come within ten thousand miles of such a performance. As a sheer tour-de-force there is nothing like it. The theory that Joseph Smith wrote the Book of Mormon simply will not stand examination." - Hugh Nibley, Since Cumorah
Originally created by Seth Adam Smith at http://www.youtube.com/SethAdamSmith