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Can Oliver Cowdery's testimony be trusted?

Oliver Cowdery can plausibly be considered the co-founder of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Commonly called the church's "second elder" and, at one time, its "assistant president," he wrote most of the Book of Mormon out by hand from dictation as Joseph Smith's principal scribe, recopied the entire manuscript for the printer, and, as one of the Three Witnesses, beheld the angel Moroni, saw the plates and heard the voice of God testify that the translation was correct.

With Joseph Smith, he was ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood by John the Baptist and to the Melchizedek Priesthood by Peter, James and John. He was at Joseph Smith's side in the Kirtland Temple on April 3, 1836, when Moses, Elias, Elijah and the Savior himself appeared there, to accept the newly dedicated building and to confer priesthood keys.

Yet Oliver Cowdery was excommunicated from the church in April 1838, and lived as a non-Mormon for the next decade. In 1848, he was rebaptized, and, two years later, he died.

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