Types of evidence and the Book of Mormon

As noted last week, critics often claim there is either “no evidence” or at least no “direct evidence” to support the Book of Mormon.

In the hard sciences — such as physics — “direct evidence” refers to something that can be demonstrated in a lab under controlled conditions. The results of such observable tests must be reproducible to other scientists. Even under such conditions, however, scientists often rely on “indirect” measurements and multiple independent observations of related phenomenon for things that cannot be seen “directly.” As a page on Cornell University’s physics department's website explains, when it comes to small or immeasurable objects, indirect measurements must be made:

“Modern physics relies heavily on indirectly determining the physical characteristics of objects. ... Indirect determinations are important methods through which accurate measurements can be obtained. ....”

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