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DNA vs. The Book of Mormon — A Review

DNA vs. The Book of Mormon — A Review

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DNA vs. The Book of Mormon

DNA vs. The Book of Mormon (DVD)
Produced by Living Hope Ministries (www.sourceflix.com), 2003, 49 minutes (English), 54 minutes (Spanish) 

The title and introduction pages of the Book of Mormon state, respectively, “the Lamanites ... are a remnant of the house of Israel” and “the Lamanites ... are the principal ancestors of the American Indians.”  This explains why the LDS Church leaders have always taught that the Israelites are the principal ancestors of Native American Indians. But, are they?

This documentary accurately presents the consensus of the scientific community that northern Asia — not Israel — is the place of origin of the Native American Indians.

The DNA vs. The Book of Mormon documentary examines and compares genetic evidence identifying the DNA fingerprints of the Jewish populations and American Indian populations, and presents the testimony of several DNA experts in seeking to answer the question, “Are Israelites the principal ancestors of Native American Indians?”

Testing of the Y-chromosome DNA and mitochondrial DNA are especially useful in genealogy. This is because the Y-chromosome DNA is passed on only by the father, the mitochondria DNA is passed on only by the mother, and neither of these two types of DNA engages in recombination. Thousands of Native American Indians along the western coast of the Americas (from Alaska to South America) have undergone this type of DNA testing. The DNA evidence is conclusive: 99.4% of Native American Indian DNA originated in northern Asia, the remaining 0.6% originated in either Europe or Africa and is found only in samples traced to the post-1492 colonial era (after Columbus arrived in the New World).

So, what are the DNA experts saying?

In excess of a hundred and fifty tribes have been tested now, these are scattered all over north and central and South America, even to Greenland. And from that survey, in excess of five and a half thousand individuals have been involved and have been tested, from those five and a half thousand, 99.4% of Native Americans have a mitochondrial DNA lineage that originated in Asia. There can be no question: 99.4%. The other 0.6% have either a European or an African mitochondrial lineage. The very tiny minority of European and African lineages that they do find came after Columbus. Currently on the available evidence there’s nothing to suggest a [Native American Indian] relationship whatsoever with Israelites.
(Dr. Simon Southerton, Molecular Biologist)

There is no compelling evidence for a connection between Jewish populations and Native American populations based on genetics. Probably the most fundamental and the most definitive evidence for that has been based on mitochondrial and Y-chromosome data. If you look at genes in Native Americans, they came from their ancestors. They had to come from their ancestral populations, and those ancestors lived somewhere. You can look for those genes in Jewish populations, but you don’t find them. If you look at genes that are most commonly found in Native American populations and those that are most commonly found in Jewish populations, they don’t coincide at all.
(Dr. David Glenn Smith, Molecular Anthropologist, University of California-Davis)

I’ve been involved in a number of research projects that had examined DNA variations in ancient populations in the Americas. ... I don’t know of any data that suggests particular similarity of Native American populations to any population of the Middle East.
(Dr. Dennis O’Rourke, Molecular Anthropologist, University of Utah) 


I’ve been working as an anthropologist either as a graduate student or professional since the early 1980s. I personally have never seen any evidence of Hebrew origin of Native Americans. I don’t know of any of my colleagues in mainstream anthropology who are trying to prove a Hebrew origin for Native Americans.
(Dr. Stephen L. Whittington, Biological Anthropologist, University of Maine) 

All DNA testing of pre-1492 skeletal remains (i.e., ancient; before Columbus arrived in the New World) indicates only a northern Asia origin.

First we identify pre-historic populations where skeletal material has been discovered. We take fairly small skeletal samples, usually a fragment of a rib, and it’s a simple chemical process to release the nucleic acids, or the DNA, that is contained within that bony matrix. ... Well there was clearly substantial admixture between European colonists and many Native American populations at the time of initial European contact, and subsequently. All of our ancient samples predate that contact, so there’s no evidence of admixture in our ancient samples.
(Dr. Dennis O’Rourke, Molecular Anthropologist, University of Utah)

What we find on ancient human remains from the new world is DNA that is related to DNA in populations in north Asia.
(Dr. Stephen L. Whittington, Biological Anthropologist, University of Maine)

Although Hebrew DNA has been found in a number of specific people groups from other parts of the world, no Hebrew DNA has ever been found in the DNA of Native American Indians.

Thomas Murphy, (anthropologist, Mormon scholar, and DNA researcher), acknowledges the problem that the DNA evidence presents for the historical accuracy of the Book of Mormon. “We [i.e., Mormons] are in a dilemma now, the genetic evidence shows clearly that American Indians are not Hebrews, they are not Israelites. The Book of Mormon is not true.”

The DNA vs. The Book of Mormon documentary accurately presents the consensus of the scientific community that northern Asia — not Israel — is the place of origin of the Native American Indians. The documentary is a must see for all those who view the Book of Mormon as an accurate history of the Native American Indians.

 

You can view the documentary online on the Sourceflix website.