The Book of Mormon 15/18
In John 3:17, 1 Timothy 1:15, and Matthew 9:12-13, it says that Jesus did not come into the world to judge the world or to call the righteous. Rather, he came into the world to save sinners. But the Jesus of the New Testament is unlike the Jesus of the BOM in this regard. In 3 Nephi 9, Jesus makes his appearance in America and utterly destroys sixteen different cities, burning some with fire and causing others to sink into the ocean or be buried beneath hills. These events were all judgments for the wickedness and unrighteousness of the inhabitants of those cities. Then Jesus offers the gospel to the rest, saying, "O all ye that are spared because ye were more righteous than they, will ye not now repent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you?" (3 Nephi 9:13).
I went to Yahoo Answers and asked, "Did Jesus come to call the righteous or did he come to call sinners? If he came to call the sinners, why did he destroy them BEFORE offering the gospel? Why did he offer the gospel to the righteous? If they are righteous, why do they need to be saved? Or am I misunderstanding 3 Nephi 9, John 3:17, Matthew 9:12-13, and 1 Timothy 1:15? Or is the New Testament unreliable? Or is the BOM unreliable?"
Some Mormons argued that there was no inconsistency since God had destroyed cities in the Old Testament. I grant that there is no inconsistency on God's part in destroying cities because of sin. The inconsistency is in the mission of Jesus when he came to earth--whether he came to call the righteous or sinners.
Other Mormons said that all these people had already heard the gospel, and because they were so wicked, there was no hope for them. The survivors were not without sin; they just weren't as sinful as those Jesus destroyed. There was still hope for them.