The basic idea is that a few packets could be made from Book of Mormon passages and alternative passages, and then ask study participants to pray about each of them, and report which of the packets they feel is true. Neither the participants nor the experimenters will know which packet contains the real Book of Mormon passages.
Alternative texts would have to meet a few desired attributes:
- The LDS church must consider the alternative text false
- The text must be broadly compatible with Mormon doctrine
- The text could be written in a similar style as Book of Mormon or D&C passages
- The text should be something that many people really believe (or believed) to be true
- The Sealed Portion, by Christopher Nemelka
- The James Strang revelations (comparable to D&C revelations)
- Sidney Rigdon revelations (also comparable to D&C revelations)
- The Quran
- Claim to have sincere desires for truth
- Claim to have faith in Christ
- Looking for a new religion, and interested in Mormonism
- Not very knowledgeable with Mormon doctrine or the Book of Mormon
Interpretation of results
If the Book of Mormon's promise is true, then 100% of the study participants who have sincere desires for truth and have faith in Christ should identify it as true. To account for dishonest participants, we should allow a little leeway. I would expect the Book of Mormon to be selected by at least 90% of participants if it is true, and anything less than that I would interpret as indicating falsehood.