The Truth Behind Seer Stones and the Translation of Book of Mormon

seer stone book of mormon joseph smith

Mason Allred and Mark Ashurst-McGee of the LDS Church History Department discuss the various historical accounts of the Book of Mormon translation process, including accounts of Joseph Smith using a seer stone to translate the ancient record and accounts of Joseph Smith using Urim and Thummim.

Mason Allred and Mark Ashurst-McGee are historians and editors at The Joseph Smith Papers documentary editing project.

They explore what we know, and what we don’t, based on the historical information available to us.

 

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3 Comments

  • No one seems willing to admit it, but Joseph Smith as fairly ignorant of the Book of Mormon’s doctrine. He never cited it. He never taught from it. He certainly didn’t base the church on it. We have accounts of some 177 Nauvoo sermons

    The Book of Mormon:

    – Condemns proxy baptism
    – Condemns post-mortal repentance
    – Condemns polygamy (there is no “escape clause” in Jacob 2)
    – Refutes the concept of plural Gods
    – Refutes LDS teachings on Melchizedek priesthood
    – Doesn’t once mention Levitical/Aaronic priesthood
    – Plainly and clearly states that Jesus Christ IS God — The one and only God.

    Nephi said that by at least three witness would God establish his word. Which of the following LDS doctrines do we have three of, or even two? Why aren’t any of things mentioned in the Book of Mormon if it ostensibly contains the fullness of the Gospel?

    – Eternal/celestial marriage
    – Temple endowment
    – Eternal familes
    – Three degrees of glory
    – Man becoming Gods
    – Melchizedek priesthood
    – Post-mortal progression

    Jesus told the Nephites that his doctrine was simple: faith, repentance, baptism of water/fire, love God and man, and endure to the end–and that ANYTHING more or less than this came from evil. ANYTHING.

    We need to think about that.

  • Matt. Why should Joseph base the church on the Book of Mormon?thd bible gives clear understanding of the primitive church (ephesians) plus the church was established in book of mormon times as restored in our times. you didnt livein Joseph smiths time…nor did you hear all his sermons. please dont assume. as for temple endowments etc…they had temples in bible times..do we have the knowlege of what happened in temples in those times? no! so thats part of the revelations that are documented in the Doctrine and covenants
    Joseph wasnt dumped on..
    everything in the Lords timing. why so critical or fault finding it seems. the ancient prophets had more than one wife.
    again…
    what the Lord deems is right.is right.
    none of us can question Him for the timing of different laws.
    just like the israelites had food restrictions in the desert..these are lifted in our day.

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Mason Allred and Mark Ashurst-McGee of the LDS Church History Department discuss the various historical accounts of the Book of Mormon translation process, including...
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