Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Seer Stone v. Urim and Thummim: Book of Mormon Translation on Trial

I became keenly interested in the translation method of the Book of Mormon after reading the book, Joseph Smith's Seer Stones, by Michael Hubbard Mackay and Nicholas J. Frederick.

This book prompted further purchases and months of research. It also inspired a number of posts here at AF under the LABEL: Book of Mormon-translation method—the first of which was published back on June 29, 2017 (link).

A few months after the first post of the series, I published a thread (link) that raised a number of serious questions concerning the paradigm shift in the understanding of the translation method/process of the Book of Mormon by many Latter-day Saints. Foremost among those questions was the following:

The question that needs to be asked is: WHY has Kirkham's and Nibley's assessments been jettisoned by so many 21st century LDS scholars?

I immediately followed the above question with some reasons provided by LDS scholars who have embraced the paradigm shift—reasons which I am currently of the opinion are somewhat dubious in nature.

Now, up until just a few days ago, I thought I was pretty much the sole 'voice in the wilderness' who had some serious questions concerning this paradigm shift in the understanding of the Book of Mormon translation method. Last week, I finished reading the recently published book, Seer Stone v. Urim and Thummim: Book of Mormon Translation on Trial—I now know that I am not alone.

This book focuses on a number of the extant 'witnesses' of the Book of Mormon translation method/process, including an important, detailed examination of David Whitmer. His chapter, "David Whitmer vs. David Whitmer" (#14), is of particular interest, exposing a number of inconsistencies in the recorded Whitmer statements.

I sincerely hope that folk interested in this topic will purchase the book, and share their reflections on it.

The book can be obtained via Amazon (link), or directly through the publisher (link).

Grace and peace,



Julie said...

Don't you just LOVE this new book??? I have read this book at least 3 times, and every time I do I learn more than before and my love for Joseph grows deeper. This book cuts through so much garbage history put out by supposed historians or our current day. President Packer said it best when he, himself, took on the scholars/historians when he said “ That historian or scholar who delights in pointing out the weakness and frailties of present or past leaders destroys faith. A destroyer of faith—particularly one within the Church, and more particularly one who is employed specifically to build faith—places himself in great spiritual jeopardy. He is serving the wrong master, and unless he repents, he will not be among the faithful in the eternities.

One who chooses to follow the tenets of his profession, regardless of how they may injure the Church or destroy the faith of those not ready for “advanced history,” is himself in spiritual jeopardy. If that one is a member of the Church, he has broken his covenants and will be accountable. After all of the tomorrows of mortality have been finished, he will not stand where he might have stood.”

I believe these attacks on Joseph will stop when each family like yourself reads this book and says it is enough and begins to live his teachings with exactness!

Cory said...

Every one of the primary sources used to back up the claim that Joseph used the seer stone to translate the Book of Mormon is suspect. They're just not credible. The authors do an excellent job presenting that case. It's unfortunate that so many people are accepting the new narrative around the translation process and don't do research themselves to find the truth.

David Waltz said...

Hi Julie,

Thanks much for taking the time to share your thoughts with me. You wrote:

==Don't you just LOVE this new book???==

I do, and can't wait for more of the forthcoming contributions from the Stoddard's that they mentioned at the end of the book.

Take care and God bless,


David Waltz said...

Hello Cory,

Thanks much for taking the time to comment. I concur with everything you wrote.

Grace and peace,