Question: What does the Church teach investigators and members regarding the method by which the Book of Mormon was produced?


Question: What does the Church teach investigators and members regarding the method by which the Book of Mormon was produced?

Criticism of what the Church teaches regarding the translation process

One critical website offers the following:

Why doesn't the church be honest when teaching the method to investigators or even its own members? The short answer of course is that it would make the whole story sound unbelievable. Very few people in the 21st Century would likely join the church if the missionaries plainly taught that Joseph put his face in a hat with a common stone in it and translated the Book of Mormon when the plates were either covered so no one, including Joseph could see them or that the plates were hidden in the woods when he translated them. But that doesn't make it right to deceive innocent truthseekers. [1]

The Church teaches that the Book of Mormon was translated by the "gift and power of God" using the "Urim and Thummim"

The Church teaches that the Book of Mormon was translated by the "gift and power of God" using the "Urim and Thummim." The term "Urim and Thummim" was applied to both the Nephite interpreters that were recovered with the plates, and Joseph Smith's own seer stone. Both instruments were used in the translation process.

The Church states that, "These two instruments—the interpreters and the seer stone—were apparently interchangeable and worked in much the same way such that, in the course of time, Joseph Smith and his associates often used the term “Urim and Thummim” to refer to the single stone as well as the interpreters. [2]

Notes

  1. "Translation of the Book of Mormon," MormonThink.com
  2. "Book of Mormon Translation," Gospel Topics on LDS.org