In 2015, I was watching television when a gigantic noise erupted outside. I nervously went out to investigate. To my surprise, every true blue Mormon was running in the middle of the street shouting and celebrating at the top of their lungs. I started running beside them to figure out what all this commotion was about.
“What is going on?” I asked two missionaries dressed in their white shirts and ties, who were in the middle of the pack.
“The Church just released a picture of the seer stone today. Haven’t you heard? It is everywhere. We all thought it was a Mormon myth that anti’s had made up.”
“Why the celebrating about it?” I asked.
“Our Church is so open about these things. Isn’t that a gosh darn good reason to celebrate?” said the missionary.
“It is 2015. They could of released it years and years ago, right?”
“Wow! What are you? Why spoil this great celebration.”
I ran inside and printed out a copy of a picture of the actual event. It showed the fifteen apostles yelling, kicking, screaming, and hemming and hawing, because they had to release a picture of a brown stone. I ran back and caught up with the missionary.
“This is what really happened. They only release information like this when they have no other options left,” I said in between the gulps of air.
” They have always been open with us,” he yelled as he ran away.
I tried to throw him a copy of Boyd K Packer’s October 2001 Conference talk where he flat out lied, but he was gone. It is frustrating talking to these true believing members. They run too fast for me. If any of you want to hang around, I would like to review a quote from that talk.
Packer is the guy who said, “Some things that are true are not very useful.
That historian or scholar who delights in pointing out the weaknesses 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. … Do not spread disease germs!”
– Apostle Boyd K. Packer, “The Mantle is Far, Far Greater Than the Intellect“, 1981, BYU Studies, Vol. 21, No. 3, pp. 259-271
He was only into faith promoting stories and not interested in factual truth and demonstrates that in this talk. Speaking of the Book of Mormon, he said “The writings on the plates were translated by use of a Urim and Thummim, which is referred to a number of times in the Old Testament and described by Hebrew scholars as an instrument “whereby the revelation was given and truth declared.”
In 2001, the Church was not talking about seer stones, so Packer keeps to the company line about the Urim and Thummim as the means of translation. No mention of Joseph sticking his head in a hat and looking at a stone that was dug up in New York. No mention that the plates were not used at all in the process. No mention that “translation” has been changed by Church apologists to “revelation.” No mention of the deceptive pictures the Church put out for years showing Joseph Smith laboring over the plates doing an actual translation.
While many paintings and pictures used in Mormon visitor’s centers and books depict Joseph Smith leaning over the plates, many contemporaries of his admit that he used a hat and a seer stone as a means of bringing about the Book of Mormon.
In his Comprehensive History of the Church, Brigham H. Roberts quotes Martin Harris, one of the three witnesses whose name is found in every edition of the Book of Mormon since its original edition. Harris said that Smith possessed a seer stone, described by Roberts as a “chocolate-colored, somewhat egg-shaped stone which the Prophet found while digging a well in company with his brother Hyrum.” Roberts goes on to state that it was by using this stone that “Joseph was able to translate the characters engraven on the plates”
First hand accounts describe the process this way,
“By aid of the Seer Stone, sentences would appear and were read by the Prophet and written by Martin, and when finished he would say ‘written;’ and if correctly written, the sentence would disappear and another appear in its place; but if not written correctly it remained until corrected, so that the translation was just as it was engraven on the plates, precisely in the language then used”.
This goes along with David Whitmer’s account. He said,
“I will now give you a description of the manner in which the Book of Mormon was translated. Joseph Smith would put the seer stone into a hat, and put his face in the hat, drawing it closely around his face to exclude the light; and in the darkness the spiritual light would shine. A piece of something resembling parchment would appear, and under it was the interpretation in English. Brother Joseph would read off the English to Oliver Cowdery, who was his principal scribe, and when it was written down and repeated to brother Joseph to see if it was correct, then it would disappear, and another character with the interpretation would appear. Thus the Book of Mormon was translated by the gift and power of God, and not by any power of man.”
Censorship is alive and well in the Church and only changes when outside forces put pressure on the Brethren to come clean! For all those so called agitators and anti’s, keep up the great work!