Seer Stone Essay

1467 Words 6 Pages
When you think of the phrase “seer stone,” there is usually a negative connotation that goes along with it. Why is that? Joseph Smith used a seer stone as one of the primary instruments in his translation of the Book of Mormon, and they are mentioned as legitimate objects throughout the scriptures. So why do we as members of the church hesitate to discuss seer stones, and why do non-members find exceeding criticism in them? I hope to answer these questions in my analysis. I will also explore more of the history of the seer stone in church history, as well as some of the doctrine attached to the use of a seer stone.
Doctrine and Covenants 28 was given in response to Hiram Page, who was receiving revelations by the aid of his own seer stone
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Interestingly, this section is directed to Oliver Cowdrey and not to Hiram Page. This may be because Oliver had already participated in many spiritual experiences to this point – the translation of the Book of Mormon and the restoration of the Aaronic and Melchizedek priesthoods. With all this experience, Joseph and ultimately the Lord needed Oliver to be a steady leader of the church with good judgement. This revelation revealed to Oliver, and to us today, that only Joseph was able to receive revelations and commandments for the church.
The history of this particular section, as well as the common belief about seer stones in this time period brings forth some interesting doctrinal topics. First of all, seer stones are known to have been used even since biblical times. The Urim and Thummim is another type of translation/revelation instrument that is mentioned and used throughout the bible (Ex. 28:30; Lev. 8:8; Num. 27:21; Deut. 33:8; 1 Sam. 28:6; Ezra 2:63). Mosiah 28:13 tells us Mosiah “translated [the plates of Jared] by the means of those two stones which were fastened into the two rims of a bow.” Exodus 28:30 tells us the “Urim and the Thummim shall be upon
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There are a few lessons we can take from this section of scripture. As with all sections of the Doctrine and Covenants, it all began with a question. Joseph could have tried to handle this situation himself, without involving the Lord. However, this could have pushed Hiram Page away from the fold, and Oliver Cowdrey would not have been taught the lesson he needed to learn. By inquiring of the Lord, Joseph shows us the correct way to handle controversy within the church, and within our own lives. As the old saying goes, there is no such thing as a bad question. The Lord knows exactly what we need to hear, all he asks of us is that we reach out in prayer and supplication. I can also learn from the story of Hiram Page. He was one of the 8 witnesses to the Book of Mormon, and he was still easily deceived by Satan. This reminds me of the importance to constantly be renewing my covenants and replenishing my testimony. I could have the strongest spiritual experience of my life right now, but that does not guarantee my faithfulness. The Lord is telling me to continue doing the little things, like prayer; scripture study; and partaking of the sacrament – so that I may recognize the promptings of the Holy Ghost and not be

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