Skip to content

Gospel Topic Essay: 003: Book of Mormon Translation

We continue our tour of the Gospel Topics Essays and with the essay Book of Mormon Translation.  The Goal- To share the LDS Church’s Gospel Topic Essays and help the both the believing member and the non-believer get a sense of the why these essays were written, who the intended audience is, whether these essays resolve the concerns of the faithful and non-believer and why they perhaps these essays even add to the disbelief of those who skeptical of the issues they find in Mormon History.  the audio on this episode is a little distorted in places and we apologize for that.

Co-Hosts of this episode

Allan Mount is Co-host of the Marriage on a Tightrope podcast with his wife Kattie. After 35 faithful years in the church, it was the Gospel Topic Essays that acted as a catalyst to his faith transition. He is a sales director for a technology company in South Jordan Utah. Kattie and Allan have 4 children between the ages of 5 and 13.

Anthony Miller is an entrepreneur and education enthusiast in Billings, Montana, with Masters degrees in Business Administration and in Financial Services. After a lifetime of faithful membership in the church, he experienced a faith transition after he stumbled across the Gospel Topics Essays and similar materials in 2016, while he was searching for resources to support his adult gay son. Anthony blogs at and is a frequent contributor to post and progressive Mormon support communities.

Bill Reel is a media producer and Pawn Shop Broker and lives in Southern Utah.  Bill experienced a deep faith shift while serving as a LDS Bishop in 2012.  Since then has has worked to be a voice to help others reconcile the complex issues of Mormonism.  He is the the lead contributor of the Mormon Primer and host of Mormon Discussion Podcast


Gospel Topic Essay on Book Mormon Translation

Interpreter Article on the instruments proposed for the Book of Mormon Translation

Mormon Think juxtaposed with FairMormon on this topic

In spite of the Church admitting its use many dismiss the seer stone

Joseph Smith’s treasure digging 

Locations of Joseph Smith’s of Treasure Digging

Treasure Digging generally


8 thoughts on “Gospel Topic Essay: 003: Book of Mormon Translation”

  1. Too many LDS contradictions for me to buy it. Why hasn’t any prophet, seer and relevator back then or now whipped out a seer stone an d recovered that 116 pages using the council of 50?

  2. I am eating up your podcasts on the “Gospel Topics Essays”! (Metaphorically speaking, of course.) I LOVE ‘EM, GUYS!

    The second I see that you’ve released one, I automatically know what I’ll be doing for the next couple of hours…listening and nothing else. All three of you: thanks so much for taking all of that extra time to talk, research, and produce them.

  3. Pingback: Gospel Topic Essay: Book of Mormon Translation – Unpacking Ambiguity

  4. Regarding the Nephi/Moroni angel issue: I recently tried to get to the bottom of that. It seems like Joseph started off using Moroni (see D&C 37, also Luman Walters). Then switched to Nephi and it seemed to be his favorite till his death. Notably, between the JSH draft 2 and 3, Joseph updated and embellished several passages, including some text immediately before and after the reference to “Nephi” angel. Why didn’t he edit Nephi to Moroni? Because he preferred Nephi.

    Then in the 1870s Brigham Young changed all the accounts to “Moroni”.

  5. Interesting to learn that Richard Lloyd Andersen contented that JS didn’t hide his money digging days. For me the key point is that the Church did. While on my mission in 1980, accusations of JS being a treasure seeker which was a common accusation which Church apologists labeled as lies, damn lies. Do we have any Church lesson manuals that teach about JS’s treasure seeking days?

  6. Loving these! Love the tone. Totally shareable with faithful and nuanced friends alike.
    Question: Samuel 14:41 was quoted when talking about the Urim and Thummim at about 49 minutes. I don’t see the verse being the same as the one read. Was that misquoted?

  7. Regarding Emma Smiths testimony of the translation of the Book of Mormon…After the main body of the church left for Utah Emma and her family created a new church call the Reorganized LDS church. This church also believed in the Book of Mormon. She would not have said anything else other than it was an inspired work. To do otherwise would have been an affront to her family and the work they spent the rest of their lives promoting. Of course, she was openly resentful of polygamy and so the new church did not practice it and taught against it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *