Source:Gospel Topics:Book of Mormon Translation:These two instruments—the interpreters and the seer stone—were apparently interchangeable

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Gospel Topics: "These two instruments—the interpreters and the seer stone—were apparently interchangeable and worked in much the same way"

Gospel Topics on LDS.org:

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. In ancient times, Israelite priests used the Urim and Thummim to assist in receiving divine communications. Although commentators differ on the nature of the instrument, several ancient sources state that the instrument involved stones that lit up or were divinely illumin[at]ed. Latter-day Saints later understood the term “Urim and Thummim” to refer exclusively to the interpreters. Joseph Smith and others, however, seem to have understood the term more as a descriptive category of instruments for obtaining divine revelations and less as the name of a specific instrument.[1]

Notes

  1. "Book of Mormon Translation," Gospel Topics on LDS.org (2013).