A Young Folk’s History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, p. 21;“The Urim and Thummim consisted of two transparent stones, clear as crystal, set in two rims of a bow. It was used in ancient times by the seers, and through it they received revelations of things past and future. You may read about this instrument in the Bible, in Exodus, 28:30; and Ezra 2:63.”

Exodus 28:30; “And thou shalt put in the breastplate of judgment the Urim and the Thummim; and they shall be upon Aaron’s heart, when he goeth in before the LORD: and Aaron shall bear the judgment of the children of Israel upon his heart before the LORD continually.”

Ezra 2:63; “And the Tirshatha said unto them, that they should not eat of the most holy things, till there stood up a priest with Urim and with Thummim.”

The ‘urim and thummim’ has been a huge topic of discussion within Mormonism since the time Joe Smith claimed he translated his gold plates with the aid of the two said items.

All students of Mormonism are well aware that every biblical truth God revealed to mankind has been turned on its proverbial head, courtesy of Joseph Smith, Jr. He left no stone unturned while looking for buried treasure, and in doing so managed to unearth what could arguably be the biggest cash-pot of confusion mankind has ever known.

In my 50+ years of dealing with Mormonism, I’ve not found one topic that hasn’t been changed to suit the needs of Joe Smith’s god. The narrative in the book noted above is a good example of how they’ve exchanged the truth for a lie (Ro. 1:25), and had no shame while even doing so in their lies to children. The two verses they listed in their storyline had nothing to do with defining the urim and thummim.

Today’s topic as we noted, is about a somewhat obscure Bible topic – the urim and thummim. Both are mentioned in conjunction with the breastplate of Aaron who worked in the temple of God.

Scholars today still aren’t completely sure what these two words fully meant. Some like Matthew Henry, have surmised the two words were written by either Moses, or God Himself, on the breastplate Aaron wore inside the Holy of Holies while making sacrifices to God. Still others believe they were two of the brilliant jeweled stones attached to the breastplate.

What we do know for sure is what they were not. This means they weren’t the spectacles Smith claimed he used when translating the gold plates. Pictures of Smith wearing the strange glasses have been published by the Church for years now, but they’re only an artist’s rendition of what they may have looked like because no one but Smith ever saw them. He claimed that God took them from him when his scribe Martin Harris lost the original 116 pages they had translated.

Despite Smith’s tall tale, we know the urim and thummim from the Bible wasn’t a tool to foretell the future, or to interpret a foreign language.

Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance defines the two words this way –

ûrîm – is the transliteration for urim and it means ‘lights; urim, the oracular brilliancy of the figures in the high-priest’s breastplate’.
Used 7x in the OT

tummîm is the transliteration for thummim, and is the ‘plural of H8537 (tom); perfections, i.e. (technical) one of the epithets of the objects in the high-priest’s breastplate as an emblem of complete Truth’.
Used 5x in the OT

With Love in Christ;


1 Corinthians 1:18 ‘For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.’