REVIEW: Re-Reading Job

REVIEW: Re-Reading Job

What matters more – understanding why people suffer, or knowing how we should respond when people are suffering? I have always been fascinated by the Book of Job.  It’s a messy book, and a subversive book. The biggest take-away I’d always gotten from it was that I had the ability to use Job’s comforters as an illustration and example of how not to comfort who is suffering (IE, with theological platitudes that tend to serve more to comfort the worldview of…

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Meditation on the Word

Meditation on the Word

Consider the word Elephant. If I break down the word Elephant, I find many parts. Three Es, an L, a P, an H, an A an N and a T. I can study each of these letters in isolation for ages. I can learn how they gained their present form, why they interact the way they do, and perhaps how they might have been pronounced or rhymed in a different day. When I look around, I  will see friends, acquaintances,…

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REVIEW: Authoring the Old Testament: Genesis–Deuteronomy

REVIEW: Authoring the Old Testament: Genesis–Deuteronomy

Can a faithful Latter-day Saint accept the possibility that what are commonly called the Books of Moses were not actually written by Moses? Why would we want to? Would this necessarily undermine scriptural authority, and go against what is seen as clear modern revelation? These are important and relevant questions for Mormons! And now, for the first time, they are properly addressed in a faithful, and easy to understand manner. In this book, Authoring the Old Testament: Genesis – Deuteronomy,…

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Worlds Without Number

Worlds Without Number

One of the most beautiful and profound passages in Adam Miller’s Letters to a Young Mormon (see my review here, and for heaven’s sake, buy the book here!) is in regards to Science, and the Creation – which also happens to be the topic for this week’s Gospel Doctrine Sunday School Class in many wards. Miller discusses the Genesis creation account, and notes that it is framed using the cosmology, or ‘world picture’ in the mind of the pre-scientific ancients,…

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REVIEW: Letters to a Young Mormon

REVIEW: Letters to a Young Mormon

The Neal A. Maxwell Institute has just released the first volume in their ‘Living Faith’ series. Letters to a Young Mormon, by Adam Miller, is a small, pocket-sized book with barely 70 full pages of text. I’m finding it very hard to describe this book. Mainly because I’m trying to restrain my initial impressions to shout HALLELUJAH from the housetops at its very existence. This book, if read and distributed, has the power to do extraordinary good. If you look…

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Mourning With Those That Mourn: A Homily on the Lord’s Supper

Mourning With Those That Mourn: A Homily on the Lord’s Supper

The following is adapted from a message I presented as a Sacrament Meeting talk in two wards of the Sugar Hill Georgia Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In one of the earliest of our New Testament Scriptures, the Apostle Paul writes to the Christian community in Corinth. It appears they had taken the tradition of the Lord’s Supper, and simply merged it as part of a regularly scheduled raucous feasting (see 1 Corinthians 11:18–34 )….

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REVIEW: War and Peace In Our Time: Mormon Perspectives

REVIEW: War and Peace In Our Time: Mormon Perspectives

Title: “War & Peace In Our Time: Mormon Perspectives” Editors: Patrick Q. Mason, J. Davis Pulspher, Richard L. Bushman Publisher: Greg Kofford Books Year: 2012 Price: $29.95 (Paperback),  or in a two-part Kindle edition, priced at $9.95 each: Part 1, Part 2. If you’re looking for a sign that Mormon Studies is not only maturing, but has significant practical, political and theological relevance, I’ve found your book. If you’re looking for evidence that smart, faithful, and creative Latter-day Saints can…

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New Youth Curriculum, and the Digital Facilitation of New Revelation

New Youth Curriculum, and the Digital Facilitation of New Revelation

  [Cross posted over at Worlds Without End: A Mormon Studies Roundtable, a wonderful group blog where I have recently become a contributor] I have often considered the massive practical difficulties in regards to promulgation that would be involved if the Church today were to present a radical, paradigm-, policy- or doctrinal-shifting revelation, the likes of 1978’s Official Declaration 2. This difficulty can be seen on a smaller scale, with relatively minor decisions to subtly update the presentation of the…

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REVIEW and MUSINGS – Brigham Young: Pioneer Prophet

REVIEW and MUSINGS – Brigham Young: Pioneer Prophet

John Turner’s Brigham Young: Pioneer Prophet is an excellent book. An important book. And a deeply inconvenient book. Brigham Young holds an interesting place in the lives of Latter-day Saints. At the same time we celebrate his leadership of the Twelve following Joseph’s death, his leading of the Exodus West, and the firm establishment of the building blocks undeniably leading to the longevity and survival of the Church, it is quite generally understood that, doctrinally, quotes by Brigham Young should…

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Book of Mormon, Joseph Spencer, and Collective Salvation

Book of Mormon, Joseph Spencer, and Collective Salvation

I think we’re finally being to see the fruits of what President Benson was really talking about, in regards to taking the Book of Mormon seriously. On the heels of Brant Gardner’s Second Witness Book of Mormon Commentary Series, published by Kofford Books, and Grant Hardy’s groundbreaking Understanding the Book of Mormon, published by Oxford, the wonderful Salt Press just released an absolutely fantastic book, called “An Other Testament: On Typology”, by Joseph M. Spencer. This book has already been…

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