“By his grace ye may be perfect in Christ”: Some LDS thoughts on Grace and Commandments

July 30, 2009

Martin Luther dismissed the Sermon on the Mount as “the devil’s masterpiece” (ein Meister Stuck des Teuffels, German spelling as in original) (“Das heißt ein Meister Stuck des Teufels”, D. Martin Luthers Werke (Weimar, 1906), vol. 6, pg. 10). Luther called the Sermon on the Mount “the devil’s masterpiece” because, as he surmised in the essay, “the devil so masterfully distorts and perverts (verdrehet und verkeret) Christ’s true meaning through his Apostle [Matthew] especially in the fifth chapter”. (See the discussion of this, which includes the above quote, in John W. Welch, The Sermon on the Mount in the Light of the Temple, pg. 36 (London: Ashgate, 2009)). Martin Luther appears to have believed that Christ’s teachings in the Sermon on the Mount (as recorded by Matthew) weren’t compatible with what he (Luther) wanted the Gospel to mean, based on his own selection and elevation of a few verses from Paul over the rest of the corpus of scripture. Read the rest of this entry »

BOMB*: A Homily on Deliverance for Rosh Hashanah

September 10, 2008

The sons of mothers and fathers who prostrated themselves before a hostile army to be slaughtered at will for their religious beliefs (Alma 24:21) knew that there were worse things in this world than dying firm in their faith — Read the rest of this entry »

BOMB*: A Voice to Shake the Earth

July 29, 2008

A lot of water passed under the bridge between Alma the Younger’s dramatic conversion to the Gospel of Jesus Christ as a young man and his exclamation of desire to speak with the same voice of an angel that had shaken him to his very core those decades earlier. Read the rest of this entry »

Some Still Talk of the Old Gifts, Part II

March 3, 2008

Brother I.C. was baptized last Saturday. Yesterday during Fast and Testimony meeting, he stood to share his most recent miracle — that of finding the Gospel. Read the rest of this entry »

BOMB: Returning To The Tents Of Our Fathers

January 12, 2008

“And it came to pass that I, Nephi, returned from speaking with the Lord, to the tent of my father.” (1 Nephi 3:1)

This short, oft-overlooked little verse in 1 Nephi 3 speaks volumes regarding Nephi’s character, and teaches us how we, like Nephi, should return from sacred experiences peering into the Heavenly realm back into the often lone and dreary wilderness of this world. (and see also 1 Nephi 15:1)

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BOMB: My First Time

December 30, 2007

I still remember clearly my first time. I was 18, and sitting alone in my warm dorm room on a cold, sleety, Rexburg morning in the Fall. The hall outside was quiet, and a tranquil ambience enveloped the softly lamplit room, a cozy contrast to the gray, blustery day outside the window.

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