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June 26, 2022

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ChrisFebruary 27, 2021

I love this new book by the Givens, and love their other writings as well. As I read some of these comments, they seem to indicate that all members of the church "get it"...and understand God's love and the Savior's Grace. But they don't. Growing up in this church I was taught repeatedly to "work out my own salvation" and to put my shoulder to the wheel...that somehow the atonement would just make up the difference between how I finally ended up and "perfection". All of that helped to make a mess of my life... I have learned that my Father, Mother, and Savior love me...and each of us...equally and more than we can possibly understand, and that their love can only be experienced, not explained. I've learned that "salvation" doesn't happen in a vacuum, only in a family and community, and I can partner with Jesus every day...I never have to go it alone. I do not ever, and cannot, earn Their love. And I cannot do anything to make them love me less, nor can I run away from Their love (I tried). I've learned guilt and shame don't work, and the Savior always "invites", and that the commandments are Their boundaries to keep me safe and to help me choose joy. Realky, there are only two commandments...love God and love people. If I can successfully live those two, everything falls into place, and it's easy to live inside the boundaries. Living in fear of God, of some eternal punishment, or of disappointing God doesn't work, and it never has. God is love...literally. If we are to have joy, even while "losing" our life helping others, we must quit trying to be "perfect"...and we wonder why so many young people are leaving the church. As the Givens say, it is always our choice, and as we choose Jesus every day life is so much better! And yes, we are wounded...programmed by parents, teachers, friends, church leaders, social media, and many others...and above all else, the Savior is our Healer.

Gary BealFebruary 16, 2021

I have read the Givens' previous books (though not this new one) and find their perspective insightful, relevant, and comforting. However, like Bro. Hancock, sometimes it feels like they stray too far in re-framing what the scriptures say about the nature of sin and man's proclivities to go contrary to God's commands. For instance, in previous books they seem to downplay the distinctions regarding being "saved" in the Telestial kingdom, or the Terrestrial kingdom, versus being "saved" in the Celestial kingdom. I haven't decided for myself if this is a trivial or fundamental concern about their theology, but I do credit them with helping me to understand better the traditional Western Christian paradigm of guilt and depravity that does (wrongly) influence some of the ways that otherwise faithful Latter-Day Saints misapply the Gospel of Christ.

Dennis HorneFebruary 16, 2021

As I read the Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Prince and study the teachings of the prophets, I find in them more than sufficient and glorious teachings about what the Restoration is and means. It is a return to the Church that Jesus and His apostles set up, and to the Abrahamic Covenant. I see in these teachings sufficient and complete vocabulary--scriptural vocabulary--for any and all true and edifying gospel purposes. When we speak from the scriptures, we get our doctrine right. My scriptures, the standard works, and the teachings of the prophets that I read, tell me that the core of the atonement of Jesus Christ is repentance from sin, whereby my guilt is washed away by the blood of Christ. As for love, in a recent Conference address President Oaks taught: “The kingdom of glory to which we are assigned in the Final Judgment is not determined by love but by the law that God has given us.” There is no such thing as universal exaltation, while any church can deliver salvation (immortality) in the Telestial or Terrestrial Kingdoms of glory. So also taught Pres. Oaks. A multitude of reasons convince me to get my doctrine from the prophets instead of these authors. I don't believe the Church needs a course correction (steadying of the ark) unless it comes from Jesus, who is the head of the Church, through Russell M. Nelson who is its current mortal president and director. He tells me to repent of my sins, not ignore guilt or heal "woundedness." I am so glad I have prophets to look to instead of academics whose views I can't square with the scriptures.

I've needed thisFebruary 16, 2021

@Boanergest Rubalcava--congratulations on "getting" it! But for many members, myself included, the Givens' book promises to be a fantastic guide for those of us who are subject to Augustinian tendencies, who are members but sucked in by the Protestant ideas and don't even realize it. Their book is meant to be liberating and consoling for those members who can't quite delineate between true and counter gospel. I look forward to reading the full text. It's an answer to prayers.

Harold RustFebruary 16, 2021

I agree with Boanerges Rubalcsvs that this article stretched out in repetitive intellectualism what to many members of the Church is a very simple summary of our relationship with God: He wants us to follow the Savior and become perfect. While it is within our agency to either keep working toward that goal or quitting at some point, He will patiently support us as long as it takes if we do keep trying. He won’t take away our responsibility to repent fully; but the atonement is that final step in perfection when we have proven a willingness to keep changing in all respects until completely aligned with our Savior.

Boanerges RubalcavaFebruary 15, 2021

I do not understand the worries either of the Givens or of the author of this article. The restored gospel is very simple and clear, we are here because of love not because of fear.I and I would say most of the converted people to the restored gospel understand it perfectly and we do not need to fill so many pages with "intellectual" repetitions of what Joseph Smith taught us since 200 years ago. The best part of this article is the last statement: "And better not give undue place to taste for intellectual innovation..." I strongly believe in : "This is my work and my glory to bring to pass immortality and Eternal life of man". Actually I strongly believe that They, Heavenly Father and our Lord Jesus Christ want for us ALL Their children not "immortality" but ETERNAL LIFE.

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