I was so thrilled to walk into Deseret Book and find a new book by one of my very favorite authors, Adam Miller. I always enjoy his deep-thinking and philosophical writing style, but there was something special about this book. After recently losing his father, Miller combines lessons learned from his dad with what he has found about grace in all of his studies. The author’s premise in Original Grace is that instead of original sin, God gives us original grace. God doesn’t give us what we deserve, God always gives us what we need.

While on his mission, Miller picked up the book Believing Christ by Stephen Robinson. Feeling discouraged, the young missionary found solace in the words of Robinson that reminded him that the Lord is always there, with His hand stretched out, waiting for us to take the grace that He is offering. Robinson points out that words like “deserve” and “earn” do not appear in the Book of Mormon, and that the “all” that we can do is repent. The Lord gives everyone what they need, and as He is a perfectly loving father, we do not need to earn His love. According to Miller, “His grace is absolute.”

The author shows how Heavenly Father loves with examples of love from his earthly father. This was, for me, by far the most impactful part of the book. His father seems like a really great example of love and gratitude, and he was a great teacher. I really enjoyed that the author was able to use his book to pay tribute to his father, and help readers reflect on the love that parents have for their children that is always there. I cannot recommend this enough. If you are going to read an Adam Miller book, let this one be it!

About the Author: Adam S. Miller is a professor of philosophy at Collin College in McKinney, Texas. He earned a BA in comparative literature from Brigham Young University and an MA and PhD in philosophy from Villanova University. He is the author of more than ten books, including Letters to a Young Mormon, An Early Resurrection, and Mormon: A Brief Theological Introduction. He and his wife, Gwen, have three children.

Original Grace: An Experiment in Restoration Thinking by Adam Miller, published by Deseret Book Company, 144 pages, available in ebook and hardcover.

Lauren is from Utah and has been an avid reader her whole life. She graduated from BYU in History and currently teaches elementary school and works at a rare bookstore. She is also a docent at the Church History Museum. Her passions include traveling, spending time with family, learning about history, and of course, reading.