The Joy of the Saints

The Book of Enos opens like this: “ Behold, I went to hunt beasts in the forests; and the words which I had often heard my father speak concerning eternal life, and the joy of the saints, sunk deep into my heart.” Although Enos never really tells us what this “joy of the saints” might be, it seems to me that the entire story functions as an illustration of John 16:22, a verse in one of the stories in which Jesus explains his upcoming departure to his disciples: And ye now therefore have sorrow: … [Read more...]

Evil Eschatological Mothers

Heh. Back to work, are you? And not really in the mood, perhaps? Yeah. It coulda been Normandy outside last night until quite late. Anyway, here’s a little something to muse on as you ease yourself back into productive behaviors.I think that perhaps the great and abominable church of 1 Nephi 13-14 is the whore of Babylon (Revelation 17), mostly stripped of sexuality and gender. If this is a reasonable reading, it means that the BoM re-visions the great struggle of the end times as a c … [Read more...]

Clean and Press Apologetics

This morning as I was doing a clean and press set the usual happened. At about the tenth repetition of the second set my momentum began to pull me forward, off balance. Now those of you that are familiar with this exercise know that it actually requires momentum, that is, to do it right you want some momentum to get the bar up to shoulder height, and then again to press it overhead. The challenge is in controlling and focusing the momentum so that it boosts your motion at the right time and … [Read more...]

Apologetic Activism — Occupy Your Own Self

So even those of us who live under rocks have now heard that some sort of an Event has occurred out in Utah that apparently involves the potential demise of FARMS. This should be considered bad news by those who think themselves called to defend the Church because it means that the dirty laundry all organizations generate has now risen to such a level that even misanthropically inclined hermits such as me are now aware of it. … [Read more...]

Now Reading… Bad Religion

Published this AM, by Ross Douthout.  Amazing what Kindle can do, no?So the "problem," so far, is the loss the great orthodox Christian center.   And this means heretics, among whom Douthout places us.  He writes: Heretics are often stereotyped as wild mystics, but they're just as likely to be problem solvers and logic choppers, well-intentioned seekers after a more reasonable version of Christianity than orthodoxy supplies.  They tend to see themselves, not irrationally, as rescuers rather … [Read more...]

Safe? Safe?

So, you know, this blog has that stuff about Mormon culture and all up on the masthead, but I don’t usually write much about it.  This probably has to do with a certain snobbishness on my part.  I left Utah at seventeen and haven’t really looked back, so I usually think Mormon culture isn’t.  Then again, I’m not much of a culture person myself, or at least not the culture of the 21st century.  Nevertheless, something has impinged on my cultural awareness, something about BYU from site called “The … [Read more...]

Ironic Unity

Among the many threads of irony that pass through the passion narratives is this story of a second interrogation of Jesus by Herod (Luke 23:7-12): And when [Pilate] learned that [Jesus] was under Herod's jurisdiction, he sent him off to Herod, who was himself in Jerusalem at that time.  When Herod saw Jesus, he was very glad, for he had been wanting to see him for a long time, because he had heard about him and was hoping to see him perform some sign.  He questioned him at some length, but J … [Read more...]

Apologetics Into Doctrine: Romney’s Impact

It appears that Andrew Sullivan published something on Mormons yesterday.  How do I know this without reading Sullivan?  Because there’s a zillion Mormons responding to his comments at sites far removed.  In fact, there’s a bumper crop of Mormon apologetics springing up all over the place and I’m detecting a bit of a common theme.  It is, I think, something of a South Park approach. … [Read more...]