Brought back memories of filling out the Preach My Gospel Christlike attributes assessment and reaching the humility section. If I rank myself highly, I'm like the guy who says "I am the humblest person I know." But-- if I give myself all zeros, then I'm just doing it to prove I'm humble!
A book with a simple premise, but potentially controversial: Not all of the early apostles and gospel writers viewed Christ the same way. *Gasp!* Don't tell me there were differences of opinion! Say it isn't so!
"Ye have omitted the weightier matters of the law." In less than 70 pages, Bennion beautifully highlights Christ's divine mission and his commandment to love God and neighbor.
What I would give to have a Sunday School lesson taught by Lowell Bennion. Bennion refers to the OT as "the least known and least understood of the standard works of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints", and this is his attempt to help address that. My favorite part: the prophets' insistence on justice for the marginalized: "relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow."
At the height of anti-Muslim sentiment during the Crusades, Saint Francis discovered the divine mystery of universal brotherhood: Islam too was part of God's pleasure. In our post 9/11 world, Saint Francis is an example of inter-religious dialogue that I hope we can all rediscover.
What if the faith of others isn't a challenge to the legitimacy of your own, but an invitation for you to be a better Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, etc? In this wonderful book, Barbara Brown outlines how her faith has changed since stepping down from being an Episcopal priest to teach a world religions course.
Krister Stendahl, the former Lutheran bishop of Stockholm, Sweden performed an act of such grace to Latter-Day Saints during the dedication of the Stockholm temple. I think Latter-Day Saints could learn a lot in our approach to those from other faiths, and I would hope could also find moments of holy envy in our own lives.
Christians cannot give into the temptation to explain suffering away-- as a growth experience, or as punishment for sin, or otherwise. Wolterstorff writes this book while grieving the loss of his son in a tragic climbing accident. His faith in God and his loss-- "I cannot fit these pieces together. I am at a loss." Yet faith remains.
Coming from a Latter-Day Saint perspective, some aspects of Paul may not fit into our cookie-cutter Sunday School version of the gospel, but his vision of a unified church across cultural boundaries is more relevant than ever.