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Faith is By Choice An LDS Faith Blog

Sic Et Non

Daniel Peterson, deviationist and heretic

3 months ago
    Some years ago, I read Ralph Hancock’s translation of Alain Besançon’s A Century of Horrors: Communism, Nazism, and the Horrors of the Shoah.   I believe it was in that book that I encountered this interesting observation:   Nazism, Besançon wrote (if it was indeed Besançon), had a finite goal.  At least in […]
Dan Peterson

A potpourri of Mormoniana

3 months ago
    Today, the incomparable Jeffrey Mark Bradshaw completes two years of service, with his wife, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo Kinshasa Mission.   Thankfully, on top of his responsibilities in Africa, Dr. Bradshaw was able to continue contributing to the work of the Interpreter Foundation, for which he serves as a vice […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 7, in conclusion)

3 months ago
    A conclusion to the story:   A community of Latter-day Saints now exists in the Holy Land. It is not a community of agriculturalists and canal-builders, as our ancestors had pictured, but a community of scholars, teachers, and students. In a very real sense, I believe it fulfills the dreams and aspirations of […]
Dan Peterson

Some news on the religious freedom front

3 months ago
    On Wednesday and Thursday of this week, Brigham Young University’s very significant International Center for Law and Religion Studies (in connection with which I participated in a conference at the law school of the University of Jordan back in April) will be hosting its 2018 Religious Freedom Annual Review:   https://religiousfreedom.byu.edu   The theme […]
Dan Peterson

Egypt in December! (Or, failing that, in May!)

3 months ago
    It has been suggested that I re-post the following, since the available places on the tour are evidently going fast.  And, frankly, the Nile cruise ship that we want to use has limited space; if we don’t claim it, somebody else will.  So, if there is anybody out there who’s thinking about signing […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 6)

3 months ago
    On and on and on it goes . . .   For some time thereafter, no matter how careful we were, some new and usually rather ridiculous charge would still occasionally surface. One amusing instance of this was the accusation published by an Orthodox Jewish newspaper in both Jerusalem and New York during […]
Dan Peterson

A note on 1 Samuel 15

3 months ago
    I taught 1 Samuel 9-17 in my ward’s Gospel Doctrine class today.   Memorable stories.   The account given in 1 Samuel 15 in particular, though, is a very difficult one.  The total annihilation of a people is painful to read about, particularly when the directive to do so is said to have […]
Dan Peterson

On Fatherhood, Chastity, and Traditional Values

3 months ago
    An interesting and calendar-appropriate article in a non-LDS venue by two professors at Brigham Young University:   “Living Into Fatherhood”   ***   The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is commonly mocked for its supposedly outdated and prudish notions of chastity and sexual self-restraint.  Here’s a relevant reflection from Will and […]
Dan Peterson

A thought on one small portion of the theological problem of evil

3 months 1 week ago
    Perhaps the most serious threat to theistic belief is the problem of evil.  If God exists, and if God is both good and all-powerful, evil is difficult to explain.  Again assuming that he exists and that evil exists, God is either not good or he is not all-powerful.  He either cannot prevent evil […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 5)

3 months 1 week ago
    More, regarding the construction of the most visible Latter-day Saint landmark in the Middle East:   On 4 March 1987, occupancy permits were issued for the not­ quite-completed center and, on the recommendation of both the Church’s legal staff and its local lawyers, students and faculty immediately moved into the twenty-million-dollar structure. On […]
Dan Peterson

Four Years Ago, Today

3 months 1 week ago
    As I’ve explained a few times, I maintain a blog for many reasons.   One of them is purely personal:  It’s a kind of journal for me, and, even more particularly, it’s a way of remembering things, and especially of remembering people, whose memory I refuse to allow to be wholly lost.   […]
Dan Peterson

From the Interpreter Foundation

3 months 1 week ago
    We who are associated with the Interpreter Foundation and its weekly publication, Interpreter: A Journal of Mormon Scripture, are pleased to be able to share with a Latter-day Saint audience an important article by Noel Reynolds that first appeared in the Scottish Journal of Theology 68:2 (2015), 218-34:   “The Gospel According to Mormon”   […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 4)

3 months 1 week ago
    Another episode of the continuing story:   Judaism, like Islam, finds a major source of its religious author­ity and practice in the past. But modern values like democracy, equal rights, and religious toleration have come into general accep­tance only since the time in which the fundamental documents of the two religions were composed […]
Dan Peterson

I hope to see you in Las Vegas

3 months 1 week ago
    Several times on this blog I’ve mentioned the annual libertarian extravaganza known as FreedomFest.   I’ve participated in (I think) two or three of these previously, and I’ll be doing so yet again this year.   On Thursday, 12 July, from 1 PM to 1:50 PM, I’ll be debating with Michael Shermer on […]
Dan Peterson

Peterson’s First Rule for the Study of Other Religions

3 months 1 week ago
    Nearly three decades ago now, I spent a summer in Berkeley, California, participating in a small seminar led by the preeminent student of comparative religions Huston Smith (1919-2016) and sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities.   It was an extraordinary and memorable experience on many levels — not the least of […]
Dan Peterson

A train of thought regarding the historicity of the resurrection of Jesus

3 months 1 week ago
    My most recent column for the Deseret News has appeared.  I’ve been busy with other things today, but here’s a link to it:   “11 contributions of the Book of Mormon”   ***   The most recent Old Testament KnoWhy from the Interpreter Foundation is now available:   “How Does the Story of […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 3)

3 months 1 week ago
    A bit more of the story:   As the center came under attack it was clearly the Church itself that was being assaulted. The LDS claim that this was a university building, an academic facility, rather than a mission home or a church, was almost universally brushed aside as a smoke screen. Still, […]
Dan Peterson

“All are alike unto God”

3 months 1 week ago
    Our most significant activity of Wednesday was a visit to the magnificent and still relatively new National Museum of African American History and Culture — the Museum opened on 24 September 2016 — which I recommend very enthusiastically.  It’s entertaining, inspiring, touching, and sobering, by turns.  And the story that it tells positively demands a […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 2)

3 months 1 week ago
    Continuing with the story:   Such attempts at conciliation did not, however, pacify the most militant opponents of the center. Throughout its three years of con­struction, hysterical articles appeared in local newspapers and in the American Jewish press about the Mormon “threat” to Judaism and to the holy city of Jerusalem. (During one […]
Dan Peterson

“Through cloud and sunshine, Lord”

3 months 1 week ago
    I published this column very nearly four years ago.  It was all that I could do.   She was born four years ago today:   Some are displeased with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints over socio-political disputes, gender concerns, and other perceived grievances. While I seldom if ever share their […]
Dan Peterson
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5 hours 46 minutes ago
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