Author: L. Richard Nielsen

Zealot: The Ineffectual Jesus

Biblical studies since the 1930s have found freedom to discover dimensions of the witness of these ancient texts that had not been brought to light by the scholastic epoch’s way of putting the question. Because our age asks questions about power and the social shape of truth, it also finds in canonical documents elements that speak to those questions.  Earlier interpretations did not find such elements, because they did not ask these questions. One particular subcase of this postcritical reorientation is called biblical realism.  This movement has brought about a paradigm shift in Bible reading, so that traditional dualist...

Read More

Condescension: The Call of Discipleship

The Fall is a broad topic and so I have taken an element from it upon which to elaborate my personal understanding, feelings and beliefs. It is the idea of condescension.  This essay is not about what we already know, rather about “Good from Evil” as motivation for fulfilling or acting contrary to the formalities of the Law.  In Christ’s words, “Love your enemies and be ye perfect even as your father which is in heaven is perfect” (Matt. 5:44, 48) and in Lucifer’s, “then ye shall be as gods” (Gen 3:5). Strong’s literal translation of “fall” or “naw-fal,”...

Read More

Ministry: The Belated Lesson of CDR Mormon

Ministry is Christ’s more excellent way to peace. Alma 48 17 Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men. 18 Behold, he was a man like unto Ammon, the son of Mosiah, yea, and even the other sons of Mosiah, yea, and also Alma and his sons, for they were all men of God. 19 Now behold, Helaman and his...

Read More

Retribution: Lessons from the Book of Mormon

In footnote C of Matt. 5:44 the word bless is cross referenced with retribution. In the Bible Dictionary, “punishment” is “righteous retribution” executed for the purpose of extirpating sinners from Israel. This means that “righteous retribution” is punitive and not rehabilitative. To use punishment to “reform” or as a requirement for repentance is unrighteous. “Righteous retribution” is not restitution. The purpose of punishment was neither to restore sinners to good standing in society nor to save them from their sins. Punishment destroys sinners. Does this footnote imply that Christ is advocating His Saints destroy sinners and not save them...

Read More


Join 100 other subscribers