For today’s episode, we were lucky enough to bring back Latter-day Saint philosopher and theologian Adam Miller to talk about his new book, Original Grace. Of the many incredible books we’ve read from Adam, this one, we think, might have the most potential to really change the way we engage God and the world.
We’ll let Adam explain the major theses of the book, but we’ll just say that in many ways it entirely upends traditional understandings of concepts like justice, suffering, mercy, punishment, and, of course — grace. For anyone that has ever felt that they simply aren’t good enough, Adam mines Latter-day Saint scripture and teachings to show that it was never our job to “save ourselves.” As he puts it, “grace-filled partnership with Christ” was the plan all along.
Adam even shares some recent scholarship that shows that one of our faith’s foundational scriptures about grace — “it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do” — has been misread and misunderstood so widely, and for so long, that its original meaning has been almost reversed.
Adam Miller earned a BA in Comparative Literature from Brigham Young University and an MA and PhD in Philosophy from Villanova University. This book, Original Grace, was published by BYU’s Maxwell Institute and Deseret Book. Adam is the author of several others, including some of our favorites like Letters to a Young Mormon and An Early Resurrection.