Each year, Brigham Young University Religious Education professors produce hundreds of publications on subjects related to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This podcast brings this research into one place to enlighten the everyday seeker of truth. Interviewing the author, we discuss why the study was done, why it matters, and why the professor chooses to be both a scholar, and a disciple. This is Y Religion.
We can sometimes think that Joseph Smith’s understanding of key Restoration doctrines came fully formed from the start. But the reality is that many concepts were revealed more slowly, here a little and there a little. Beginning with the tragic death of Joseph’s brother Alvin up through temple ordinances in Nauvoo, BYU religion’s Michael Goodman and Devan Jensen discuss how the Prophet grew in his understanding of doctrines related to the eternal family, and how God works with all of us line upon line.
“‘Line upon Line’: Joseph Smith’s Growing Understanding of the Eternal Family” (The Religious Educator, 2019)
While existing artwork that portrays the Restoration is rich and beautiful, until now many key events in early Latter-day Saint history have not been depicted. In this episode, Anthony Sweat discusses his work to paint and write about 25 of these events, including 19th century female healing blessings, the early ordination of Black men like Q. Walker Lewis, the first baptism for the dead, and many others, illustrating why expanding our visual imagery can expand our understanding of the Restoration.
Repicturing the Restoration (Religious Studies Center/Deseret Book, 2020)
Click here to learn more about professor Anthony Sweat
One of the primary figures in establishing the trajectory of early Christian theology was Paul. Or should we still call him Saul? Was he an apostle (missionary) or Apostle (quorum)? Is the conversion narrative of rebel to saint an accurate representation of his zealous soul? In this episode, Dr. Nick Frederick challenges some of our existing assumptions about Paul while inviting us to better understand why his life and teachings are essential to Christianity, both anciently and today.
“The Life of the Apostle Paul: An Overview” in New Testament History, Culture, and Society: A Background to the Texts of the New Testament (Religious Studies Center, 2019)
Click here to learn more about professor Nick Frederick
You may not know about Rose Marie Reid. After this episode, you’ll know why you should. In the 1950s she not only revolutionized women’s swimwear and established a multi-million dollar industry, but she also counseled with apostles about how to improve missionary work and establish relationships between Jewish and Latter-day Saint faiths, influencing interfaith dialogue today. Dr. Andrew Reed discusses the impact of this remarkable woman who built a family, built a business, and built the Kingdom of God.
Rose Marie Reid, LeGrand Richards, and ‘The Plan for Teaching the Gospel to Jewish People’ (Mormon Historical Studies).
Click here to see an online exhibit from BYU’s Library of Rose Marie Reid’s life and work.
Click here to learn more about professor Andrew Reed
While most of us encounter the text of the New Testament in English as it was interpreted by the King James translators, it was originally written in Greek. In this insightful episode, Dr. Lincoln Blumell takes us into the Greek world of the New Testament and its historical texts and times. He gives listeners some fascinating insights to passages and ideas from the New Testament, showing why a little contextual knowledge can have big doctrinal implications.
New Testament History, Culture, and Society: A Background to the Texts of the New Testament (Religious Studies Center, 2019)
Click here to learn more about professor Lincoln Blumell
The Book of Mormon is often read chronologically, historically, or doctrinally. But have you ever considered studying it theologically? That’s what a group of scholars at the Neal A. Maxwell Institute at BYU are doing, with wonderful results. In this episode, one of the authors and editors of The Book of Mormon: Brief Theological Introductions series, Dr. Joseph Spencer, discusses what theology is and why it can be a powerful approach to studying scripture.
1st Nephi: A Brief Theological Introduction (Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship, 2020)
Click here under “Learn More/Podcast Interviews” to listen to the Maxwell Institute’s podcasts on this series.
Click here to learn more about professor Joseph Spencer
From the early days of the Restoration, Latter-day Saints learned firsthand that politics could impact the practice of their faith. Frustrated with politicians, in 1844 Joseph Smith launched his own U.S. Presidency campaign. Many don’t know that Joseph ran for President, or why. In this episode, Dr. Derek Sainsbury shares insights from his groundbreaking publication on Joseph Smith’s campaign, helping us understand why appropriate participation in politics is often related to building the kingdom of God.
Storming the Nation: The Unknown Contributions of Joseph Smith’s Political Missionaries (Religious Studies Center/Deseret book, 2020)
See more at www.stormingthenation.com
Click here to read General Smith’s Views of the Powers and Policy of the Government of the United States
In the summer of 1838, Missouri Latter-day Saints drew a line. Following several years of persecution, they chose to take up arms to defend themselves and their religious liberties. An oath-bound paramilitary society, known as the “Danites,” formed to warn out undesirable people from their community and defend the Church and its leaders. In this episode, Alex Baugh shares insights from his research that gives valuable context to why the Danites organized, and lessons learned from their actions.
“‘We have a Company of Danites in these Times’: The Danites, Joseph Smith, and the 1838 Missouri-Mormon Conflict” (Journal of Mormon History, vol. 45, no. 3, 2019).
Click here to learn more about Professor Alex Baugh.
Most Latter-day Saints are familiar with the First Vision account in Joseph Smith-History. Many, however, are not as familiar with the numerous other contemporary sources of the event. In this episode, Dr. Kerry Muhlestein discusses powerful insights from his publication, I Saw the Lord, harmonizing nine historical accounts of the First Vision. When we study the available accounts collectively, fascinating new perspectives can be gained from this foundational event that otherwise may be missed.
I Saw the Lord (Deseret Book, 2020)
Click here to read each of the nine contemporary First Vision sources
In 1939, Adolf Hitler’s army invaded Czechoslovakia. Although the Church was fragile in the area, the saints were strengthened by a man who is known today as the Moses of the Czech Republic. In this episode, Professor Mary Jane Woodger shares insights from her book, Mission President or Spy, The True Story of Wallace F. Toronto, the Czech Mission, and World War II, showing how faith can survive in challenging circumstances through the influence of fearless and faithful saints.
Mission President or Spy, The True Story of Wallace F. Toronto, the Czech Mission, and World War II (Religious Studies Center/Deseret Book, 2019).
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