Faith to Forgive Grievous Harms: Accepting the Atonement as Restitution

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by Nick Galieti

There is a podcast, Mormon Discussion, that I listen to on a regular basis and I feel can offer some good resources for those struggling with a faith crisis. After hearing a talk given by James Rasband @ BYU, I felt–let’s go with inspired, to host an episode offering my commentary on that talk.

From 2004 to 2008, Rasband served as Associate Dean of Academic Affairs the at BYU Law School. Then he took the position as the Associate Academic Vice President for Faculty at BYU. In June 2009 he was named dean of the BYU Law School.

James Rasband is a lawyer, which means that he will approach much of his life in terms of right and wrong, or more specifically, what is legal and unlawful. He will also speak of things in terms of restitution for offenses given. Why I feel that approach is relevant is because, in part, I believe that God operates on laws, and that Jesus Christ often spoke of the role of the atonement with respect to laws. At different times in our lives we feel that we want justice, and other times we want mercy. The beauty of the atonement is that it answers all the demands of both justice and the divine hand of mercy with absolute perfection and totality.

I highly recommend listening or viewing the entire presentation, (and a link to the original talk can be found here) but for the sake of this podcast, I will insert some quotes to help give context to my own commentary.

I am not the type of person who considers gospel talks or devotionals to be life changing experiences most of the time. Instead they tend to add to a sort of pool of gospel knowledge and understanding. So, when I say that this talk by James Rasband made such a significant impact on my outlook in life, contributed tremendously to my understanding of the atonement, and increased my love and appreciation for Jesus Christ as Savior of the World in such a way that I placed it in the category of “life changing talk” I want you to know that for me personally, that is not hyperbole. I hope that doesn’t oversell the message, but I hope that through your experience with my commentary and more so with Brother Rasbands talk, you too, will be able to experience the atonement on a deeper level.

You can listen to the podcast by clicking play on the player below:

In case the player doesn’t work on your browser, click this link to go to the post on Mormon Discussion.

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