I wrote the cover story for the August online Today’s Officer magazine — an article about the pros and cons of online education.  Check it out here!

Publication dates!

Zondervan tells me that they will release The Mormon Mirage, Third Edition:  A Former Mormon Looks at the Church Today in April, 2009.  April 1, 2009 is the publication date for The Latter-day Cipher, my first novel which will be published by Moody. I can’t believe it — I am a novelist. Some upcoming speaking dates:  November 2008 (tentative):  Canyon, TX; February 2009: Salado, TX; September 2009:  West Yellowstone, Wyoming.  If you’re in the area of any of these, I would be pleased to see you.

Does God Change His Mind?

Our Bible study small group has struggled with the sense that God changed His mind in various situations in the Old Testament.  Here is the way I have tried to resolve the issue: DOES GOD CHANGE HIS MIND? Exodus 32:14, in speaking of how God did not bring about disaster to the people of Israel says that He “changed His mind” (NAS).  The King James Version says He “repented,” while the NIV says He “relented.” A similar situation is found in Isaiah 38 (parallel passage found in 2 Kings 20) where God announced through Isaiah that Hezekiah”‘s illness was fatal, but after the king prayed and wept God had Isaiah announce that he would live 15 years longer. What happened?  Did God lie?   Did He change His mind? I...

Sermons, Parables, and Book Ideas

Dan and I have an unusual situation — our minister Alan Taylor has been our preacher for 23 years.  His sermons are consistently high quality and Bible based.  Old-timers and visitors alike comment on his sermons. I always get something out of his sermons for one of two reasons.  First, I often pray that the Lord will move his mind to preach on something I need that very day.  (If others want the same, the Lord can provide personalized instruction for them, too — sermons can meet the diverse needs of many.)  Secondly, I believe the function of a sermon can be parabolic, that is, it can function like a parable.  When Jesus told parables, he took an image or situation (like yeast) and “threw it alongside” (the literal  meaning of...

New Book Title

One of the challenges of the upcoming publication of my first book on Mormonism has been settling on a title that reflects both its history (it stayed in print almost 20 years through multiple printings) and its new research.  Here is what Zondervan has said about it, and the tentative new title: Your book”‘s long-standing is very important. We would like to include “Third Edition” in the main title, so this stands out on Amazon, CBD, and in databases where the book is listed for retailers. It will help further distinguish it from other books. It does not need to be rendered so closely to the title on the cover, however. Regarding a subtitle, we wanted to emphasize not just the personal aspect of the book and your story, but also the...