Tag: agency

Literary BMGD #6: Man’s Free Agency

Opposition in All Things by Ben Crowder

One of the fascinating things that happen in Lehi’s fatherly advice to Jacob in 2 Nephi 1 and 2 is that he tries to put together an overall philosophical basis for the gospel. Here the war in Heaven is related to our ability to choose, the fall is related to the atonement, and our choices are related to the very nature of existence, which, Lehi says, requires that there be an “opposition in all things.”

Agency and Atonement

Thanks, Marc for the introduction, and for the opportunity to converse with friends old and new at T & S. Before I annoy (at least some of) you with some political reflections, let me run past you some thoughts on agency and atonement that occurred to me in trying to teach Religion 121 (Book of Mormon Part 1) to BYU students.  I’m not sure I connected with many of themwith these ontological meditations on Second Nephi 2, but I’m hoping somewhere out there in this cyberspace I might find some interested interlocutors.  As I review the question of agency with reference to 2 Nephi 2, I notice three aspects of a rich and distinctive teaching on agency in the Restored Gospel: 1) agency is redeemed 2) agency is bodily & fruitful 3) agency is a principle of reality  1) Agency is Redeemed The Fall is finally good news (22-25) because it opens up the possibility of redemption through the Father’s loving sacrifice of His Son.  The joy that is offered through the Son’s infinite atoning sacrifice is a joy of infinite possibility, the possibility of acting for ourselves and not being acted upon (v. 26) in the meaningful context of eternal life.   In the present mortal probation we exercise our agency most fully by responding to this Sacrifice with our own gift of “a broken heart and contrite spirit” (7), and this free response opens the possibility of freedom on another…