Restoration or Rebirth : Mormon and American Options of Authenticity
Baker, Jacob T.
Mormonism at the Crossroads of Philosophy and Theology : Essays in Honor of David L. Paulsen
Greg Kofford Books
While I neither want to embarrass our subject nor exaggerate the case, the topic pursued here--authenticity--is one that aptly reflects the man we celebrate. It also pinpoints a significant issue within religious studies that facilitates a partial response to David Paulsen and Cory Walker's extensive critique of my Mormon Culture of Salvation in their article in the FARMS Review of Books. Grateful for their appreciative attention to my work in general, I have decided to respond not to their major criticism of my understanding of grace but to the issue they rasie over my evaluation of spiritual rebirth in Mormonism. In so doing, I focus on patriarchal blessings as a condensation and personalization of key LDS themes that furnish a sense of authenticity that obviates any necessity for Latter-day Saints to engage in born-again language. [From the text]