Alma 1–29

a brief theological introduction

. . . that there might not be more sorrow upon all the face of the earth.

Alma is an idolatrous man—until an angel’s rebuke leads to repentance and two decades of righteous service in realms both political and religious. But Alma’s past haunts him. He abdicates political power in order to focus more fully on his ministry. When war against Nephite dissenters shatters the community, he laments.

In this brief theological introduction to the first twenty-nine chapters of the book of Alma, literary scholar Kylie Nielson Turley considers how Alma’s profound transformation from anti-Christ to high priest of the church of God can deepen our understanding of Christ’s mercy. What if God forgives and forgets but humans do not? Does following God ensure a less painful life? Is it faithless to mourn, question, or cry out when beset by sin, violence, or death?

Turley foregrounds Alma as a man who sinned grievously and who was grievously sinned against, a man who found hope and healing in the darkest abyss, a man whose words offer hope and healing to a burdened world.

mi.byu.edu/brief

About the Author

Kylie Nielson Turley

Kylie Nielson Turley has taught writing, rhetoric, and literature classes since 1997 at Brigham Young University, where she emphasizes a literary approach to the Book of Mormon in her Literature of the LDS People course. She has published articles on Alma, LDS “home literature” fiction and poetry, and Utah and LDS women’s history. She is also the author of numerous personal essays.

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Publication Information

  • Publication Date: 2020
  • ISBN 13: 978-0-8425-0024-1
  • Page Count:
  • Illustration(s):
  • Binding: paperback, epub
  • Price: $ 9.95
  • Imprint: Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship

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The views expressed here and in Maxwell Institute publications are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Maxwell Institute, Brigham Young University, or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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