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Bridging the Divide: The Continuing Conversation between a Mormon and an Evangelical Paperback – November 13, 2007

3.8 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dr. Robert L.Millet has been on the Religion faculty at Brigham Young University since 1983 and is now a Professor of Religious Education, Outreach, and Interfaith Relations. He was Dean of Religious Education for ten years. He has published more than 50 books including Different Jesus? The Christ of the Latter-Day Saints and Grace Works.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Monkfish Book Publishing (November 13, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0976684365
  • ISBN-13: 978-0976684367
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #693,623 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I found this very informative and insightful. Subjective, personal beliefs aside, there simply is no basis to the ranting, the bickering and the arguing over who owns "Jesus" or who's Jesus is the correct and "biblical" Jesus and who's Jesus is not "biblical."

As a student of comparative religions (and the Bible), this is the best book I have read in quite some time on the subject. I have always been curiously intrigued by the theology of Mormon Christians (i.e., Latter-day Saints) and how their beliefs compare (or differ) from what is often termed "traditionalProtestant or Catholic Christianity" -- though I will state that the term "traditional" is misleading to anyone who is a serious scholar of Christian history. However, despite my best efforts at research, I find that I am often at a loss to find an objective discussion, publication, or analysis on the comparative theology of Mormon Chrisitaity. I finally had to resort to purchasing the LDS book, "Jesus the Christ," which answered many of my questions on this topic and which I would also recommend to any serious student of Mormon Christianity.

Unlike other comparative publications on this topic by Evangelicals or by Mormon Christians, the authors of this book remained entirely objective and respectful in their discussions. Dare I say that a deep and profound respect and mutual admiration for each other could be felt in its pages? Dare I say that the authors, two highly educated religion scholars, showed an example of how to find common ground? Dare I say to the Evangelical Christian and the Mormon Christian communities that this is how dialogue should occur? Dare I say that this behavior is exactly what Christ himself would want? I wholly enjoyed reading this book. I will be picking up the other book written by these authors so to continue my reading of their respectful and enlightening conversations.
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I shared this book with my mother after reading it. She is an Evangelical Christian and I am a convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints of 13 years. My mom and I both share a love and devotion to Jesus Christ and a desire to pattern our lives after His. We both love and revere the word of God. I just happen to have a testimony of something that she does not; namely, that God continues to speak through a Prophet in modern times as he did in ancient times. Our conceptions of Deity also differ. Hers is based on the conception hammered out at the Council of Nicaea convened by the Roman Emperor Constantine I in AD 325. Mine is based on the experience of a humble, 14 year old boy who read James chapter 1:5 and was inspired to find a quiet place where he could kneel and appeal to God directly through prayer for an answer.

Are there differences in the doctrines we accept? Absolutely. However, my mother and I have learned that while we may disagree about this doctrine or that, we can acknowledge the vital, central force for good that Jesus Christ has been and remains in our lives. For now we avoiding contentious discussions and focus instead on things that we both agree on, among them, that "ye shall know them by their fruits," not by their denominations. This book serves as a role model for effective interfaith dialogue and I commend its authors for their courage in addressing differences in such an honest, open, and respectful manner. On the road to greater Christian unity, it seems to me that Bridging the Divide is something that can only occur when both Evangelicals and Latter-day Saints take the proverbial "high road," as these two men have.
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As much as I enjoyed How Wide the Divide, this book offers even more useful information.

1) The fact that these men, high-respected in their respective traditions, can be friends despite their differences reassures me that my own experiences as a rank-and-file believer with others at the same level are not isolated. That they can remain friends after it is clear that neither is going to convert the other gives confidence that there can indeed be Christ-like love between these two camps.

2) The fact that this pair of speakers can attract a mostly respectful audience wherever they go suggests that rank-and-file believers want to build these friendships.

3) Members of these two traditions have a history of hurting each other with ill-chosen words; this book does a good job identifying words we both use, but with different meanings, that lead to the conclusion that the 'other' is lying to us.

Having finished the book, I have begun circulating my copy around my congregation's outreach leaders so that they may also be enlightened by it.

Lance ==)-------------
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Format: Paperback
Very thoughtful and productive book. Though listing both Mormon and Evangelical contributors as co-authors, it definitely appears slanted a bit more to an evangelical audience. I don't state this to be critical, as frankly, though a Mormon myself, I have no problem with that undertone existing. But it does tinge the after-affect, with a slightly more pro-evangelical tilt than a truly bi-partisan approach would have achieved. For example, near the end Reverend Johnson states 5 "principles" which, given he is their author, take a somewhat paternalistic approach to tolerance, as if the unspoken assumption is that his evangelical position is of course the "true" one, yet gracious enough to be tolerant of the "less" true Mormon position. I found that slightly condescending, which is the main reason I marked the book down 1 star. Obviously, Bob Millet, the Mormon theologian could have pronounced the exact same 5 principles, from the position of magnanamous toleration for the evangelical theology. At the end, it felt a bit more like this was Reverend Johnson's book, with Bob Millet as the interviewee. Not a major problem, but left me feeling a bit unsatisfied as I felt a little patted-on-the-head. This was true of the end of the book, but not true of the middle book, where just true open conversation was made with no attempt to monopolize the dialog by either side.

Other than that, this book does what few others even attempt. (With the exception of the Stephen Robinson/Craig Blomberg book "How Wide the Divide".) An unheated, mature, and rationale discussion of two great religious traditions, sans rancor or entrenched one-ups-manship.
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