Author Brad Wilcox has a message for those who are sincerely trying to improve themselves — that the atonement of Jesus Christ is not only real, but infinite.
Wilcox, an educator, former mission president and popular youth speaker known for his entertaining but direct style, has dedicated his latest work to those who strive to keep the commandments but who become discouraged in the face of their own imperfection.
"The purpose of this book is to comfort," Wilcox writes in "The Continuous Atonement" (2009 Deseret Book).
Wilcox has sought to capture the magnitude of the Atonement as an eternal and indispensable gift and emphasize that repentance is a continual process. He addresses the paradox that faces a mortal who sins but seeks to enter the presence of God, whom the scriptures say "cannot look upon sin with the least degree of allowance."
"… What chance do any of us have?" Wilcox writes. "The answer is a second chance, a third chance, a fourth chance — as many as we need to get it right."
Wilcox uses the analogy of a young, nervous priest who has to recite the sacrament prayer over and over until he says it correctly. The author then draws in a number of personal experiences from his church service of individuals who have been distraught by their own frailties but subsequently comforted by the power of the Atonement.
Wilcox, who served as a mission president in Chile and is currently a BYU professor and counselor in a stake presidency, does infuse some of his trademark humor into the text but also maintains a reverent, doctrinally rich tone.
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