BYU professor publishes new book on the Atonement

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BYU religion professor Anthony Sweat holds his newest published book, “Christ in Every Hour”. (Natalie Saunders)

Assistant Professor of Church History and Doctrine at BYU Anthony Sweat recently released his newest book on the Atonement of Jesus Christ, “Christ in Every Hour.”

Sweat’s inspiration for his book stemmed from an experience he had when he was a teenager.

“I remember singing ‘I Need the Every Hour’ and a thought come across my mind: ‘Well, no, I don’t,” Sweat said. “Why do I need the Atonement right now? I need the Atonement when I sin, or when people die, or when I die. Sin and death are the primary reasons.’”

Years later, Sweat decided to write a book answering those questions and providing insight into “why everyone needs the Savior today and right now as a regular person in everyday life.”

So many books have been written about the Atonement of Jesus Christ that someone may wonder what this newest addition may bring to their collection of knowledge.

“When you’re approaching the topic of the Atonement, it’s like love songs; there’s never enough of them. There’s always something enjoyable about a good love song and there always will be,” Sweat said. “I don’t think we can ever learn enough about Christ’s Atonement. The market will never be oversaturated; we should learn all we can about this subject.”

Reader Tara Mabry believes “Christ in Every Hour” is not just another book.

“I often feel like when I read about church topics I say to myself, ‘I’ve read that; I know that or I understand that,’ but Sweat teaches about the Atonement in such a unique way,” Mabry said.

The chapters include:

  1. The Cleansing power of the Savior
  2. The Healing power of the Savior
  3. The Restoring power of the Savior
  4. The Identifying power of the Savior
  5. The Strengthening power of the Savior
  6. The Transforming power of the Savior
  7. The Agent of the Atonement: The Holy Ghost

Every chapter in Sweat’s book explores the different powers of Jesus Christ. Sweat created the chapters in his book to help the readers remember Christ’s powers through an acronym; the first letters of each power spell out the word CHRIST. He hopes that whenever people think of Christ, they not only think of it as a name, but also as a title that tells us how he can help us in that very hour.

“I would hope they would turn to (Christ) not just when tragedy strikes,” Sweat said.

He hopes that people will relate to his book no matter the extremity of their circumstances, sins or weaknesses, and that they will find the need for the Savior on an everyday basis.

Sweat’s readers praise his ability to connect with them on a person level and explain the Atonement in a relatable way.

Brad Wilcox, professor of Ancient Scripture at BYU and author of The Continuous Atonement, wrote an endorsement for Sweat’s book that can be found within the first few pages of the book.

“The book is written in such a way that it will not scare readers away. It is not so thick and academic that readers will say it is beyond their reach; it is within the reach of all who choose to read it,” Wilcox said in addition to his endorsement. “I admire Tony for his willingness (and ability) to write in such an accessible way.”

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