Moral problems are ubiquitous in human life. In this new introductory text for ethics courses, Daniel C. Maguire constructs a complete method to show students how to address the broad range of ethical issues. The method's basic framework is presented graphically as 'the moral wheel', which identifies the central, core questions and the pluriform ways to evaluate responding to them. This survey text includes many features, such as critical thinking boxes, discussion questions, and a glossary, to help students engage more fully with today's moral challenges. (Publisher's website)
"What Is God'sWill for My Life?"
Vocation andDecisions as a Christian
As a young adult, I was troubled by Jeremiah29:11. I knew God knew what was in store for me. I prayed He'd let me in on the secret.
I was tempted to cry out, "Showme a sign!" How well did signs work in Judges6:33-40? Isaiah7? We all face times when we are armed only with God's Word (cf. Matthew4). Begging God for signs was no solution.
So, I began to reflect on God'sWord in the Catechism the Vocations God Gives.
1.Baptized Child of God (Receive the Lord's Gifts)
Exodus20:1-11. Commandments 1-3, especially the First Commandment
Matthew22:37-40.You can't break this commandment to "keep" another.
2.Member of a family: son or daughter, single, husband, or wife, father or mother(care for the family, keep marriage vows, raise children as Christians)
TheFourth Commandment, Sixth Commandment
3.Work (Provide for the Lord's work and priorities as well as the family)
1Chronicles 29:11; 1 John 3:16-18
TheFifth Commandment, 1 Timothy 5:8
4.Everything Else: Leisure, hobbies, community involvement, sports, spectatorsports, and even serving at church (Keep Priorities 1-3 first)
There is often burnoutamong servants of the church when #4 takes over #1.Consider Mary & Martha'spriorities in Luke 10:38-42. Not all church activities are equal. We are given to receive (#1) before we give and serve (#4). Family (#2) is even more important than football (#4).
This is an extensive reconstruction of Dietrich Bonhoeffer's manuscript progress toward a volume on Ethics for Christians. He only left us these manuscripts which modern editors have reconstructed into a logical sequence for today's readers. Bonhoeffer's writing makes up less than 400 pages of this edition.
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Natural Law: A Lutheran Reappraisal presents engaging essays from contemporary Lutheran scholars, teachers, and pastors, each offering a fresh reappraisal of natural law within the context of historic Lutheran teaching and practice. Thought-provoking questions following each essay will help readers apply key Bible texts associated with natural law to their daily lives.
Why the Natural Law Is Necessary No contemporary thinker is interested in a wooden repristination of the natural law that is tied necessarily to the particular metaphysical foundations in the Thomistic–Aristotelian synthesis. The history of natural law shows a wide variety of interpretations and applications. But they all have some elements in common. They all oppose cultural relativism, the notion that laws are mere moral conventions that vary among societies, with no transcendent ontological claim to being universally valid and binding. To the contrary; those who hold to the natural law believe that for a law to be just, it must conform to the structure of reality itself and not depend on the oscillating opinions and preferences of human beings. The law must be the same for all human beings and at all times, so that if murder is morally wrong in America, it is equally so in Asia and Africa. If torture is to be condemned as evil in Jerusalem, it must be equally so in London and Tehran. The United Nations' Declaration of Human Rights formulates rules with respect to freedom and equality that are binding on all nations and peoples, not because of any majority vote, but because of an inherent correspondence between reason and nature. That is what is meant by saying that the Law is "written on the hearts" (Romans 2:25) of all human beings.
Nevertheless, although natural law cannot solve all our problems, it is still worthy of our attention. In our morally confused society, natural law has potential for resolving that confusion for the simple reason that it exists. No matter how corrupt people are or become, they are still confronted with the ought. One cannot understand human nature without understanding this fact. If it is indeed a worthy goal to help those caught up in the current moral conundrum, then we cannot afford to neglect natural law. A struggle exists in the hearts of all mankind. God's law calls us to be holy, yet we are anything but. The natural law can help expose our plight. God's law, revealed in nature and recorded in the infallible Scriptures, still curbs and exposes our sin and points out our need for a Savior. To explain why we struggle and why we transgress what God has commanded, we would do well to begin with what is already known. Only then we can point to God's solution to our struggle and transgression of His law: the person and work of His Son, Jesus Christ" (281).
Read and study this at Winkel, brother pastors!