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Christian Ethics and Contemporary Moral Problems Paperback – September 28, 1999

ISBN-13: 978-0521625548 ISBN-10: 0521625548

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Christian Ethics and Contemporary Moral Problems + Christian Ethics, Second Edition: A Historical Introduction + Basic Christian Ethics (Library of Theological Ethics)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (September 28, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521625548
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521625548
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,573,956 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"...this book would serve well as supplementary reading in a practical Christian ethics course..." Journal of Religion

"Michael Banner is an event waiting to happen. He is clearly one of the brightest and most interesting young people doing ethics on the scene today. He is a first-rate theologian who promises to be a new and long-standing voice not only in England but in America. This is a good book and one I believe will be widely read." Stanley Hauerwas, Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics, Duke University

Book Description

This book by Michael Banner explores and attempts to understand the significance of Christian belief for a range of contemporary and controversial ethical issues including euthanasia, the environment, biotechnology, abortion, the family, sexual ethics, and the distribution of scare resources for health care. Its importance lies in its attempt to show the crucial difference which Christian belief makes to an understanding of these issues, whilst at the same time demonstrating some of the weaknesses and confusions of certain popular approaches to them.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Joshua V. Schneider VINE VOICE on November 4, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a very difficult book to review. Based on the first three chapters only, I would have been happy to give it 5 stars. I don't think that some of the endorsements overstate Banner's strong handle on these issues. He has a rather unique position on how Christian ethics should be done, and gives a pretty convincing explanation in the first chapter on dogmatic Christian ethics. The next two chapters, on Christian anthropology at the beginning and end of life, and a critique of the practice of abortion are strongly-reasoned and well worth reading. His analysis is incisive and cuts through the evasions of those whom he critiques.

However, I found myself increasingly disappointed with the rest of the book. Banner is so meticulously thorough in seeing and evaluating almost every angle of various issues, that the reading becomes very tedious. The writing is very verbose and often has ridiculously long sentences with multiple conditional clauses. He is exceedingly cautious not to be misunderstood. Even the careful reader is likely to get bogged down. I did not find the remaining chapters as crisp or interesting as the first three, yet I'm glad to have the book in my library, especially for some of the arguments he makes against abortion. In my opinion, the book spent too much time trying to analyze and unwind all the opposing viewpoints without spending enough time giving a positive statement of the Christian ethic. Yet where Banner does, it is certainly worth paying attention to, and it is clear that the Gospel of Jesus Christ drives his ethic.
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