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This Mortal Flesh: Incarnation and Bioethics Paperback – September 1, 2009
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From the Back Cover
We may be entering a golden age in healthcare thanks to dramatic improvements being made in diagnostic procedures and therapies. Many individuals will soon live longer, healthier, and more productive lives. But do these advances also bring the risk of losing one's humanity? Could this progress require the transformation of humans into a new and different species?
In many respects, medicine serves as a surrogate religion in today's societies. Although a proper concern for health is compatible with Christian faith, recent and anticipated advances in extending human longevity are often based on philosophical presuppositions and religious values that are adverse to core Christian beliefs and convictions. In This Mortal Flesh, theologian and ethicist Brent Waters examines the Christian moral life in light of critical bioethical issues, such as biotechnology and physical/cognitive enhancement, reproductive technology, human genetics, embryonic stem cell research, and regenerative medicine. He also examines the "posthuman project," exploring what it means to be human in light of the denial of mortality. Grounding his theological reflections in the doctrine of the incarnation, Waters argues that it is good to be embodied, finite, and mortal.
"This Mortal Flesh represents the distillation of much fine thinking. Brent Waters is concerned less with resolving bioethical dilemmas and more with probing the significance for medicine of the fundamental Christian claim that the Word became flesh. The result is an unusually illuminating display of Christian wisdom concerning technological ambitions that puts in question the meaning of humanity itself."--Robert Song, senior lecturer in Christian ethics, Durham University
About the Author
Brent Waters (D.Phil., University of Oxford) is Jerre and Mary Joy Stead Professor of Christian Social Ethics at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois, where he also directs the Jerre L. and Mary Joy Stead Center for Ethics and Values. He is ordained in the United Church of Christ; has authored, edited, or contributed to many books; and serves on the advisory board of Christian Bioethics.
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The author, however, gives the reader hope in Jesus Christ; he presents a brief theological review at most chapters so that the reader can see the perspective of God on all these matters. Waters provides us with the necessary tools for self-questioning, and walks the reader to a self-understanding of the reality of the self, as an image of God. The author concludes by presenting a future that is promising, yet painful and full of suffering that can be endured if we live under God.
See my full review at[...]