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Why Bother Being Good?: The Place of God in the Moral Life Paperback – May, 2002

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Hare (Calvin Coll.; The Moral Gap) has written an apologetic for Christian morality, arguing that a theological background is necessary for morality in general to make sense. He further asserts that we need "moral" faith and that, through Christ's work in atonement, justification, and sanctification, we can be transformed and happy without compromising the attempt to be morally good. Though the book is intended for a general audience, it is not always clear whom Hare is addressing. He makes too many assumptions, some of which are either not germane to Christians or are unacceptable to others. For example, he assumes a universal morality in the Ten Commandments and in the great commandment to love God and neighbor, but he also argues from Kant, whose "practical reason" is considered to be empty hope by some Christian philosophers and inconsistent with historical and revealed Christian beliefs. In addition, while the book is well organized, it is poorly written, and the examples Hare offers don't always work. Not recommended. George Westerlund, Palmyra, VA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

John E. Hare is Noah Porter Professor of Philosophical Theology at Yale University. His books include "The Moral Gap" (1996), "God's Call" (2001), and "Why Bother Being Good? "(2002). He has also written on Greek philosophy, international relations, Kant, evolutionary ethics, and biomedical ethics. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press (May 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830826831
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830826834
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,756,435 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
I don't agree that Hare in this book offered many doubtful assumptions. I am a foreigner myself and yet I don't feel any estrangement when I read his book (of course, I am a Christian). During my reading, I accept many of his assumptions and examples as being fitted with Christian common sense. His intention to write to general audience must also be understood in the light of his identity as a Christian thinker. I don't think that in writing a book to a general audience, a Christian writer must abandon many specific Christian jargons. That's not necessary at all. Besides, the notion that Kant's practical reason is empty must be considered again in the light of the most recent Kantian scholarship and close textual analysis. I believe that some prominent Kant's scholars like Onora O'Neill, Christine Korsgaard, and Felicitas MUnzel will not necessarily accept the accusation of the emptiness of Kantian ethics. Recently, a dynamically growing body of Kantian scholarship (not necessarily Christian) argues otherwise and recognizes the importance of Kant's religious belief in his entire system. I feel that this book must be read and thaught. You may also read it together with Hare's God's Call (or Moral Gap, if you want a more serious study).
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Clearly written, accessible, and inspiring!
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