Thursday, 2 December 2010

Commanding Grace: Studies in Karl Barth's Ethics

The quality of recent books on Barth's moral theology, as I have indicated elsehwere with reference to Gerald McKenny's latest offering, is high. As well as McKenny, I have been occupying myself with a new volume of collected essays, edited by Daniel Migliore, entitled Commanding Grace: Studies in Karl Barth's Ethics (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2010). The volume is the published papers of the 2008 Karl Barth Conference, held at Princeton Theological Seminary, USA. I have so far only given light reading to several of the chapters, and must return to them in coming weeks with a more serious eye to the detail of the arguments presented (not least because I'm reviewing it for Theology journal), but thus far I have been enlivened by what I've read and the quality of engagement (positive and negative) with Barth's thought.

The papers are offered by a host of international scholars, from across theological disciplines, both male and female, and are equally varied in their approaches to Barth's moral theology. Standard issues such as interpretation and reception are addressed before the volume moves to consider issues for ethical reflection including war and democracy, justice, economics, and human agency and freedom. The essays are largely paired around these themes. The essays are topped and tailed by helpful contributions from the Editor.

The contributors are: Nigel Biggar; John R Bowlin; Todd V Cioffi; Jesse Couenhoven; Timothy Gorringe; Eric Gregory; David Haddorff; Christopher RJ Holmes; Danile Migliore; Paul T Nimmo; Katherine Sonderegger; Kathryn Tanner; and William Werpehowski.

As time goes by I hope to comment further. For now I'll just encourage you to get a copy and read it if you can.

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