Ordinary Saints: An Introduction to the Christian Life

Ordinary Saints: An Introduction to the Christian Life

Ordinary Saints: An Introduction to the Christian Life

Ordinary Saints: An Introduction to the Christian Life

Synopsis

Theologian and ethicist Robert Benne addresses the Christian life in its religious and moral dimensions by writing about the vocation of the Christian in daily life. With clarity and authority, he discusses Christian identity, the call of God, moral development, and marriage and family life, among other topics. This fully revised edition includes a study guide for use in classrooms and church study groups.

Excerpt

I wrote the first edition of this book soon after I began teaching Roanoke College students. I thought they needed a straightforward and comprehensive account of the Christian life. This new edition continues that concern for communicating the Christian vision of life to college students, but it does not stop there. I discovered that many church groups and some seminaries used the text for edification and instruction, so I have revised this edition to take account of those groups also.

I learned much about the book’s strengths and weaknesses while I taught it for nearly two decades in college and church classrooms. Its basic framework, I continue to believe, is very useful for articulating the Christian teaching on vocation.That remains in place. But I found that a new edition needed to explore concrete issues more than the original, that it needed to provide questions for discussion attached to each chapter, that some ponderous sections needed to be streamlined, and that some topics—such as the role of the commandments in the Christian life—needed to be clarified.

What seems important for my purposes is not extended attention to the issues dealt with in many texts on Christian ethics—inquiries into the method, scope, and sources of Christian ethics. Neither does it seem appropriate to aim primarily at critical reflection on the inherited tradition, as if that tradition were solidly in place. Finally, it does not seem needful to focus primarily on specific ethical problems or quandaries, as if Christians grappling with them have a full grasp of the theological vision from which such applications flow. All three . . .

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