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Christian Moral RealismNatural Law, Narrative, Virtue, and the Gospel$
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Rufus Black

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780198270201

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198270201.001.0001

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What makes Christian ethics Christian?

What makes Christian ethics Christian?

(p.115) 3 What makes Christian ethics Christian?
Christian Moral Realism

Rufus Black

Oxford University Press

This chapter elucidates Oliver O'Donovan's central epistemological claim for what makes an ethic Christian. It notes that this epistemological assertion is a two-edged challenge that issues forth from O'Donovan's claim that the resurrection is the pivot to Christian ethics. The chapter emphasizes that it is theological reflection that will ground and shape a Christian's understanding of the realities where a Christian requires an account of the nature of God, creation, humanity, and eschatology — all of which open up an shape the possibilities for human action. It suggests that this integral connectedness between the process of practical reasoning and the theoretical knowledge about reality that forms the foundation of a Christian realist ethic is the defining dimension of moral deliberation as it operates to shape the nature of moral obligation. And the chapter premises, that, if ethics begins with the Gospel, it also ends with the Gospel.

Keywords:   Oliver O'Donovan, epistemological claim, Christian, resurrection, Christian ethics, practical reasoning, theoretical knowledge, reality, Christian realist, Gospel

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