Evil and Christian Ethics
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Genocide in Rwanda, multiple murder at Denver or Dunblane, the gruesome activities of serial killers - what makes these great evils, and why do they occur? In addressing such questions this book, unusually, interconnects contemporary moral philosophy with work in New Testament scholarship. The conclusions to emerge are surprising. Gordon Graham argues that the inability of modernist thought to account satisfactorily for evil and its occurrence should not lead us to embrace an eclectic postmodernism, but to take seriously some unfashionable pre-modern conceptions - Satan, demonic possession, spiritual powers, cosmic battles. Precisely because it strives to observe the high standards of clarity and rigour that are the hallmarks of philosophy in the analytical tradition, the book makes a powerful case for the rejection of humanism and naturalism, and for explaining the moral obligation to struggle against evil by reference to the New Testament's cosmic narrative.
'... a sensitive, creative and beautifully written account of Augustine ... Matthewes presents an account of evil that is in part metaphysical (supra-personal), but conceived more as energy than substance ... this brilliant, engaging and provocative book deserves a wide readership ... it will bring people to Augustine - and thereby to their own situation - afresh ...'. Church Times '... the book is a major addition to the discussion of all the issues with which it concerns itself. It is also, as always with Graham's work, very well written.' Conversations in Religion and Theology