The Protestant doctrine of vocation has had a profound influence on American culture, but in recent years central tenets of this doctrine have come under assault. Vocation: Discerning Our Callings in Life
explores current responses to the classic view of vocation and offers a revised statement and application of this doctrine for contemporary North American Christians.
According to Douglas Schuurman, many Christians today find it both strange and difficult to interpret their social, economic, political, and cultural lives as responses to God's calling. To renew this biblical perspective, Schuurman argues, Christians must recover the language, meaning, and reality of life as vocation
, and his book helps do just that. Developed in dialogue with audiences as diverse as college students, industrial workers, business leaders, church leaders, and professional theologians and ethicists, the book examines the theological and ethical dimensions of vocation as these have been understood historically and in relation to our modern social setting.
Gary D. Badcock
"This is an informed, insightful, and immensely practical study of the concept of vocation. It will be a helpful resource for preachers, students, and people who are answering the question posed by their calling."
Stephen J. Pope
"Douglas Schuurman's Vocation fills a great need both in theological ethics as a discipline and in the life of Christian churches. Schuurman's treatment of 'vocation' is ecumenical, fair-minded, and insightful. He shows an admirable ability both to analyze complex ideas with clarity and depth and to explain their practical relevance to the Christian moral life. His facility with systematic theology is nicely complemented with a profound grasp of the existential importance of the notion of 'calling' for ordinary Christians attempting to make sense of their Christian identity in an increasingly secular world. Vocation: Discerning Our Callings in Life is a model of how to do theological ethics in a way that is both rooted in tradition and highly creative. Schuurman has mastered this topic, and his book will no doubt be regarded as a major reference on this topic for years to come."
Mark U. Edwards Jr.
"Douglas Schuurman promotes vocation as a living, evolving doctrine for North American Christians. While some readers will resist Schuurman's stronger claims, everyone will benefit from his nuanced and compelling study of the uses and abuses of vocation and the moral implications of this traditional doctrine in today's untraditional world."
Douglas F. Ottati
"There are few things that Christians need more urgently to retrieve and rethink today than the idea of calling and vocation. Douglas Schuurman here explores this important theme with insight, sensitivity, and grace. "
"A wise, judicious, and compelling re-articulation of the concept of vocation as an integrative force in the Christian life. Douglas Schuurman's Vocation is filled with sound theological judgment and well-considered counsel."
The Expository Times
"This book presents a timely challenge to (re)discover and practice a theology of vocation such that we many become 'agents through which God's care and love are expressed to the world.'"