Self, World, and Time
takes up the question of the form and matter of Christian ethics as an intellectual discipline. What is it about? How does Christian ethics relate to the humanities, especially philosophy, theology, and behavioral studies? How does its shape correspond to the shape of practical reason? In what way does it participate in the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ?
Oliver O'Donovan discusses ethics with self, world, and time as foundation poles of moral reasoning, and with faith, love, and hope as the virtues anchoring the moral life. Blending biblical, historico-theological, and contemporary ideas in its comprehensive survey, Self, World, and Time
is an exploratory study that adds significantly to O'Donovan's previous theoretical reflections on Christian ethics.
Read an excerpt from the book
-- Duke Divinity School
"Writing with a clarity that comes from a lifetime of reflection, Oliver O'Donovan here gives us an account of practical reason that shows why and how ethics is at the beginning, middle, and end of a theological work. I suspect this book is destined to become a classic because few authors are as capable as O'Donovan in combining wisdom and erudition. We are in his debt."
-- University of Virginia
"In this volume O'Donovan challenges how we do ethics, and what we say of ethics, across the board, from alpha to omega. The book is brief but elegant, erudite, judicious, its proposals matured by decades of reflection on what ethics can and cannot do. Its poetically dense, richly thought-provoking style invites one to leisurely reflection. After reading the first paragraph I was intrigued; halfway through the second I was hooked. You will be too: taste and see."
-- University of Nottingham
"In this splendidly dense yet lucid first volume of his new project, Oliver O'Donovan richly succeeds in re-connecting a neo-orthodox stress upon dogma with an earlier pietist stress upon personal formation. We are thereby inducted into a stance where vision and commitment, belief and action become fully inseparable. O'Donovan realizes that such an integral theology is what responsibility requires of us in the face of a double threat to our planet and to our humanity."
-- Clare Hall, Cambridge
"The achievement of Self, World, and Time lies, to my mind, in its much welcome purism: it is bright theology and moral theology, and moral theology as biblical theology. The well-known sin of moral theology, since the Latin Middle Ages, has been its philosophical proclivities. . . . O'Donovan has written one more contribution to a non-philosophical theological ethics. This may be his best contribution to it. In any case, it is a splendid book."