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Understanding Religious Ethics

April 2010, ©2010, Wiley-Blackwell
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This accessible introduction to religious ethics focuses on the major forms of moral reasoning encompassing the three ‘Abrahamic’ religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

  • Draws on a range of moral issues, such as examples arising from friendship, marriage, homosexuality, lying, forgiveness and its limits, the death penalty, the environment, warfare, and the meaning of work, career, and vocation
  • Looks at both ethical reasoning and importantly, how that reasoning reveals insights into a religious tradition
  • Investigates the resources available to address common problems confronting Abrahamic faiths, and how each faith explains and defends its moral viewpoints
  • Offering concrete topics for interfaith discussions, this is a timely and insightful introduction to a fast-growing field of interest
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Acknowledgments.

Introduction: Conviction and Argument.

Part I: Preliminaries.

1 God and Morality.

2 Jewish Ethics.

3 Christian Ethics.

4 Islamic Ethics.

Part II: Personal Matters.

5 Friendship.

6 Sexuality.

7 Marriage and Family.

8 Lying.

9 Forgiveness.

Part III: Social Matters.

10 Love and Justice.

11 Duty, Law, Conscience.

12 Capital Punishment.

13 War (I): Towards War.

14 War (II): In War.

15 Religion and the Environment.

Part IV: The Last Things.

16 Pursuits of Happiness: Labor, Leisure, and Life.

17 Good and Evil.

Conclusion: What's So Funny ’bout Peace, Love, and Understanding?

Notes.

Index.

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Charles Mathewes is Associate Professor of Religious Ethics at the University of Virginia. He is the author of Evil and the Augustinian Tradition (2001), A Theology of Public Life (2007), and several edited volumes.
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  • Introduces religious ethics by focusing on the major forms of moral reasoning encompassing the three ‘Abrahamic’ religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
  • Looks at both ethical reasoning and importantly, how that reasoning reveals insights into a religious tradition
  • Draws on a range of moral issues, such as examples arising from friendship, marriage, homosexuality, lying, forgiveness and its limits, the death penalty, the environment, warfare, and the meaning of work, career, and vocation
  • Investigates the resources available to address common problems confronting Abrahamic faiths, and how each faith explains and defends its moral viewpoints
  • Offering concrete topics for interfaith discussions, this is a timely and insightful introduction to a fast-growing field of interest
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“At 250 pages, the volume provides thoughtful theoretical foundations for comparative religious ethics balanced by attention to both historical context and normative issues.”  (Religious Studies Review, 11 June 2013)  

"This splendid volume—from a distinguished scholar and teacher—is the best available general introduction to comparative religious ethics. Unlike many arid textbooks, it offers a lively examination of the moral life by initiating readers into the diverse beliefs and practices that animate Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Adherents of these traditions and their critics will find much wisdom in these pages. The serious treatment of classical questions and contemporary problems is a needed antidote to many lazy discussions of controversial issues."
Eric Gregory, Princeton University

"Comparative, comprehensive and highly readable, Matthewes' book provides an overview of religious ethics in three traditions without sacrificing the specificity of each ethical system. The author effortlessly enlightens the reader as to how Judaism, Christianity and Islam deals with highly relevant topics such as family, love, sexuality, lying, war, capital punishment and many more themes in a provocative and graceful manner."
Ebrahim Moosa, Duke University

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Wiley E-Text   
Understanding Religious Ethics
ISBN : 978-1-4443-2610-9
288 pages
June 2011
$33.00   BUY

Paperback   
Understanding Religious Ethics
ISBN : 978-1-4051-3352-4
280 pages
April 2010, ©2010
$44.95   BUY

Hardcover   
Understanding Religious Ethics
ISBN : 978-1-4051-3351-7
280 pages
December 2010
$119.95   BUY

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