Journal of Lutheran Ethics September 2015 Issue Index: Faith and Justice

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Editor's Introduction

Carmelo Santos

Carmelo Santos,  Interim Editor
[W]hat does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8)

[W]e have come to believe in Jesus Christ, so that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by doing the work of the law” (Galatians 2:16).

The church is at an important juncture in its public life. How will it respond to the cries for justice bubbling up from the various marginalized sectors of our society? ​ Read More​.

Faith and Justice

Dan Lee

Dirty Ethics for Bold Sinning
   by Ted Peters
​In a time of moral ambiguity surrounding discussions of drone warfare, Peters invokes Luther's "Sin Boldly!" to urge people to adopt a "responsibility ethic" that puts the neighbor's needs at the forefront of ethical deliberation. ​In our broken world, can we avoid sin?  No.  Therefore, Peters asks the question--"Should we try?"  For him, the answer is no.  In order to best serve our neighbors, we need to accept that doing our best is better than doing nothing at all.​

 Kirsi Stjerna

Justification and Justice Luther on the Love of the Enemy as Criterion of Justice
    by Vítor Westhelle
What is the relationship of justice and justification for Christians? If pursuing justice is loving one's neighbor, what does that look like?  Feel like?  Should it be visible or felt? Or can that lead to down the road of works righteousness?  Westhelle explores these questions, paying particular consideration to Luther's response to Matthew's story of the Sermon on the Mount.

Kirsi Stjerna  

A Palestinian Feminist Reading of the Book of Jonah​
   by Niveen Sarras                   
How can a story without women speak to women? Sarras explores the circumstance of the prophet Jonah and how his experience can speak to Palestinian women today. ​ She examines the story and language of Jonah's story and compares to the oppression Palestinian Christian women endure today, while suggesting how the church can strengthen these women in their justice work.​​


Book Reviews

From Jeremiad to Jihad

Vainglory: The Forgotten Vice by Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung.
   Review by Michael Trice
Professor Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung’s 2014 book, Vainglory: The Forgotten Vice, builds upon the spirit of her 2009 text, Glittering Vices: A New Look at the Seven Deadly Sins and their Remedies.  An initial take-away in both texts, is that in life, as in driving, a functional relationship exists between our rearview mirror and our windshield.  The past and the present must inform each other.  For DeYoung, looking back at our past contemplative histories (for instance, in the context of spiritual and pastoral advice from early Egyptian ascetic communities, or the Desert Fathers) assists us looking forward to the cause and remedy of the moral and spiritual quandaries we experience today.  

Laura Hartman  

Sin Boldly: Justifying Faith for Fragile and Broken Soul by Ted Peters.
   Review by James Childs

Ted Peters opens up the doctrine of justification by grace for Christ’s sake through faith so that we can see and appreciate how truly radical it is as he unpacks its vitality for our lives and our life in engaging this complex world. The doctrine of justification though familiar is always new and Peters helps us feel that creative energy of living in grace. As the subtitle tells us, Peters wants to speak of justification by faith in terms of “justifying faith.” The term has two meanings which, taken together, alert us to the scope of the book’s discussion. 
Articles published in the journal reflect the perspectives and thoughts of their authors and not necessarily the theological, ethical, or social stances of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.​

© September 2015
Journal of Lutheran Ethics
Volume 15, Issue 8