In his wide-ranging and engaging collection of interviews, Brian Brock discusses how Christian faith makes a difference to life in the modern world. Beginning with a discussion of teaching Christian ethics in the contemporary academy, Brock takes up environmental questions, political and medical ethics, the modern city and Christian responsibility for it, energy use, the information age, agriculture, political consensus and coercion, and many other issues. The reader is thus offered a broad and incisive discussion of many contemporary topics in a brief, illuminating, but never superficial manner. The unusual conversational style of the book allows strikingly clear, creative and concrete theological connections to emerge in the spaces between moral questions rarely thought of as linked. As the title suggests, the running theme of the interviews is being bound to Christ and placed into the contemporary world. Brock’s theological readings of contemporary cultural trends are vigorous, unapologetic and insightful, and they offer delightful surprises as well as fertile new ways through the sterile impasses of many issues currently being debated in the public square.
Captive to Christ, Open to the World provides an accessible introduction to Brock’s previous works and an excellent starting point for those interested in fresh theological insights into contemporary ethical questions.
About the Author
Brian Brock is Reader in Moral and Practical Theology at the University of Aberdeen. He is the author of Singing the Ethos of God: On the Place of Christian Ethics in Scripture (2007) and Christian Ethics in a Technological Age (2010), and co-editor of Theology, Disability and the New Genetics: Why Science Needs the Church (2007) and Disability in the Christian Tradition: A Reader (2012) with John Swinton.
Kenneth Oakes is currently a Postdoctoral Scholar at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, and was previously a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Tübingen in Germany. He is the author of Karl Barth on Theology and Philosophy (2012) and Reading Karl Barth: A Companion to the Epistle to the Romans (2011). His articles and reviews have appeared in journals such as Modern Theology, International Journal of Systematic Theology and The Thomist.
Introduction by Kenneth Oakes
1. Scripture, Modernity, Doxology
2. Technology, Precursors, Resistance
3. Environmentalism, Teaching Theology, Nationalism
4. Energy, Mobility, Economy
5. Intentional Community, Good Works, Listening and Responding
6. Higher Education, City Planning, Heaven and Earth
7. Medicine, Daily Bread, Politics, and Violence
8. Theology in the University, Manicheans Today, Realist Christianity
Endorsements and Reviews
What a joy it is to sit in on a conversation with someone who ‘grew up in a little Bible church in an industrial backwater in Texas’ and who now calls an ancient Scottish university his home. Brian expresses a great delight employing his profound Christian faith to engage the world. Anyone who reads this book is in for a great delight.
John Nagle, University of Notre Dame, Indiana
Brian Brock ranges far and wide, and touches on a whole set of important questions …
Duncan Dormor, in Church Times, 29 January 2016