Our Good Crisis: Overcoming Moral Chaos with the Beatitudes

IVP. Mar. 2020. 192p. ISBN 9780830846009. pap. $16. REL
Could Jesus’s Beatitudes, as the opening section of his Sermon of the Mount, have any relevance to contemporary culture, where moral crises and changing values make it a very complex environment? This is a key question Dodson (Founding Pastor, City Life Church; The Unbelievable Gospel) considers in this latest book. He notes that Christianity is culturally different than it was a few decades ago, which can result in confusion and uncertainty. Dodson believes the Beatitudes can provide a kind of compass for believers by emphasizing key values and encouraging the development of personal virtue. He uses each of Jesus’s eight Beatitudes (Matthew 5:1-12) to address different aspects of Christian character and behavior. Stories and illustrations help Dodson communicate clearly and effectively. Yet, it is evident that he has done significant research on the subject. While other books have been written on this topic, this book is somewhat unique owing to its emphasis on cultural analysis and virtue ethics.
VERDICT A helpful resource for those interested in the Beatitudes and the Sermon on the Mount, as well as Christian ethics.
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