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The Betrayal of Charity: The Sins That Sabotage Divine Love
     

The Betrayal of Charity: The Sins That Sabotage Divine Love

by Matthew Levering
 

Love was at one time a powerfully unifying force among Christians. In his letters, Paul consistently evokes charity as the avenue to both human and divine communion. If the magnitude of charity was of the upmost importance to early Christians, so were those sins that aimed to distract Christians from acting based on love. Taking seriously the efforts of Paul, and

Overview

Love was at one time a powerfully unifying force among Christians. In his letters, Paul consistently evokes charity as the avenue to both human and divine communion. If the magnitude of charity was of the upmost importance to early Christians, so were those sins that aimed to distract Christians from acting based on love. Taking seriously the efforts of Paul, and later Thomas Aquinas, to expose and root out the sins against charity, Matthew Levering reclaims the centrality of love for moral, and in fact all, theology.

As Levering argues, the practice of charity leads to inner joy and peace as well as outward mercy, good will, and unity with God and neighbor. The sins against charity—hatred, sloth, envy, discord and contention, schism, war and strife, and sedition and scandal—threaten love's concrete effects by rebelling against dependence on God and undermining interdependence on others. The Betrayal of Charity seriously considers the consequences of each of the sins against love, compelling individuals and communities to recognize their own loss of charity. In doing so, Levering fosters a spirit of restoration and reminds readers that love—not the sins against it—will have the last word.

Baylor University Press

Editorial Reviews

The Thomist - Perry J. Cahall

The Betrayal of Charity: The Sins That Sabotage Divine Love is a piece of scholarship that is unique and creative in its approach and well worth reading. It offers the reader an engaging, scholarly treatment of sins against love and how these sins relate to current issues.

The Christian Century

Levering demonstrates that 'contemplating charity in light of its opposites' will deepen our understanding of the primary theological virtue. This work of moral theology takes scripture and Thomas Aquinas as chief sources for insightful reflections on hatred, sloth, envy, discord, schism, violence and scandal. Levering's brilliance lies in clearing away the sins that sabotage divine love through critical readings of Christianity's critics.

From the Publisher

"Levering is by now at the forefront of the younger generation of Catholic theologians in America. The Betrayal of Charity provides a profound treatment of particular patterns of sin together with a proper placement of those patterns within the grammar of love. A lovely and intellectually stimulating book."

--Paul J. Griffiths, Warren Chair of Catholic Theology, Duke Divinity School

"Levering's account of love brings Aquinas' moral theology alive for contemporary readers. The Betrayal of Charity sets up a rich dialogue with the biblical texts, as well as Jewish, Protestant, and secular accounts of the virtues and the vices that contradict them."

--Brian Brock, Lecturer in Moral Practical Theology, University of Aberdeen and author of Christian Ethics in a Technological Age

"The Betrayal of Charity is spirited and engaging. Levering addresses very worthy interlocutors--including Hays and Schwartz--and gives them a good run for their money."

--Gary Anderson, Professor of Old Testament/Hebrew Bible, University of Notre Dame

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781602583566
Publisher:
Baylor University Press
Publication date:
08/01/2011
Pages:
229
Sales rank:
1,103,308
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are Saying About This

Gary Anderson

The Betrayal of Charity is spirited and engaging. Levering addresses very worthy interlocutors—including Hays and Schwartz—and gives them a good run for their money.

Paul J. Griffiths

Levering is by now at the forefront of the younger generation of Catholic theologians in America. The Betrayal of Charity provides a profound treatment of particular patterns of sin together with a proper placement of those patterns within the grammar of love. A lovely and intellectually stimulating book.

Brian Brock

Levering's account of love brings Aquinas' moral theology alive for contemporary readers. The Betrayal of Charity sets up a rich dialogue with the biblical texts, as well as Jewish, Protestant, and secular accounts of the virtues and the vices that contradict them.

Meet the Author

Matthew Levering is Perry Family Foundation Chair of Theology at Mundelein Seminary. His most recent publications include Jewish-Christian Dialogue and the Life of Wisdom; Christ and the Catholic Priesthood; Participatory Biblical Exegesis; and Biblical Natural Law. He lives Mundelein, Illinois.

Baylor University Press

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