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The book will provide the reader with much food for thought

By: 'Nora Jonkers, Catholic Weekly' - 27th of April 2008

In ‘A Documentary Presentation of Christian Ethics in Holy Scripture’, Fr John Maxwell provides a documentary history of the doctrine concerning the commandments of God in two covenants.


He clearly explains his purpose in the Preface when he writes that the book ‘is intended to be an introduction to the study of duties, rights and justice. It is also intended to be an introduction to the study of the development of moral doctrine in Holy Scripture, since each commandment of God is treated separately and historically as a permanently valid theme.’


The book commences with a general chapter on the covenant commandments of God, which serves as a clear and succinct introduction to the topic.


Fr Maxwell begins by examining the Ten Commandments as found in Exodus and Deuteronomy, and continues through the Old Testament prophets, before moving on to the Gospels and other writings of the New Testament.


He then traces this development for each of the commandments in the 14 chapters that follow.


Interestingly he has examined the fourth commandment from a number of different perspectives because he believes that this commandment not only refers to the reciprocal duties of sons and daughters in relation to their parents, but also extends to relationships associated with those in authority in intermediary institutions, political government, and international organisations, as well as those in religious authority.


The book will provide the reader with much food for thought and will be especially appreciated by those who have an interest in this topic.


Fr John Maxwell is a Catholic priest who has spent many years tracing this development of doctrine not only in Holy Scripture but also in Christian documents.


His other books include ‘Duties, Rights and Justice’ and he has also published many articles.


– Nora Jonkers, Review of ‘Christian Ethics in Holy Scripture’ by John Francis Maxwell in ‘The Catholic Weekly’, 27 April 2008


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