Richard B. Miller

in The Oxford Handbook of Theological Ethics

Published in print August 2007 | ISBN: 9780199227228
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology


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Rules refer to normative regulations of individual or corporate behaviour. In Christian ethics, rules allow one to evaluate the conduct of individuals, the practices of intentional Christian groups, and the procedures and policies of complex institutions, some of which may have clear religious commitment. This article shows that a pragmatist account of how rules are justified and their conflicts adjudicated enables us to handle some basic problems in moral theory. It also invites us to revisit some theological problems in a new light. Viewing rules as an open-textured set of cultural artefacts and institutions enables us to handle the traditional problems of Pharisaism and Pelagianism from a modern point of view.

Keywords: pragmatist; moral theory; Pharisaism; Pelagianism; Christian ethics

Article.  8052 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Religious Studies ; Philosophy of Religion

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