Journal Article

Freedom in Responsibility: A Response

Brent Waters

in Christian bioethics: Non-Ecumenical Studies in Medical Morality

Published on behalf of The Journal of Christian Bioethics Inc

Volume 11, issue 2, pages 167-173
Published in print January 2005 | ISSN: 1380-3603
Published online January 2005 | e-ISSN: 1744-4195 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/13803600500203863
Freedom in Responsibility: A Response

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This paper is a critical response to Elisabeth Gräb-Schmidt's article “Freedom in responsibility: On the relevance of ‘sin’ as hermeneutic guiding principle in bioethical decision making.“ Gräb-Schmidt's chief contention is that ethics begins with anthropology, and that moral responsibility is thereby grounded within a set of given limits. Freedom is distorted into sin when these limits are transgressed. My principal complaint is that her account of the relationship between freedom and sin is grounded in a tragic ontology. Alternatively, I contend that anthropology is grounded in Christology in which freedom is a gift of the Spirit. Consequently, sin is not so much tragic as it marks a refusal of humans to accept their divine election. The issues of human cloning and embryonic stem-cell research are used to exemplify what difference these respective differences might make in a process of moral deliberation.

Keywords: anthropology; Christology; cloning; freedom; moral agency; responsibility; sin; stem-cell research

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Christian Life and Practice ; Medical Ethics

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