Author: Thomas D. Pearson

Thomas D. Pearson is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas-Pan American in Edinburg, Texas.

The Ethics of Science/The Science of Ethics: Moving beyond the dichotomy towards a Lutheran approach

0   [1] Over the past two centuries within the Western intellectual tradition, considerations of the relationship between science and ethics have moved in two distinct and largely opposite directions. This paper examines these two directions and poses ideas and questions in order to move Lutheran thinkers towards a new way of thinking about the […]

Bonhoeffer and the End of Christian Ethics

[1] On April 30, 1944, less than year before his execution, Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote a long letter from his cell at the prison in Tegel to his friend Eberhard Bethge, a letter that achieved posthumous renown for Bonhoeffer’s discussion of “religionless Christianity.” Indeed, Bethge was later to write that this “first great theological letter” of […]

Response to John Stumme on Conscience

See “Conscience-bound Beliefs” Rule and the “Conscience-bound-belief” Rule by John R. Stumme [1] John R. Stumme is right1: with “bound conscience” the ELCA has bought an unfocused concept with an undefined purpose and an unspecified scope of application, whose usefulness is uncertain and whose consequences are unknown, perhaps because its biblical origins are unstated. Stumme […]

Martin Luther’s Pragmatic Revision of Traditional Natural Law Theory

[1] In his 1535 Commentary on St. Paul’s Epistle to the Galatians, Martin Luther offers up the following set of judgments: For albeit that all men have a certain natural knowledge implanted in their minds (Rom. ii. 14), whereby they naturally perceive that they ought to do unto others as they would have others do […]

Luther on Natural Law

[1] Can Lutherans do ethics? No doubt Lutherans can act ethically, and there certainly are Lutherans who engage in ethical reflection and analysis. But can Lutherans do ethics as Lutherans; that is, can Lutherans articulate models of moral conduct, or render appropriate judgments in ethically congested situations, in ways that are strictly derived from Lutheran […]

The Ethics of Nanotechnology: A Lutheran Reflection

[1] This year, my three-year-old granddaughter wanted a doll for Christmas – but a very special kind of doll. “I want a doll just like me,” she instructed the family. “Only better.” [2] My granddaughter was not envisioning a doll manufactured by cloning her genetic material, or generated by cultivating an embryonic stem cell line, […]