Excellence: The Character of God and the Pursuit of Scholarly Virtue
We are called to excellence in all activities of life, not least in our scholarship and ministry. Outlining virtues directly related to vocation and scholarship, Andreas Kostenberger tells us there is a way to be a better person and a better scholar--without needing to sacrifice our faith at the altar of academic respectability. Here is a call to a life of virtue lived out in excellence.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - LibraryThing
This book urges Christian scholars to pursue excellence in their vocations without compromise. Excellence is grounded upon the excellence of God, God's grace, and Holy Spirit-enabled cultivation of virtues--the pursuit of holiness. I liked how this book is divided into three major sections examining different dimensions of excellence: vocational (entailing such virtues as diligence, courage, passion, restraint, creativity, and eloquence), moral (integrity, fidelity, wisdom), and relational (grace, humility, interdependence, and love). Köstenberger does a good job of outlining the biblical basis for each virtue, explaining how each plays a role in the scholarly vocation, and demonstrating how the virtues build on one another. The different dimensions of excellence must be held in balance. I especially appreciated the book's foundation in the gospel and Köstenberger's final emphasis on what it looks like to be a loving scholar. "Love is capable of breaking down barriers to the gospel where rational arguments are unable to persuade." I was also quite motivated by his insistence on the importance of diligence for scholarly excellence (an area in which I am painfully lacking), and encouraged by his remarks on the possibility that creativity is a virtue which can be cultivated (as I don't tend to regard myself as a creative scholar or person in general). At times I thought that more concrete advice, and a little less anecdotal discussion, might have been helpful in considering how to put virtues into practice. For instance, I would have loved to read some advice on how to sustain passion over the course of a dissertation! This is a great book for getting students to reflect on their callings, though, and I would gladly hand it to any first-year graduate student.
Review: Excellence: The Character of God and the Pursuit of Scholarly VirtueUser Review - Goodreads
In an orderly and compelling way, Kostenberger lays out the case for a renewed interest in the virtues necessary for genuine Christian scholarship. I was impressed by the extensive use of biblical ...