When Jesus Came to Harvard: Making Moral Choices Today

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Houghton Mifflin, 2004 - Religion - 338 pages
2 Reviews
Over the fifteen years that Harvey Cox taught his Harvard undergraduate class Jesus and the Moral Life, the course grew so popular that the lectures had to be taught in a theater usually reserved for rock concerts. The overwhelming response was a clear signal of the hunger for guidance in today's confusing world, where moral guidelines seem to shift daily. How can we ask today "What Would Jesus Do?," when Jesus never had to cope with an unintended pregnancy, or confront a teenage daughter about her drug use, or decide whether to put an ailing parent in a retirement home?
In his new book, Cox brings the moral wisdom of Rabbi Jesus into the twenty-first century by way of the questions, arguments, responses, and doubts of centuries of rabbinic and Christian theological exploration, as well as the voices of the thousands of Harvard students who attended his course over the years. Cox shows how we can extrapolate from Jesus' parables and bridge the gap between the ancient and modern worlds. As an example, he recalls his experience while locked in a southern jail during the civil rights movement, when the song "We Shall Overcome" rang from nearby cells. The message he takes is from the story of the Resurrection: transcendent hope rising from the depths of injustice.
When Jesus Came to Harvard is not another look at the "historical Jesus," but it considers Jesus' contemporary significance by concentrating on the stories he told and those told about him. For youth and adults, Christian and non-Christian, When Jesus Came to Harvard is urgently relevant.

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User Review  - swivelgal - LibraryThing

Love it! I expected a quick read but there is so much content in this book. I thank the author its publishing. My only wish is that it were longer or gave more examples of what the students did in class. Read full review

When Jesus came to Harvard: making moral choices today

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

In the early 1980s, Harvard was stewing over the fact that more and more of its graduates were ethically deviant and many of its undergraduates were ethically ignorant. To address this issue, the ... Read full review

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About the author (2004)

He is the Thomas Professor of Divinity at Harvard University & the author of the groundbreaking The Secular City. His book The Seduction of the Spirit was nominated for a National Book Award. He writes & lectures widely on issues of religion & culture. He is married and lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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