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Redeeming Law: Christian Calling and the Legal Profession

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Being a Christian lawyer is possible, but not easy. Law professor Michael Schutt believes that although there are significant obstacles, Christians belong in the legal profession and should regard it as a sacred calling. The Christian God is, after all, a God concerned with justice, both divine and human. However, the pathway beginning with law school and leading to the da Being a Christian lawyer is possible, but not easy. Law professor Michael Schutt believes that although there are significant obstacles, Christians belong in the legal profession and should regard it as a sacred calling. The Christian God is, after all, a God concerned with justice, both divine and human. However, the pathway beginning with law school and leading to the daily demands of practice doesn't provide much guidance for pursuing law as a Christian calling. Schutt offers this book as a vital resource for reconceiving the theoretical foundations of law and gives practical guidance for maintaining integrity within a challenging profession. A hopeful and practical book for law students and those serving in the legal profession.


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Being a Christian lawyer is possible, but not easy. Law professor Michael Schutt believes that although there are significant obstacles, Christians belong in the legal profession and should regard it as a sacred calling. The Christian God is, after all, a God concerned with justice, both divine and human. However, the pathway beginning with law school and leading to the da Being a Christian lawyer is possible, but not easy. Law professor Michael Schutt believes that although there are significant obstacles, Christians belong in the legal profession and should regard it as a sacred calling. The Christian God is, after all, a God concerned with justice, both divine and human. However, the pathway beginning with law school and leading to the daily demands of practice doesn't provide much guidance for pursuing law as a Christian calling. Schutt offers this book as a vital resource for reconceiving the theoretical foundations of law and gives practical guidance for maintaining integrity within a challenging profession. A hopeful and practical book for law students and those serving in the legal profession.

30 review for Redeeming Law: Christian Calling and the Legal Profession

  1. 4 out of 5

    Stephen Bloom

    Mike Schutt pulls no punches in this provocative and inspiring challenge to those of us lawyers who claim to be followers of Christ. While undergirded by faithful optimism, this isn't some shallow feel-good book offering easy answers. To the contrary, Schutt calls Christian attorneys to a comprehensive and thoroughly transformative model of redemptive legal thinking. To get a sense of how Mike cuts straight to the hearts of those who practice the profession of law, consider just one of the many Mike Schutt pulls no punches in this provocative and inspiring challenge to those of us lawyers who claim to be followers of Christ. While undergirded by faithful optimism, this isn't some shallow feel-good book offering easy answers. To the contrary, Schutt calls Christian attorneys to a comprehensive and thoroughly transformative model of redemptive legal thinking. To get a sense of how Mike cuts straight to the hearts of those who practice the profession of law, consider just one of the many blunt questions he asks: "How do we know that the lawyer's calling is - or can be - legitimate love of and service to neighbor rather than simply respectable prostitution?" Ouch. If you, like me, are a lawyer honestly seeking to serve and honor Jesus in and through your legal vocation, then you need to open this book, the sooner the better. You will be blessed in your ongoing struggle to genuinely integrate your faith and your career. While I might consider my own book, The Believer's Guide to Legal Issues, to be a "must read" for Christian laypersons facing common legal issues, Redeeming Law is absolutely a "must read" for Christian lawyers!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Drew

    Should be required reading for every lawyer who professes to be a Christian or a person of faith. The law profession has lost its way in America. As a result, persons of faith who practice law often pay a heavy price in their personal and professional lives. Society as well pays a heavy price. By conforming to the common idea that the role of an attorney is to be an advocate for their client and by ignoring that a person of the Jewish or Christian faith is to be dedicated to justice, protecting t Should be required reading for every lawyer who professes to be a Christian or a person of faith. The law profession has lost its way in America. As a result, persons of faith who practice law often pay a heavy price in their personal and professional lives. Society as well pays a heavy price. By conforming to the common idea that the role of an attorney is to be an advocate for their client and by ignoring that a person of the Jewish or Christian faith is to be dedicated to justice, protecting the widow, the orphan and the disadvantaged, and doing what is right in the sight of God, the lawyer of faith often lives a bifurcated life--living in Caesar's world during the work week and practicing their faith the rest of the time. I was encouraged and challenged by this book. Plus, it was the first book I read on my new kindle!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan

    A marvellous book written by an author that holds his own with Schaeffer, Piper and Lewis. Michae Schutt was a former law school professor of mine. I recently had the opportunity to share the podium with him in addressing the current Regent University school of law student body. The subject matter of his speech, as well as our private conversations, compelled me to purchase his book, "Redeeming Law." Given the title and subject matter, the tome may be of greater interest to those engaged in the A marvellous book written by an author that holds his own with Schaeffer, Piper and Lewis. Michae Schutt was a former law school professor of mine. I recently had the opportunity to share the podium with him in addressing the current Regent University school of law student body. The subject matter of his speech, as well as our private conversations, compelled me to purchase his book, "Redeeming Law." Given the title and subject matter, the tome may be of greater interest to those engaged in the legal as opposed to other professions. Nonetheless, Schutt's discussion of the integrated man v. the fractured man, as well as his detailed analysis of the necessity of unity, community and integrity in the creation-fall-redemption paradigm, are of great benefit to anyone seeking to understand the created whole nature of man. The book is by no means an easy read and may, in fact, be one of the most difficult volumes with which I have wrestled. The reward, however, is equal to or greater than the effort and the knowledge is challenging. As Piper would encourage, reading means thinking and there is no point to reading unless you want to be actively involved. This book, then, is true exercise.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    Redeeming Law aids the Christian lawyer in transforming his view of his practice. Its best quality is emphasizing that work (vocation) is serving Christ and our neighbors; it is not distinct from "Christian ministry" within the local church. Our calling as lawyers must be integrated with the other aspects of our lives -- our callings as husbands, fathers, and church members. We serve and love God and our neighbors by doing our work in a biblical way and with a biblical mindset. The book is more Redeeming Law aids the Christian lawyer in transforming his view of his practice. Its best quality is emphasizing that work (vocation) is serving Christ and our neighbors; it is not distinct from "Christian ministry" within the local church. Our calling as lawyers must be integrated with the other aspects of our lives -- our callings as husbands, fathers, and church members. We serve and love God and our neighbors by doing our work in a biblical way and with a biblical mindset. The book is more theory than practice. Significant (though surface-level) practical applications don't come until the final 18 pages. It contains too many sentences like this: "We work out norms (through general and special revelation) in light of community (historical and present) existentially (in the context of our dignity as a human and in the context of calling, role, or office)." It is uniformly humorless. But it has helped me recognize the significance (and the benefit if done right) of what I do as a lawyer, not on a global level, but on a personal and spiritual level).

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nathan Moelker

    This book has shaped my understanding of what it means to be a Christian Lawyer. It has encouraged me and helped me to get past many of the stereotypes that are so thickly prevalent throughout our society. This book is a clarion call for lawyers of virtue who will fight wholeheartedly for justice in the service of the Lord, fulfilling their vocation in the service of the kingdom. This book was one of the prime factors in encouraging me to go to law school, and I'd recommend it to any believer co This book has shaped my understanding of what it means to be a Christian Lawyer. It has encouraged me and helped me to get past many of the stereotypes that are so thickly prevalent throughout our society. This book is a clarion call for lawyers of virtue who will fight wholeheartedly for justice in the service of the Lord, fulfilling their vocation in the service of the kingdom. This book was one of the prime factors in encouraging me to go to law school, and I'd recommend it to any believer considering law school.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

    A fairly comprehensive overview of a lawyer's work and identity in light of the gospel. Schutt draws extensively from theology on vocation and makes a study of the different stages and facets of a lawyer's journey starting from the disorienting experience of law school to practice and the need for community. A fairly comprehensive overview of a lawyer's work and identity in light of the gospel. Schutt draws extensively from theology on vocation and makes a study of the different stages and facets of a lawyer's journey starting from the disorienting experience of law school to practice and the need for community.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Philip

    Schutt makes a lot of good points, but this book could easily have been 100 pages shorter.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    This is a superb book. Michael Schutt has put Christian lawyers in his debt. This is a must-read book for all Christian lawyers and perhaps more importantly for their pastors. He shows that a Christian lawyer, contrary to popular opinion, is not an oxymoron. The book is in three main parts: the lost lawyer; integrity; and integrity in practice. In the first Schutt exposes the jettosoning of the law's moorings in the Christian faith to be replaced by a form of instrumentalism . No longer is law tr This is a superb book. Michael Schutt has put Christian lawyers in his debt. This is a must-read book for all Christian lawyers and perhaps more importantly for their pastors. He shows that a Christian lawyer, contrary to popular opinion, is not an oxymoron. The book is in three main parts: the lost lawyer; integrity; and integrity in practice. In the first Schutt exposes the jettosoning of the law's moorings in the Christian faith to be replaced by a form of instrumentalism . No longer is law transcendent but it has become a social construct that knows nothing of its religious roots and presuppositions. He also shows how the church's neglect of the concept of vocation has served to secularise law. This first section is an excellent overview of secularisation in general and how it applies to law and lawyers in particular. The result has been an emphasis on personal piety to the exclusion of transformational aspects of faith: 'Personal piety alone is insufficient to the task of bringing one's law practice under the headship of Christ' (p. 82). Part two looks at ways of becoming more integrated and whole in the approach to faith and law. It focuses on the lawyer. It provides tools and insights for combatting the influence of dualism. He rightly places an emphasis on community and accountability. We cannot be lone disciples. It is good to read of the importance of 'spiritual disciplines' in the context of a transformational approach. We need to be who God wants us to be so that we can do what God wants us to do (p. 175). As the church restores and recaptures vocational thinking then it really can become the place where 'lawyers can learn how to love God as lawyers' (p. 129). Discipleship and worldview can embrace. The final part looks at the law in practice - here he draws upon the work of Scott Pryor who develops a 'paradigm for integrated thinking', a biblical-theological integration in the law. This provides a good foundation in which to develop a Christian perspective on the role of lawyer as advocate and as consellor, which Schutt does here. In an appendix he examines: the doctrine of the atonement as it relates to theories of punishment; biblical perspectives on contract consideration in the common law; and the Sermon on the Mount as it illuminates the criminal law. These provide excellent models of law-faith integration. At the end of each chapter are excellent questions that promote self-reflection and would be ideal for group debate and discussion. Schutt draws upon a wide range of resources including Kuyper, Richard Foster, Newbigin, William Blackstone and natural law. I'm more agnostic about natural law than Schutt, but much of what he says about natural law isn't much different to the common grace perspective. The book also provides a model for other professions - not only lawyers will benefit from this book, but anyone involved in a vocation (and that includes us all!). It will provide much food for thought and a much needed challenge to integrate faith and career; it will certainly help bridge the sacred-secualr and private-public divide that has stunted much of Christian discipleship. I originally started to read this book on my kindle - it was so good I had to get a hard copy so that I could lend it out. If I was a law maker I would create a new law to make this compulsory reading for all lawyers. If you are a pastor with a lawyer in the congregation, I humbly suggest that, this should be mandatory reading. Contents Acknowledgments Introduction Part I. The Lost Lawyer 1. The Lost Lawyer 2. The American Law School Experience 3. Vocation and the Local Church 4. Thinking about Lawyering Part II. Integrity 5. Integrity 6. Unity and the Integrated Lawyer 7. Community and Trinitarian Lawyering 8. Truth and the Integrated Lawyer 9. Integrity in Practice: Spiritual Disciplines Part III. Integrity in Practice 10. Professional Identity, Integrity and Modernity 11. Lawyers' Vices--Lawyers' Virtues 12. Law and Truth Conclusion Appendix Author and Subject Index Scripture Index

  9. 5 out of 5

    Eugene

    Loved the content except I felt this book was in need of a final polish. Some of the material was too repetitive and felt like it could have been organized better. Also, there were one too many typos which made the text seem unfinished. I would have given this book 4 stars otherwise. But back to the content, some of Schutt's earlier chapter's are incredibly thought-provoking on the integration of one's work and one's faith in Jesus. So many modern people live disintegrated lives, and he shows how Loved the content except I felt this book was in need of a final polish. Some of the material was too repetitive and felt like it could have been organized better. Also, there were one too many typos which made the text seem unfinished. I would have given this book 4 stars otherwise. But back to the content, some of Schutt's earlier chapter's are incredibly thought-provoking on the integration of one's work and one's faith in Jesus. So many modern people live disintegrated lives, and he shows how lawyers especially fall into this trap. If anything, this book gave several clear and necessary warnings regarding what it means to be a Christian in law school and practicing law, and what it looks like to safely navigate such treacherous waters. It was also effective in its attempt to show how deeply faith and the law are intertwined. One thing I do wish was that the Schutt gave more examples of what a believing lawyer looked like. The few times he did, the result was quite beautiful(p.251). I wish there were more!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Curtis

    Even if you will never enter law this book is still an important read for you. 90% of it is applicable to all areas of life and work so take a look. Great intro to a reformational worldview with many suggestions for further reading. This book helped change my view of work and the doctrine of vocation.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Hong

    Practical and easy to comprehend, except I found it slightly draggy. But overall a very sound and Bible-based book. Schutt challenges lawyers/law students to think and consider carefully the legal education/practice, which is a good reminder for all.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Willis

    Good introduction to Christian worldview for attorneys. The readers come away thinking they have got a ton more to learn, but I think that's exactly what the author wants. Good introduction to Christian worldview for attorneys. The readers come away thinking they have got a ton more to learn, but I think that's exactly what the author wants.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Reynolds

    I came in with low expectations for this but thought it was absolutely brilliant. For any Christian or law student or both who has contemplated the greater meaning of their vocation.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Dean

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kelly Deibler

  17. 4 out of 5

    Josh L

  18. 5 out of 5

    Anthony Wong

  19. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Mitchell

  20. 5 out of 5

    Morgan Hinds

  21. 5 out of 5

    JDF

  22. 5 out of 5

    M. Jon & Laura Reagan

  23. 4 out of 5

    Scott_kissee

  24. 5 out of 5

    TΞΞL❍CK Mith!lesh

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sheena Valero

  26. 5 out of 5

    Crystal

  27. 5 out of 5

    Doug Ritcheson

  28. 5 out of 5

    Bryan Parady

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn Thomas

  30. 4 out of 5

    J

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