Title

The Practice of Law as Christian Discipleship

Abstract

“Can the ordinary practice of law be a religious calling?” In a number of scholarly books and articles, as a teacher, and as a mentor, Robert (Bob) Cochrane has answered this question with a resounding “yes.” This essay, part of a festschrift published in Bob’s honor by the Pepperdine Law Review, engages with his work to propose a framework of Christian ethics for reconceiving the practice of law as a form of Christian discipleship. It argues that Christians should understand the practice of law as participation in government-as judgment, participation that is always fraught with the risks of deceit, injustice, and abuse of power. Christians can nevertheless exercise the theological virtues of faith, hope, and love as they participate in judgment, while trusting that their participation may facilitate those virtues’ further development.

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