Today I was blessed to receive a signed copy of J. P. Moreland's new book, The Recalcitrant Imago Dei: Human Persons and the Failure of Naturalism (SCM Press, 2009)
J. P. is a dear friend who I have known since 1987. We edited a book together (along with William Lane Craig, who is pictured with J. P. and me above), To Every One An Answer: A Case for the Christian Worldview (IVP, 2004), have lectured together at a variety of venues and academic conferences, and are the general editors of a forthcoming monograph series with InterVarsity Press on Christian Worldview Integration. He has been not only a dear friend, but a Christian scholar from whom I have learned so very much both philosophically and spiritually. And during some very difficult times each of us has had over the past decade (mine, unlike J.P's, made the papers), we leaned on each other's counsel and encouragement.
So, I was deeply moved when I saw that J. P. dedicated his new book to me:
"To Francis Beckwith. Sturdy lover of the Imago Dei."
I am humbled by the honor bestowed on me by my dear friend.
How fitting that J. P.'s book arrived only moments before my wife and I drove to Saturday vigil Mass at which we heard these words of Christ in the Gospel reading (John 15:9-17 - NAB):
"I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy might be complete. This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father. It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I command you: love one another."