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On the Church
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A volume from the Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology series, On the Church contains seven of Abraham Kuyper's essential essays and speeches on the church as it relates to its surrounding culture. A theologian, pastor, politician, and activist, Kuyper was greatly concerned about not only the state of the Dutch church in his time, but also about the church's role and influence within the modern world. These newly translated works illuminate Kuyper's conviction that Christians must take an active role in the world, a world upheld by God's common grace but standing in need of God's particular grace in Christ.
Kuyper's essays urge Christians to neither hide within the doors of their church buildings nor give in to the temptation to be active in earthly institutions alone, but rather remain "rooted and grounded" (Eph. 3:17)—both in essence and form. Such a church should be Reformed in its confessions; democratic rather than patrician; free instead of coerced; independent of the state; and all this in its doctrine, worship, and work of mercy. Within this anthology, one of the greatest theologians of the 19th and 20th centuries forwards a call to modern Christians to recapture the true call and mission of the church universal—to be a living and life-giving, yet organized and established church.
An introductory essay by Ad de Bruijne answers how Kuyper's doctrine of the church may be applied in the 21st century.
Number of Pages: 656
Vendor: Lexham Press
Publication Date: 2016
|Dimensions: 10.00 X 7.00 (inches)|
Series: Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology
Sojourners and Strangers: The Doctrine of the ChurchGregg R. AllisonCrossway / 2012 / Hardcover$33.99 Retail:
$45.00Save 24% ($11.01)
Jordan J. Ballor (ThD, University of Zurich; PhD, Calvin Theological Seminary) is a research fellow at the Acton Institute and serves as executive editor of the Journal of Markets and Morality. He is also associate director of the Junius Institute for Digital Reformation Research at Calvin Theological Seminary.
Melvin Flikkema (PhD, Fuller Theological Seminary) is Senior Advisor at the Acton Institute. He coordinated the translation of the Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology. He was previously the Provost of Kuyper College.
Abraham Kuyper (1837-1920) was one of the most extraordinary individuals of his time. A prolific intellectual and theologian, he founded the Free University in Amsterdam and was instrumental in the development of Neo-Calvinism. He was also an active politician, serving as a member of Parliament in the Netherlands beginning in 1874 and serving as Prime Minister from 1901 to 1905.
At this intersection of church and state, he devoted much of his writing towards developing a public theology. His passion was to faithfully understand and engage culture through a Christian worldview. The most famous example is his articulation of the doctrine of common grace. His work has influenced countless others, including Francis Schaeffer, Cornelius Van Til, and Alvin Plantinga.
"Many of Abraham Kuyper's insights have had a hand in guiding my ecclesiological reflection for decades. This new collection of Kuyper's essays on the church, introduced by two helpful essays that show his contemporary significance, will demonstrate his ongoing importance for today's ecclesiological discussion. Kuyper writes in a time when the church is being marginalised to the private sphere under the tidal wave of the hostile religious vision of Enlightenment modernity. He struggles to find a role for the comprehensive missional vocation of the church in the public square that embraces both the insights of Anabaptism (the church is a colony of the kingdom) and Christendom (the church has shared public responsibility for cultural development) in ways similar to Lesslie Newbigin. That is precisely what we need today."
—Michael W. Goheen, Director of Theological Education, MTC, Scholar-in-Residence, Surge Network
"Years ago as a young church planter struggling around in the dark to understand the church's proper relationship to the culture around it, I discovered Kuyper's brilliant insight that the church is simultaneously a living organism and an institution. This profound insight was like a flash of lightning illuminating the path forward. I instantly recognized it as a way of thinking about the church that would renew it and empower her members to impact and shape the culture around it. It was both inward, focused on the biblical health of the institution, and outward, giving Christians the vision to missionally engage the culture outside the walls of the church. His insight became a valuable guide shaping everything we did at the church. Years later, I am so thankful for this new volume, On the Church, where Kuyper's valuable insights are now available for a new generation of pastors and theologians and church members who desperately need a vibrant public theology to guide them in these parlous times. I can't recommend this volume highly enough."
—Jim Belcher, President, Providence Christian College
"Who was Abraham Kuyper and what did he believe? For those who want to go deeper than just a snapshot and a summary, the Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology series provides depth and development in a very accessible format. Kuyper was not static as a person and the writings presented illumine a Kuyper who continually addressed the culture, context and church of his day. On the Church challenges us to engage the insights presented and the categories that are defined and refined by Kuyper. You may not always agree with Kuyper's articulations or his conclusions, but his ecclesiastical insights can still serve as a vital resource for the church today!"
—Jul Medenblik, President, Calvin Theological Seminary