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Our Program: A Christian Political Manifesto

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A Christian Political Manifesto

What are the political and social implications of the gospel?

In Our Program, Abraham Kuyper makes a comprehensive effort to engage the secular politics of his day with a Christian alternative. In an era where the church usually either controlled or was controlled by the state, Kuyper showed that it was possible to frame a political program where church and state engage each other but remain separate. Though bound to its time, Our Program is timely for Christians looking for examples of faith working in the political sphere.

Praise for Our Program

Our Program served for decades as an inspiration to Kuyper's followers and set a high standard for his opponents to match. For us it sets out the challenge of envisioning what might be an equivalent witness in our own day.

—James D. Bratt, professor of history, Calvin College

Kuyper deserves a place beside Locke and Tocqueville as a titanic European intellect whose thought can help us understand the American experiment in religious liberty and constitutional democracy.

—Greg Forster, Program Director, Faith, Work, and Economics, Kern Family Foundation

Abraham Kuyper’s Our Program has been much quoted by those who share his convictions about the lordship of Christ over all times, places, things, people, and societies. It is, therefore, a real advantage to see a capably translated and helpfully introduced edition of the whole document appear in English. For those concerned about Kuyper’s own historical situation, as well as about contemporary social and political controversies, this edition should be a real boon.

—Mark Noll, Francis A. McAnaney Professor of History, University of Notre Dame

The Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology

Lexham Press is pleased to announce the publication of a major series of new translations of Kuyper’s writings in public theology. Created in partnership with the Abraham Kuyper Translation Society and the Acton Institute, the Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology will mark a historic moment in Kuyper studies, and we hope it will deepen and enrich the church’s interest and engagement in public theology.

 

Top Highlights

“In the face of these fictions and monstrous theories we resolutely maintain the following three propositions: (1) political authority, like every other form of sovereign authority in life, flows from the living God; (2) for the transfer of this authority in the course of history the Lord uses both lawful and unlawful deeds of men; and (3) the transfer takes place to single individuals, to dynasties, to institutions, or to the nation as a whole.” (Page 23)

“Sovereignty in an absolute sense occurs only when there is an authority that has no other authority over it, that always commands and never obeys, that does not admit of restrictions or allow competition, and that is single and undivided for all that has breath.” (Page 16)

“In sum, sovereign political authority that is exercised among the nations of the earth has to cooperate with the laws that govern the life of mankind; with the laws that regulate air and soil and the life of animals in their development; with the laws that have guided the history of our nation and other nations. And only when this entire complex of laws—including the laws for thinking (logic), willing (morality), feeling (aesthetics), and eternal life (religion)—interacts and works together in good order and harmony, does the wheel of life revolve majestically around sovereignty.” (Page 19)

“In this way it severs the ties that bind us to God and his Word, in order to subject both to human criticism. Once you undermine the family by replacing it with self-chosen (often sinful) relationships, once you embrace a whole new set of ideas, rearrange your notions of morality, allow your heart to follow a new direction—once you do this the Encyclopedists will be followed by the Jacobins, the theory by the practice, because ‘the new humanity’ requires a new world. What the philosophers, whose guilt is greater, did to your minds and hearts with pen and compass and scalpel (and would like even more boldly to do to your children) will be carried out by the heroes of the barricades with dagger, torch, and crowbar.” (Pages 2–3)

Contents

  • Translator and Editor’s Introduction by Harry Van Dyke
  • Our Movement
  • Authority
  • The Ordinances of God
  • Government
  • No Secular State
  • “By the Grace of God”
  • Forms of Government
  • Our Constitution
  • Popular Influence
  • Budget Refusal
  • Decentralization
  • Our States and Councils
  • Education
  • The Justice System
  • Public Decency
  • Public Hygiene
  • Finance
  • National Defense
  • Overseas Possessions
  • The Social Question
  • Church and State
  • Party Policy

Product Details

  • Title: Our Program: A Christian Political Manifesto
  • Author: Abraham Kuyper
  • Volume Editor and Translator: Harry Van Dyke
  • Series Editors: Melvin Flikkema & Jordan J. Ballor
  • Publisher: Lexham Press
  • Publication Date: 2015
  • Pages: 432
  • Format: Logos Digital, Hardcover
  • Trim Size: 7x10
  • ISBN: 9781577996552
Abraham Kuyper

Abraham Kuyper (1837–1920) was the Prime Minister of the Netherlands between 1901 and 1905. He founded the Free University in Amsterdam and served as a professor of theology. At the invitation of B. B. Warfield, Kuyper traveled to the United States to deliver the Stone Lectures at Princeton and address Reformed congregations in Michigan and Iowa.

Kuyper studied at the University of Leiden, and received his doctorate there in 1863. He became a minister in the Dutch Reformed Church in 1863, and consistently called for the separation of church and state. He also led a secession from the Dutch Reformed Church and united several disparate Reformed churches in the Netherlands.

Kuyper also led an active political life. He served as a member of Parliament in the Netherlands beginning in 1874 and served as prime minister from 1901–1905.

Abraham Kuyper was instrumental in the development of Neocalvinism, and is remembered for his articulation of common grace and for popularizing the notion of a Reformed worldview. He has influenced such notable figures as Francis Schaeffer, Cornelius Van Til, Alvin Plantinga, Nicholas Wolterstorff, and Chuck Colson.

Some of Kuyper’s publications, which are available in Logos, include Wisdom & Wonder: Common Grace in Science & Art, The Antithesis between Symbolism and Revelation, and Encyclopedia of Sacred Theology: Its Principles.

Sample Pages from Our Program

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    $44.99

    Print list price: $49.99
    Save $5.00 (10%)