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IVP Academic Church, State and Public Justice: Five Views

Abortion. Physician-assisted suicide. Same-sex marriages. Embryonic stem-cell research. Poverty. Crime. What is a faithful Christian response?

The God of the Bible is unquestionably a God of justice. Yet Christians have had their differences as to how human government and the church should bring about a just social order. Although Christians share many deep and significant theological convictions, differences that threaten to divide them have often surrounded the matter of how the church collectively and Christians individually ought to engage the public square.

What is the mission of the church? What is the purpose of human government? How ought they to be related to each other? How should social injustice be redressed? The five noted contributors to this volume answer these questions from within their distinctive Christian theological traditions, as well as responding to the other four positions. Through the presentations and ensuing dialogue we come to see more clearly what the differences are, where their positions overlap and why they diverge. The contributors and the positions taken include

  • Clarke E. Cochran: A Catholic Perspective
  • Derek H. Davis: A Classical Baptist Perspective
  • Ronald J. Sider: An Evangelical Anabaptist Perspective
  • Corwin F. Smidt: A Reformed Principled Pluralist Perspective
  • J. Philip Wogaman: A Mainline Protestant Perspective
This book will be instructive for anyone seeking to grasp the major Christian alternatives and desiring to pursue a faithful corporate and individual response to the social issues that face us.

Paul C. Kemeny (Ph.D., Princeton Theological Seminary; Th.M., Duke University; M.Div., Westminster Seminary) is professor of religion and humanities at Grove City College in Pennsylvania. His other works include Princeton in the Nation's Service: Religious Ideals and Educational Practice, 1868-1928 and American Church History: A Reader (coedited with Henry Warner Bowden).

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