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Archive for the ‘Ronald Nash’ Category

 

Ronald Nash. Social Justice and the Christian Church.  Lima, OH: Academic Renewal Press, January 10th 2002. 180 pp.

5 out of 5

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Want to read a book to understand a biblical worldview concerning the issues and topics brought up in the name of social justice?  This book looks at contemporary beliefs under the web of “social justice” and explains to readers why some the agendas are problematic logically in terms of internally within the advocates’ own beliefs, factually with economics and historical considerations and also biblically.  The work is academic without being dry and I appreciate that the author was nuanced in his writing such as pointing out one as a Christian should have concern for the poor but we must also equally as well be concern about the means to help the poor.  I appreciated that the content in this book did not have a single attack on a person’s character which is so different than today’s politics; instead the content but focused on the issues.  The book was written by the late Ronald Nash which sadly I wished more Christians today would know more about.  Nash is a capable Christian theologian, philosopher, apologist and political and economic thinker who was a two term advisor to the United States’ Civil Rights Commission.  This book certainly didn’t disappoint and was very helpful.

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Many of Dooyeweerd’s work have not been translated into English and those who are familiar with Dooyeweerd’s philosophy are typically among Reformed Christians. Given how little of Dooyeweerd’s philosophy exists in English, this particular book is unique in that it goes beyond just an introduction to this Dutch Reformed philosopher but also constructive criticism from a capable theologically Reformed philosopher. The author Ronald Nash does a good job introducing the gist of Dooyeweerd’s philosophy and ends the book summarizing the positive contribution and negative criticism of “Amsterdam” philosophy. Some might have been aware of Nash’s critique at times has the flavor of Gordon Clark, with the criticism of definitions and possible equivocation. Nash does a fair job of giving Dooyeweerd the benefit of the doubt and the bulk of his criticism is quite legitimate. Most serious in my view is Dooyeweerd’s concept of religion as distinct from theology, and whether the aspects or modes relate to one another as the way Dooyeweerd always states it. Their is no doubt that Dooyeweerd’s general insight is valuable in Christian philosophy and apologetics such as the concept of the inter-relationship of spheres and distinct laws for different modes, or how the autonomous man’s idolatry tend to reduce one sphere as absolute and thereby result in irrationality. This book takes Dooyeweerd’s contribution seriously yet critically and no doubt a benefit to the reader.

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