What kind of political theology do we need in an age after Christendom?

Dr. David VanDrunen joins Matt and Derek to discuss his latest book, Politics After Christendom: Political Theology in a Fractured World, where he aims to answer this question in a way that prepares Christians to live in societies that are indifferent or hostile to the faith, and gives answers as to how our own political responsibilities might look as we live in the world as sojourners and exiles. Listen in to hear questions on the differences between the Adamic and Noahic covenants, if creation was itself an act of grace, and how Christians should speak out against the state, and more.

Timestamps:

In a time when government restrictions are impacting religious bodies in new ways, what is it that authorizes government in the first place? [0:00 – 4:50]

Why should we start our political theologies with the Noahic Covenant instead of the Adamic Covenant? [4:50 – 7:30]

How the Noahic Covenant takes-up Adamic tasks and reauthorizes them for a fallen world [7:30 – 11:28]

Since The Great Flood is later interpreted in the NT in ways that seem to be redemptive, does this nullify the Noahic Covenant being a common covenant? [11:28 – 15:39]

Is the creation of nature itself a dispensation of grace? [15:39 – 21:28]

The relation of governance in creation and governments generally [21:28 – 26:11]

Was Christendom an aberration or was it a legitimate response to the mission of the church, and should Christians conform the state to certain norms that help the preaching of the gospel? [26:11 – 30:52]

In Ch. 23 of the Westminster Confession of Faith, it says, “Yet as nursing fathers, it is the duty of civil magistrates to protect the church of our common Lord, without giving the preference to any denomination of Christians above the rest, in such a manner that all ecclesiastical persons whatever shall enjoy the full, free, and unquestioned liberty of discharging every part of their sacred functions, without violence or danger.” Does the Westminster Confession, then, assume and affirm a kind of Christendom? [30:52 – 37:13]

Does the church have a role to speak against the state when it not only breaks the natural law but when it contradicts special revelation? [37:13 – 44:38]

What sort of comfort do these political ethics provide for Christians, especially in the midst of a hyperpartisan political climate? + Conclusion [44:38 – 51:57]

Resources mentioned:

Amazon link – Politics After Christendom: Political Theology in a Fractured World

Zondervan link – Politics After Christendom: Political Theology in a Fractured World

If you’re interested in supporting the show financially, you can check out our Patreon here.

Finally, as always, follow DerekAndrew, and Alastair for more tweet-sized brilliance. Thanks to Timothy Motte for his sound editing work. And thanks to The Joy Eternal for lending us their music, which everybody should download out of gratitude for their kindness.

Posted by Caleb Wait

Caleb Wait (MATS, Westminster Seminary California) is a writer and the producer of Mere Fidelity. He and his wife Kristin have two children and live in Northern California. You can follow him on Twitter @calebwait and he invites you to email him at ciwait93@gmail.com.

  • Bryan

    Just listened to the third episode of “Casting Across the Pond”, first “Mere Fidelity” and Matt’s first sound bite was sarcasm. I love it. Thanks for all the conversations over the last six years!