Goodness & State by J. Daryl Charles

Review

Goodness & State

The Good of Politics: A Biblical, Historical, and Contemporary Introduction
by James W. Skillen
Engaging Culture Series
Baker Academic, 2014
(214 pages, $22.99, paperback)

reviewed by J. Daryl Charles

What does the Christian view of reality have to offer in terms of justice and the responsibilities of human governance? Is there a "Christian distinctive" as it relates to statecraft, political activity, and citizenship? And to what extent can one speak of Christianity as a dynamic shaper of human civilization? These questions are at the heart of James W. Skillen's The Good of Politics, written under the conviction that the foundations of Christian social and political engagement must be renewed in every generation.

Skillen is a seasoned writer who has thought deeply about the contours of an authentically Christian understanding of politics. Founder and former president of the Center for Public Justice in Washington, D.C., he has for decades written incisively on the role of government, the character of justice, Christian political activity, and the need for a principled pluralist arrangement in our cultural context.

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J. Daryl Charles is the Acton Institute Affiliated Scholar in Theology & Ethics. He is the author or editor of twenty books, including Retrieving the Natural Law (2008), Natural Law and Religious Freedom (2018), and, most recently, Just War and Christian Traditions (forthcoming). He is also co-editor of Abraham Kuyper, Common Grace: God's Gifts for a Fallen World, Volume 3 (2020). He is a contributing editor to Touchstone.

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