Paperback. 298 pp. $24.95

The doctrine of creation is obviously one of the first things, but it is also one of the last things since the world to come is also, by definition, creation. The simple truth that it is so is incontestable since neither the world to come nor those whose dwelling it is built to be are God. But the way in which this is so is the subject of a long, long debate in Christendom, with the question of whether and in what degree the life to come is continuous with this one. How common is the “thing” in “first thing” and “last thing”?

Our answer to this question conditions our answer to many others: the relationship of philosophy to theology, of the church to the saeculum, of the kingdom of Christ to the visible church. This volume brings together the careful investigations of established and emerging historians and theologians, exploring how these questions have been addressed at different points in Christian history, and what they mean for us today.

Includes contributions from James Bratt, E.J. Hutchinson, Matthew Tuininga, Andrew Fulford, Laurence O’Donnell, Benjamin Miller, Brian Auten, and Joseph Minich.

If you are interested in a bulk order, we offer a 40% discount and $10 shipping for orders of 10+ books OR orders containing 5+ copies of a single book. We also offer a 50% discount and free shipping for orders with a gross retail value over $500. To place a bulk order, please contact [email protected]org.

The Editors

Bradford Littlejohn holds a Ph.D in Theology and Ethics and is the author of several books and articles. He is President of the Davenant Institute.

Peter Escalante holds an M.A. in Philosophy and serves as Editor of The Calvinist International and previous Vice-President of the Davenant Institute.
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“Abraham Kuyper’s neo-Calvinism, with its communitarian and pluralist vision for social existence, served as a clarion call to cultural and political involvement by conservative Christians in twentieth century Europe and America.  These essays demonstrate both the complexity and the continued vitality of this tradition as Christians today wrestle with the possibilities and limits of social transformation.”

– William B. Evans, Younts Prof. of Bible and Religion, Erskine College


For the Healing of the Nations contains excellent scholarship and persuasive reasoning on issues confronting the Christian community. I’m particularly pleased that the authors seek to avoid encouraging factionalism. I hope that this volume attracts many readers and sound practical applications in church and society, for the glory of Jesus throughout the world.”

-Prof. John M. Frame, J. D. Trimble Professor of Systematic Theology and Philosophy at Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando


“The initial publishing foray of The Davenant Trust is a great one…. The published versions of the conference papers are uniformly excellent. Each demonstrates a deep scholarly familiarity with its subject matter and an even deeper concern to address topics relevant to a wide sweep of neo-Calvinist thought in America…. The essays are important to anyone who takes seriously the effects of thinkers such as Dutchmen Abraham Kuyper and Herman Bavinck as well as Americans who followed in their tradition.”

-Prof. C. Scott Pryor, Professor of Law, Regent University


“These essays serve helpfully to advance several important conversations occurring today…within Reformed theology and life. The subject range is broad enough to attract a wide range of participants into the conversation, and the comprehensive attention given by each author is sufficient to lead readers deeper into the relevant sources. But let the reader be warned: the history of ideas, including theological ideas, is neither as linear nor as univocal as we are often led to believe.”

-Dr. Nelson D. Kloostermann, Executive Director at Worldview Resources International

Table of Contents

Peter Escalante 
1 Abraham Kuyper: A Compact Introduction
Dr. James D. Bratt
2 Sphere Sovereignty among Abraham Kuyper’s Other Political Theories
Dr. James D. Bratt
3 And Zeus Shall Have No Dominion, or, How, When, Where, and Why to “Plunder the Egyptians”: The Case of Jerome
Dr. E. J. Hutchinson
4 “The Kingdom of Christ is Spiritual”: John Calvin’s Concept of the Restoration of the World
Dr. Matthew J. Tuininga
5 Participating in Political Providence: The Theological Foundations of Resistance in Calvin
Andrew Fulford
6 “Bavinck’s bug” or “Van Tilian” hypochondria?: An analysis of Prof. Oliphint’s assertion that cognitive realism and Reformed theology are incompatible
Laurence O’Donnell
7 De-Klining From Chalcedon: Exegetical Roots Of The “R2k” Project
Rev. Benjamin Miller
8 Narrating Christian Transformationalism: Rousas J. Rushdoony and Christian Reconstructionism in Current Histories of American Religion and Politics
Dr. Brian J. Auten
9 Nature and Grace, Visible and Invisible: A New Look at the Question of Infant Baptism
Joseph Minich


The Convivium Irenicum is an annual gathering of scholars, students, and pastors to exchange ideas, deepen friendships, and explore and apply the Reformed faith today.

The Davenant Institute supports the renewal of Christian wisdom for the contemporary church. It seeks to sponsor historical scholarship at the intersection of the church and academy, build networks of friendship and collaboration within the Reformed and evangelical world, and equip the saints with time-tested resources for faithful public witness.

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