Lectures on Calvinism 9

jpegIn his Lectures on Calvinism, Abraham Kuyper argues against the view that “the only object of life was to merit heaven and to enjoy as much of the world as the Church considered to be consistent with this main end.”  This view fails to recognize that “Christianity, besides its yearning for eternal salvation, has to perform on earth, by divine commission, a grand task with regard to the cosmos.”

More specifically, “life on earth were ever destined to merit the blessedness of heaven.”  Thus, “Calvinism called Christendom back to the order of creation: ‘Replenish the earth, subdue it and have dominion over everything that lives upon it.’”  Christian life remains a pilgrimage, to be sure.  But “the Calvinist became a pilgrim, who, while on his way to our eternal home, has yet to perform on earth an important task.”  What is that task?  “The cosmos, in all the wealth of the kingdom of nature, was spread out before, under, and above man,” and this “entire limitless field had to be worked” (emphasis mine) so that they all may “flourish,” be it “agriculture and industry, commerce and navigation” or whatever else.

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