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Rooted & Grounded

The Church as Organism and Institution
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74 pages
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Originally presented by Abraham Kuyper as the Inaugural Sermon, delivered at the Nieuwe Kerk in Amsterdam in 1870, Rooted & Grounded is the Word of the Lord for the Christian church today. Christians know the Gospel must permeate every area of life organically, that every vocation is integral and not accidental to the missio Dei, as Steven Garber is fond of saying. This is what Kuyper means when he talks about the church being rooted in the organism of the Gospel. But Kuyper goes much further, reminding us that the church is 'First rooted, then grounded' in an institutional form with core doctrinal, liturgical, and office-bearing responsibilities that norm its vital organic life. Just as faith and life cannot be separated, so also the church as an organism and an organization cannot be separated. Too often, however, we hear from frustrated leaders in the faith and work movement the faulty advice to bypass pastors, church governing boards, and seminary classrooms and move directly to workplace ministry without hindrance or obstruction. Abraham Kuyper's robust ecclesiology discourages renewal movements from doing end runs around the church and seminary.


"Abraham Kuyper preached his sermon "Rooted and Grounded" at a time when the ground was shifting under the feet of the churches in the West. His sermon was, of course, not a comprehensive theological account, but he nonetheless provided in short compass an account of the church that answered the chief questions raised by modern society: What is the church? and What is its position in the emerging society?"

--From the introduction by John Halsey Wood Jr.

About Abraham Kuyper

Abraham Kuyper (1837-1920) is a significant figure in the history of the Netherlands and modern Protestant theology. A prolific intellectual, he founded a political party and a university, and served as the prime minister of the Netherlands (1901-1905). His enduring passion was to develop a theology for the general public and was seen in his extensive elaboration of the doctrine of common grace.

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