Do the writings of a 19th century Dutch politician still hold relevance in the 21st century? A Hamilton campus ministry certainly believes so.
Each year, the Christian Reformed campus ministry at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, examines Abraham Kuyper’s teachings at its annual “All Things Abraham Kuyper: Loving Every Square Inch” speaker series.
The banquet and public address held last week featured Richard Mouw of Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif.
The Kuyper series began five years ago when the campus ministry received a grant from VOX Charities of the Netherlands. The series is also supported by Classis Hamilton. Mouw was president at Fuller from 1993 to 2013 and received the Abraham Kuyper Prize for Excellence in Reformed Theology and Public Life. Mouw wrote Abraham Kuyper: A Short and Personal Introduction in 2011.
According to Mouw, there is increasing interest to Kuyper’s teachings outside of the Dutch Calvinist community.
Outlining several relevant principles found in Kuyper’s writings, Mouw stressed that God delights in all of creation. Like a child delights in a simple game, life’s repetitive nature does not tire God. Quoting Kuyper, Mouw stated “there is not a square inch” in all of creation where God does not have sovereign rule. As Christians, we need to “recognize the face of God in every moment and place,” having “confidence that the embrace we feel in worship is that of the One holding this all together,” he said.
Mouw’s writings have great importance for McMaster/Mohawk campus chaplain Michael Fallon: “These are books that have shaped me to lead in this ministry. Mouw wrestles with a lot of issues that affect us, and his writing is intellectually and emotionally honest.”
As part of their Bible study, McMaster students explored Mouw’s book Praying at Burger King and enjoyed the opportunity to hear him speak in person. Fourth-year McMaster student Sarah Krygsman found Mouw’s lecture “insightful and relevant,” particularly the concept that God delights in all aspects of our lives, even schoolwork, desiring us “do it again” for his glory.