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An alternative, uniquely Christian response to the growing global challenges of deep religious difference In the last fifty years, millions of Muslims have migrated to Europe and North America. Their arrival has ignited a series of fierce public debates on both sides of the Atlantic about religious freedom and tolerance, terrorism and security, gender and race, and much mor An alternative, uniquely Christian response to the growing global challenges of deep religious difference In the last fifty years, millions of Muslims have migrated to Europe and North America. Their arrival has ignited a series of fierce public debates on both sides of the Atlantic about religious freedom and tolerance, terrorism and security, gender and race, and much more. How can Christians best respond to this situation? In this book theologian and ethicist Matthew Kaemingk offers a thought-provoking Christian perspective on the growing debates over Muslim presence in the West. Rejecting both fearful nationalism and romantic multiculturalism, Kaemingk makes the case for a third way—a Christian pluralism that is committed to both the historic Christian faith and the public rights, dignity, and freedom of Islam. 


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An alternative, uniquely Christian response to the growing global challenges of deep religious difference In the last fifty years, millions of Muslims have migrated to Europe and North America. Their arrival has ignited a series of fierce public debates on both sides of the Atlantic about religious freedom and tolerance, terrorism and security, gender and race, and much mor An alternative, uniquely Christian response to the growing global challenges of deep religious difference In the last fifty years, millions of Muslims have migrated to Europe and North America. Their arrival has ignited a series of fierce public debates on both sides of the Atlantic about religious freedom and tolerance, terrorism and security, gender and race, and much more. How can Christians best respond to this situation? In this book theologian and ethicist Matthew Kaemingk offers a thought-provoking Christian perspective on the growing debates over Muslim presence in the West. Rejecting both fearful nationalism and romantic multiculturalism, Kaemingk makes the case for a third way—a Christian pluralism that is committed to both the historic Christian faith and the public rights, dignity, and freedom of Islam. 

30 review for Christian Hospitality and Muslim Immigration in an Age of Fear

  1. 5 out of 5

    D.L. Mayfield

    This book is a challenging read (definitely not a light read about hospitality!) The deep dive into politics, history, and theology brought up so many questions that I had never considered before. As someone who more fits into the "liberalism" category of thought (living and working within Muslim immigrant communities in the US) this book challenged me to think broader and more deeply of what it means to follow Christ in these inhospitable political times. In the end, this is a book making the c This book is a challenging read (definitely not a light read about hospitality!) The deep dive into politics, history, and theology brought up so many questions that I had never considered before. As someone who more fits into the "liberalism" category of thought (living and working within Muslim immigrant communities in the US) this book challenged me to think broader and more deeply of what it means to follow Christ in these inhospitable political times. In the end, this is a book making the case for Christian pluralism, a concept I wish was talked about more in this nationalistic moment. For my own neighborhood, I was grateful especially for the practical tips near the end of the book. I recommend this to anyone (conservative or liberal) who wants to have their thinking expanded about how a Christian can posture themselves in a self-sacrificial way in a pluralistic world.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jordan Ballor

    My endorsement: "In this compelling work Matthew Kaemingk asks what Amsterdam has to do with Mecca, and the answers he finds turn out to have implications the world over. . . . The charity and clarity on display here will challenge Christians to think more deeply, and to act more responsibly, in response to the call to live peacefully and faithfully with Muslim neighbors." My endorsement: "In this compelling work Matthew Kaemingk asks what Amsterdam has to do with Mecca, and the answers he finds turn out to have implications the world over. . . . The charity and clarity on display here will challenge Christians to think more deeply, and to act more responsibly, in response to the call to live peacefully and faithfully with Muslim neighbors."

  3. 5 out of 5

    Mark Nenadov

    This is a superb book for Christians who wish to think through and live out their faith in regard to their relationship with Muslim neighbours. This is a timely subject, given the current political and social climate. It is written with clarity, compassion, and conviction. It is concerned with both careful thinking through our theories and practical application. Kaemingk uses the Netherlands as a case study of two extremes and applies Kuyperian thought to attempt to forge a "third way", rejectin This is a superb book for Christians who wish to think through and live out their faith in regard to their relationship with Muslim neighbours. This is a timely subject, given the current political and social climate. It is written with clarity, compassion, and conviction. It is concerned with both careful thinking through our theories and practical application. Kaemingk uses the Netherlands as a case study of two extremes and applies Kuyperian thought to attempt to forge a "third way", rejecting both "fearful nationalism" and "romantic multiculturalism". Kaemingk's book is broader than the title might lead one to believe, and it is neither exclusively or primarily about hospitality or immigration. Much of the content is generally applicable to thinking through pluralism, religious liberty, and living charitably towards any people with whom we differ. It serves as a powerful volley against both "religious" and "secular" hedgemony and contains convincing arguments for a healthy form of political and social pluralism. This book covers an impressive amount of ground. Besides being deeply indebted to Kuyper's thinking, Kaemingk frequently refers to Dutch theologians such as Herman Bavinck and Klaas Schilder. There is some heavy duty theological reflection, especially in regard to how Christ's life and death relates to the way relate to others. That said, it should not be construed as a narrowly "theological" book. Kaemingk attempts to think through these issues holistically and broadly--seeking to foster the re-examination of our thought and practice. I hope this book will challenge many Christians to be dissatisfied with the simplistic or reductionistic answers. I hope it challenges them to re-examine their interaction (or lack thereof) with their Muslim neighbours and seek to constructively improve it. I hope it challenges us all to move beyond crude knee-jerk reactions and move into more nuanced and careful thinking about how to deal with neighbours with whom we differ in significant ways. Sometimes this road seems like a long, hard road--but I believe this book is a good start in the right direction.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Heath Salzman

    You must read this book. When I first purchased it in January, I suggested that this volume may prove to be the most important book of 2018. Now that I have finished it, I believe that it is one of the more important theological contributions of this generation. Kaemingk writes with a clarity and conciseness that is hard to find, which allows him to cover a lot of ground in these 300 pages. This volume treats such diverse disciplines as sociology, anthropology, political theology, soteriology, et You must read this book. When I first purchased it in January, I suggested that this volume may prove to be the most important book of 2018. Now that I have finished it, I believe that it is one of the more important theological contributions of this generation. Kaemingk writes with a clarity and conciseness that is hard to find, which allows him to cover a lot of ground in these 300 pages. This volume treats such diverse disciplines as sociology, anthropology, political theology, soteriology, ethics, and Christian mission, among others. While the focus of the book is the question of Muslim immigration and an appropriate Christian response, it has broader application to a variety of questions pressing the American Evangelical today. Again, at the risk of sounding over-the-top, I believe this is a crucially important volume to read. Evangelicals need to rethink our position and engagement in American society. This volume offers a thoroughly biblical and deeply thoughtful path for us to follow. My hat is off to Dr. Kaemingk.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Robert McDonald

    This was a meaty (/perhaps a bit long) addressing of the topic. Much of the what the author said and cited gave me a lot to think about. He unflinchingly called out failures on both sides of the political aisle, was unapologetic of his faith (and the Islamic faith), and clearly wrote this volume from a place of care. Recommended for those who are dissatisfied with the current narrative and want to build truly more tolerant and hospitable cities and homes toward people whose differences from your This was a meaty (/perhaps a bit long) addressing of the topic. Much of the what the author said and cited gave me a lot to think about. He unflinchingly called out failures on both sides of the political aisle, was unapologetic of his faith (and the Islamic faith), and clearly wrote this volume from a place of care. Recommended for those who are dissatisfied with the current narrative and want to build truly more tolerant and hospitable cities and homes toward people whose differences from your own may run deep.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Chris Schutte

    A helpful and challenging look at modern Dutch attitudes toward Muslim immigration, a historical explanation and evaluation of Abraham Kuyper's Christian Pluralism, and, finally, a proposal for how American Evangelicals might adopt a robust pluralism that allows for a Christo-centric practice of hospitality to govern our engagement with our Muslim neighbors. A deeply rewarding and challenging book that I hope gets read widely and applied broadly. A helpful and challenging look at modern Dutch attitudes toward Muslim immigration, a historical explanation and evaluation of Abraham Kuyper's Christian Pluralism, and, finally, a proposal for how American Evangelicals might adopt a robust pluralism that allows for a Christo-centric practice of hospitality to govern our engagement with our Muslim neighbors. A deeply rewarding and challenging book that I hope gets read widely and applied broadly.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Peter Schindler

    I found this book to be an eye opening read for a number of reasons. Coming from a relatively conservative Catholic background, I was challenged by the author's openness regarding the assimilation of Muslims into Western society. I felt that the author made some fair arguments for Christians and how we can live our faith in this scenario. I found myself swayed by some of his arguments, yet I imagined the true Christian fading in and out of a fog of liberal naivety as he/she attempts to reconcile I found this book to be an eye opening read for a number of reasons. Coming from a relatively conservative Catholic background, I was challenged by the author's openness regarding the assimilation of Muslims into Western society. I felt that the author made some fair arguments for Christians and how we can live our faith in this scenario. I found myself swayed by some of his arguments, yet I imagined the true Christian fading in and out of a fog of liberal naivety as he/she attempts to reconcile what the Lord asks of us in our treatment of "our neighbors". We don't do a great job of it in a homogeneous society, much less one where we feel threatened. In the end, I think that this book provides plenty of thought, but little change impact. Western views of Muslims coming to their societies are probably not much different than Muslim views of soldiers coming to their home lands. Neither can truly trust that the purpose of the visitors is pure. But thanks for the thought provoking utopian concept, and for the history lesson.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Mandy DeOrnellas

    Thank you net-galley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review. Living in a ethnically and religiously diverse are.a, I really enjoyed this book. In this day and age, we need to all come together and embrace eachothers beliefs, cultures and way of life. We need to have a little more understanding and tolerance for everyone. Maybe then the world would be a better place. I'd highly encourage everyone to read this. Thank you net-galley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review. Living in a ethnically and religiously diverse are.a, I really enjoyed this book. In this day and age, we need to all come together and embrace eachothers beliefs, cultures and way of life. We need to have a little more understanding and tolerance for everyone. Maybe then the world would be a better place. I'd highly encourage everyone to read this.

  9. 5 out of 5

    ISH

    Amazing book. Both theologically and practically very stong. So much food for thought. The questions surrounding the correct way to respond to our Muslim neighbours are both asked and answered in an honest and humble way. It's a must-read for pastors (and many parts for churchgoers as well) of churches in the Netherlands and the States (and other countries). Let us be humble, honest and hospitable! Amazing book. Both theologically and practically very stong. So much food for thought. The questions surrounding the correct way to respond to our Muslim neighbours are both asked and answered in an honest and humble way. It's a must-read for pastors (and many parts for churchgoers as well) of churches in the Netherlands and the States (and other countries). Let us be humble, honest and hospitable!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Peter

    Does this sound familiar to ears tuned to Abraham Kuyper? “There is not one ‘square inch’ in the entire public square where Christ’s model of hospitality does not have relevance and normativity.” Kaemingk tweaks Kuyper's slogan, acknowledging the crown of Christ and the political justice Christ demands, but he insists the cross of Christ, building on Calvin’s own hermeneutic, puts the hospitality of God for humankind as the primary frame for the Christian’s activity in the public square. This boo Does this sound familiar to ears tuned to Abraham Kuyper? “There is not one ‘square inch’ in the entire public square where Christ’s model of hospitality does not have relevance and normativity.” Kaemingk tweaks Kuyper's slogan, acknowledging the crown of Christ and the political justice Christ demands, but he insists the cross of Christ, building on Calvin’s own hermeneutic, puts the hospitality of God for humankind as the primary frame for the Christian’s activity in the public square. This book won an award of merit with Christianity Today in 2019 and Kaemingk himself was declared the 2019 Emerging Public Intellectual by Redeemer University. He is not only a theological descendent of Kuyper, but a disciple of Neo-Calvinist philosopher Richard Mouw. Kaemingk lives in Houston, where he is professor of ethics at Fuller Seminary Texas. Immigration has been a burning issue in the United States of late, and Texas is a state where the tensions are particularly hot. Social diversity has always been fundamental to the human situation, says Kaemingk, but religious difference is now much more deep, close and fast than in the past. In particular, he directs his attention to controversies around Muslim presence in Western states, and asks: “What do Christians need to faithfully respond to the growing presence of Islam in the West?” Echoing an early church father, he also asks: “What Does Mecca have to do with Amsterdam?” The latter question arises because Kaemingk believes Americans have much to learn from the Netherlands’ experience with Muslim immigrants. He explores some of the social history there, but at more length, some of the early 20th century theology that shaped some of the Dutch response to these “temporary guest workers” from Turkey that came to stay. This is a rich book, and there is much to unpack. I will narrow my focus to three parts—how he builds on Kuyper; that he offers a “third way” for a polarized world; and finally, his nuanced view of hospitality. First, Kaemingk does not simply describe a Kuyperian Christian pluralism, but he expands it, developing something much more fulsome and robust. He first echoes Kupyer, saying that due to sin, there will always be religious diversity on the planet. He then reminds the reader that it is Christ who is sovereign over all creation, not Christians. While this might sound threatening to those seeking to maintain some Christian political privilege, it can be a liberating thought: Christ rules over our inescapable diversity, so don’t fret about scrambling for the political upper hand. Kuyper, however, was weak in three areas that Kaemingk develops at length. For one, his Christology was focused on Christ the king, but needs a kaleidoscopic Christ who is also a teacher, healer, liberator, prophet, and friend. Under his rule, Christ does more than sit sovereignly on his throne: he shares wisdom, he binds wounds, and he offers nourishment. Secondly, Kamingk notes Kuyper emphasized worldview but did not elaborate on how Christian pluralists’ character would be formed for citizenship. Kaemingk fills this out by showing how worship and spiritual disciplines can shape church members for hospitality in the public square. Finally, while Kuyper emphasized political and legal action, Kaemingk gives examples from the Netherlands of sewing groups, coffee socials, medical aid, and a university that deliberately hires professors of religion who actually believe and practice what they teach. Christians must bring their pluralist ethic to all cultural spheres. Kaemingk stretches Kuyper wider because he sees the extremely limited polarized political options that confront Christians today. The liberal multicultural option he calls the “open door”—which is welcoming but fails to think beyond the threshold—failing to take the religious difference of immigrants seriously. The liberal worldview, with its political correctness and identity politics, doesn’t recognize itself as a worldview, and while its open to people that look different, it expects newcomers to think the same as them. But assimilation into modern categories is not a given for devout Muslims. The right-wing nationalist political option Kaemingk characterizes as the “high wall.” This perspective rightly seeks to preserve its cultural gifts and protect its citizens from harm but operates on the basis of fear, seeing Muslims through a “clash of civilizations” frame. Such xenophobia can only heighten tensions, especially if couched in racist rhetoric and the desire for a return to some past Christian supremacy. Kaemingk offers a third option beyond liberal romanticism of “open all doors” and right-wing antagonistic “put up the walls”: the Christian pluralist table. The table is an image that bookends Passion Week—from the Lord’s Supper to breakfast at the beach, post-resurrection. The table is a space of sharing and vulnerability. It requires a door to enter through, but also walls to shelter and cultivate a sense of home. Unlike the left, a table ethic counts the real costs of welcoming deep difference; unlike the right, it ventures to see the image of God in the stories of the stranger. While Kaemingk mostly sees Christ as the model for Christian hosting work, he also inadvertently betrays the possibility of role reversals: that Christians may also be guest, and that Christ may play in the Muslim immigrant’s fried legumes. He tells the story, for example, of a church planting group in Amsterdam that tried to draw Muslim immigrants into community by cooking for them. Understandably, the Dutch meals were hardly an enticing treat. Instead, immigrants started inviting the ostensible hosts for rich and spicy meals in their own homes. In a startling reversal, the hosts became guests, and a community started to form. Christ plays in thousands of places beyond Dutch Christian intentions, and maybe taking the more vulnerable position of guest creates openings for grace unavailable to a “host” mindset. In the weaker position of waiting, listening, and receiving, a delightful, attractive witness is born. One last gem from the book: Kaemingk insists that the research shows that communities like mosques help immigrants find support to grow into flourishing citizens. “Defend Muslim spaces” he maintains, because it is Muslims who are isolated from family and community who flounder and are especially susceptible to radicalization. Support your local mosque as part of your pluralistic, Christian hospitality. You might gather that this book does not explore Islamic history or theology, something important for hospitality to Muslims. But let me be bold about its value: it is tremendously timely, deeply rooted, ethically sound, and centred directly in Jesus Christ—both his cross and his crown.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Robert D. Cornwall

    We live in an age of fear, and no "group" instills greater fear in many communities, both in Europe and the United States than Muslims. Our President regularly lashes out against Muslims, and spoke of Muslim bans during his campaign and has pursued discriminatory policies since taking office. In Europe, there is growing discontent with the presence of Muslims, fearing that they are corrupting the culture. Pursuing policies of tolerance and openness led to a right-wing backlash, that has made its We live in an age of fear, and no "group" instills greater fear in many communities, both in Europe and the United States than Muslims. Our President regularly lashes out against Muslims, and spoke of Muslim bans during his campaign and has pursued discriminatory policies since taking office. In Europe, there is growing discontent with the presence of Muslims, fearing that they are corrupting the culture. Pursuing policies of tolerance and openness led to a right-wing backlash, that has made its presence felt not only in Europe but in the United States. For Christians, the question is one of approach. Should we or should we not be hospitable? What form should this hospitality take? Does it mean not seeking to convert Muslims? Or might that still be on the table? These are all good questions worth exploring. Matthew Kaemingk addresses some of these questions, but I must admit that this book is not what I expected. I'm not sure what I had expected, but in many ways this is an attempt to define a vision of Christian engagement with the public life, with Muslims as the test case. The focus is on the Neo-Calvinist/Kuyperian vision of Christian pluralism. Much of the book focuses on developing that vision of Christian life. In addition, except for the last seventy pages or so, the focus is not on Christian-Muslim interaction in the United States, but in the Netherlands. Perhaps my confusion stems from the author's relationship to Fuller Theological Seminary. He seemed to take positions more conservative than I expected of a Fuller professor. Perhaps that has more to do with me than with him. Nonetheless the book isn't what I expected. There is good information here. It is good to be reminded that in a small country like Holland, that has a significant Muslim population, that can have cultural implications not present in the United States. The "liberal" response to this impact may not have made matters worse, provoking right-wing resistance and even violence toward Muslims. The book is divided into four parts. Part 1 is titled Mecca and Amsterdam: A Case Study." In this section of the book the author explores the failure of multiculturalism (liberalism) in Holland to deal with the impact of a growing Muslim population. The idea that all religions are the same failed to recognize the real differences and the impact of those differences. He also explores attempts on both left and right to marginalize Muslims. There is an "interlude" in which he raises the question of whether Christians should defend Islam." His argument is that "Christianity is capable of fervently defending those with whom it disagrees. It can speak out on behalf of deep difference" (p. 73). It's clear to me that Kaemingk believes that the differences are significant. I don't remember him ever really suggesting areas of commonality between Muslims and Christians. This seemed odd to me. Parts 2 and 3, forming a significant portion of the book focus on providing a history of and defense of this idea of Christian pluralism as understood by Abraham Kuyper. Having recently read a number of books that argue for this position, I already had formed a predisposition toward this Neo-Calvinist position that seems to me to argue for creating religiously segregated systems, including educational ones. While I agree that communities, especially minority communities need places to gather and form their identities, I'm not sure I buy this vision. For the most part Islam disappears from the discussion in these two sections. Finally, in part four, Kaemingk comes to America. His focus is on American evangelicals and their understanding of Islam, which to be nice is largely phobic. He seeks to argue for Christians to show hospitality by standing in solidarity with Muslims, even if they disagree strongly with Islamic beliefs. For my own part, I wish that he had focused his attention less on developing his Christian Pluralism and more on Christian responses to Islam. There is another piece of the book that I found troubling. This idea that Christians are stuck between Mecca (a somewhat scary Islam, which he seems to believe does pose a threat to Western civilization--my reading) and Amsterdam (liberalism, which he finds, in my reading rather detestable). I was never sure who the liberals were, though they either appear to be securalists or Christians who gave into the culture. Now, I don't know the cultural landscape in Holland. I know it is rather secular, as is true elsewhere in Europe, but I found the critique off-putting. Perhaps that's because I am not a conservative, and haven't been since at least my years at Fuller, which significantly influenced my journey. Ultimately, I think I will go elsewhere for my preparation for engaging Muslims. But for some, this might be a starting point to move beyond fear to solidarity with religious minorities. After all, even liberal Christianity is a minority position within American culture!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Dean Summers

    After the fall of the Soviet Union, America cast about for a new archenemy to replace our old dance partner, Communism. We settled on Islam. It helped to narrow the field for Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini to call us “the Great Satan.” And, then, 9/11 confirmed our worst fears. Now, anything that might once have passed for simple Christian hospitality to Muslim neighbors, visitors, and refugees, has become an act of courageous faith in the face of a smoldering fear of strangers—persistently inflamed t After the fall of the Soviet Union, America cast about for a new archenemy to replace our old dance partner, Communism. We settled on Islam. It helped to narrow the field for Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini to call us “the Great Satan.” And, then, 9/11 confirmed our worst fears. Now, anything that might once have passed for simple Christian hospitality to Muslim neighbors, visitors, and refugees, has become an act of courageous faith in the face of a smoldering fear of strangers—persistently inflamed to racial hatred by celebrity preachers and pundits, and by cynical, opportunistic politicians. As a dire warning, the purveyors of fear direct our attention to the situation in Europe, and especially to the crisis in the Netherlands. So, Matthew Kaemingk (pronounced “KAY-mink”) takes a close, long, hard look at the Netherlands. He makes some important and surprising discoveries. And he comes away with a political strategy for American Christians that is none other than a purposeful, collective and coordinated practice of living day-to-day into the spirit of Christ Jesus—in our homes and in the marketplace, in our churches and in the public square. Kaemingk calls his strategy “Christian Pluralism” after the Dutch political movement founded in the early years of the Twentieth Century by Abraham Kuyper (rhymes with “piper”). Kaemingk showcases the politics of Abraham Kuyper as a politics informed by the teachings of Jesus. Then, in dialog with a cadre of Reformed scholars, he moves beyond Kuyper, even deeper into the teachings of Jesus. He does so in order to commend Christian Pluralism to American Christians, calling us to become Christian Pluralists. But is Kaemingk seriously proposing that a bygone, foreign, religion-infused, political movement might be revived and refitted for America in the Twenty-First Century? I don’t think so. I think he’s up to something much more audacious. When he refers to “Christian Pluralism,” read “Christianity.” When he refers to “Christian Pluralists,” read “Christians.” It then becomes clear that Kaemingk is advocating nothing less than a Christianity that is true to Christ. Yes, audacious. Radical. Subversive. It could lead to hospitality toward our Muslim neighbors! I’m 100% in favor of a Christianity that is true to Christ. So I am hoping with Matthew Kaemingk that his book will be widely read by Christians—and also by the general public, reading, as it were, over our shoulders.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Christopher Lim

    This book wasn't what I expected and that's a good thing. I thought it was going to be a topical exploration of hospitality and immigration from a Christian perspective. Instead I got a healthy dose of Kuyperian pluralist theology considered in it's original context, critiqued, extended and applied to the fierce challenges of our modern day in both large and small ways. I loved the deconstruction of the left and right wing voices of our day as well as the beautiful depiction of the expansiveness This book wasn't what I expected and that's a good thing. I thought it was going to be a topical exploration of hospitality and immigration from a Christian perspective. Instead I got a healthy dose of Kuyperian pluralist theology considered in it's original context, critiqued, extended and applied to the fierce challenges of our modern day in both large and small ways. I loved the deconstruction of the left and right wing voices of our day as well as the beautiful depiction of the expansiveness of Christ's hospitality and kaleidoscopic roles in relation to all humanity. I think the significance of some of the practical examples was sometimes challenging to grasp and at the end of the day everyone must wrestle with how to live out their theology. For example, what does it look like to create and run businesses from a Christian pluralist mindset? I guess that's my homework :). After reading the book, I find myself meditating more deeply on the meaning of hospitality and wrestling with the implications of division/difference not as a problem to be solved, but under Christ something to create space for in order to form true friendships with others.

  14. 5 out of 5

    John

    Matthew Kaemingk uses The Netherlands as a case study for what goes wrong -- and what could go right -- in national policies of non-Muslim countries toward Muslim immigrants and the attitudes of Christians toward the same. He repeatedly frames his study as a clash between Mecca and Amsterdam and demonstrates ample evidence that the case study is apt. The reader of "Christian Hospitality" will have to have a high tolerance for theological language. In much of the book, I found myself lost in the t Matthew Kaemingk uses The Netherlands as a case study for what goes wrong -- and what could go right -- in national policies of non-Muslim countries toward Muslim immigrants and the attitudes of Christians toward the same. He repeatedly frames his study as a clash between Mecca and Amsterdam and demonstrates ample evidence that the case study is apt. The reader of "Christian Hospitality" will have to have a high tolerance for theological language. In much of the book, I found myself lost in the theological weeds. Suddenly, in chapter 8 of part 3, "Pluralism and Action," he drops the theological language almost entirely and offers some remarkable vignettes of Christian groups in The Netherlands that went against the grain in their response to Muslim immigrants. The section of that chapter subtitled "Micro-Politics and Coffee," about how an extremely traditional Calvinist church responded when a Muslim immigrant literally knocked on their door, made the whole book for me.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jordan J. Andlovec

    I read this book much slower than usual, not because it is incredibly dense (although it is rich) but because it was real. The Kuyperian tradition can be dangerous in the abstract (think for example Chuck Colson and "worldview studies") but where it really shines is in specific and concrete issues, like Muslim immigration. Matthew Kaemingk does a great service to us all in the threading the needle here, as this book shines among a sea of both needlessly inflammatory and downright boring books on I read this book much slower than usual, not because it is incredibly dense (although it is rich) but because it was real. The Kuyperian tradition can be dangerous in the abstract (think for example Chuck Colson and "worldview studies") but where it really shines is in specific and concrete issues, like Muslim immigration. Matthew Kaemingk does a great service to us all in the threading the needle here, as this book shines among a sea of both needlessly inflammatory and downright boring books on political theology. As Jamie Smith says in the foreword, this really is a "singular book" and the first one I would grab if someone was interested in Abraham Kuyper or political theology more generally. This was by far the best book I read in 2018, and I'm going to be buying many copies of it to give out.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jason Pamblanco

    This book challenged me to think about “pluralism” in the Kuyperian sense... A strange combination of reformed thought and multicultural democratic politics stirred up and served at a table with walls and open doors. (Read the epilogue). My rating is provisional - I need more time to think on this book and chew on it, but for the fact that it is making me think, it gets a 4star review for now. I’d love to dialogue about this book with other Christians.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Taylor

    An enriching and challenging work of public theology, Kaemingk (channeling Kuyper among others) illumines how American Christians might eschew the politics of the Left and Right and embrace a “third way” following the example of Christ Himself.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Ivan Lau

    Wonderful work on a Christian conception of pluralism that is theologically orthodox and how this applies to how Christians are to approach our Muslim neighbors.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Steven

    A must read for all evangelicals and those skeptical that evangelical thought can detach itself from American civil religion.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Zach

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Excellent treatment of the topic of Christian hospitality as it relates to the complex mess of inter-religious dialog (particularly Islam) these days.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Erik Bonkovsky

    The chapter of Pluralism and Christ was outstanding.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    Very challenging. I need time to process, but totally engaging and well argued.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Guy Austin

    "Love them as yourself, for you yourselves were foreigners in Egypt." Leviticus 19:34 The quote above is on the opening page. The title grabbed my attention. The image on the cover did as well. The author, theologian and ethicist Matthew Kaemingk, takes us with him on a deep dive. A historical look back at the attempts, political and non-political, of reconciling Religious differences in Amsterdam the past 100 years or more. He looks at each generation of thought. The countries unending attempts "Love them as yourself, for you yourselves were foreigners in Egypt." Leviticus 19:34 The quote above is on the opening page. The title grabbed my attention. The image on the cover did as well. The author, theologian and ethicist Matthew Kaemingk, takes us with him on a deep dive. A historical look back at the attempts, political and non-political, of reconciling Religious differences in Amsterdam the past 100 years or more. He looks at each generation of thought. The countries unending attempts to bridge society and soften the edges of religious views with Multiculturalism and Nationalism of a diverse public within the country and the "public square." Ultimately delivering his own thoughts, "A third way," towards a Christian Pluralism and the rights and freedoms of Muslims as well. Kaemingk does a good job, perhaps a bit heavy, in detailing the history of Amsterdam's struggles with each pillar of both Multiculturalism and Nationalism that seemed to have failed them. He explains the strength and weakness within each viewpoint. His has extensive notes so detailed, he would have served the reader better by stitching them into the writing directly. Much of the reading was labored through. It was good information and welcomed. It is just not inspiring writing. Kaemingk does offer a pretty even-handed look into these policies and delivers a thorough lesson on each. He discusses his purpose: "The book is written for two groups of people. First, It is written for Christians who sense a deep need for an alternative response to Islam that begins and ends with a Christian conviction - not the simplistic ideologies of the right and left. Second, This book is written for non-Christians who are interested in peering over the religious fence, as it were, and exploring how some Christians are attempting to live peacefully and faithfully in an increasingly diverse, fragmented, and fear-driven world." - Matthew Kaemingk, Christian Hospitality and Muslim Immigration is an Age of Fear This writing is rich with history and context. Matthew Kaemingk studied and lived in Amsterdam for some time and interviewed many people to come to his conclusions. In the end he delivers his "Third way" quickly and concisely. My fear is that many will be lost trying to get there, both Christian and non-Christian. The author himself acknowledges this. He also is not looking to solve the differences of the two faiths. His Pluralism is used to detail a way toward faithfully responding to those differences and finding a path to living alongside our neighbors without the fear that is rained down on society today. Since it is pretty clear that the Nationalism response of "High Walls" nor the Liberal approach of "Open Door" policies are not working. Reading his approach towards a solution was refreshing. It was a tough read for me and takes some commitment to stay with him through to the end. The style, more academic, may not be pleasing but the information is worthwhile. I would like to thank the Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company and Matthew Kaemingk  for the opportunity to read this work through NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jenna Thompson

  25. 4 out of 5

    Stephen

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ying Xuan

  27. 5 out of 5

    Matthew J. Slisher

  28. 4 out of 5

    NesH

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lara

  30. 4 out of 5

    Steve

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