Monday, 22 August 2011
Let Christ be King by L. Praamsma
Reflection on the Life and Times of Abraham Kuyper
Paideia Press, St Catherine's Ont., 1985
Louis Praamsma (1910-1984), a church historian, moved from The Netherlands to Canada in 1910. His doctorate from the Free University was on 'Abraham Kuyper as Church Historian'. This book is a popular level biography of Kuyper. This book is perhaps a little less accessible than Vanden Berg's biography, but it provides an excellent complement to Vanden Berg.
Both volumes deal well with the education and political issues Kuyper struggled with, but Praamsma provides more detail on the church reforms Kuyper was involved with. He also concentrates more on the religious and cultural background - the first three chapters provide an excellent summary, particularly for those unfamiliar with Dutch history and culture.
Praamsma is much more refereneced (10 pages of endnotes) than Vanden Berg. Both are 'friends of Kuyper' and so are largely uncritical. Though Praamsma does highlight some of the issues others had with Kuyper, he also quotes more from Kuyper.
If you have time read both - if time is at a premium go for Praamsma.
Unfortunately, the book is out of print but is available as a pdf here.
1. The Spirit of the Nineteenth Century
2. Trial and Error: Theology of the Time
3. The Dutch Situation
4. The Young Kuyper
5. Conversion in the Parsonage
6. Disturber of the Peace
7. A Small Note
8. A Great Enterprise
9. Reformer of the Church
10. The Salt of the Earth: Kuyper and the Social Problem
11. Professor Kuyper
12. In the New World
13. The Two Graces
14. Christ Our King
15. On the Sidelines
16. Finishing Touches