Christianity & Contemporary Politics: The Conditions and Possibilities of Faithful Witness

Luke Bretherton

Relations between religious and political spheres continue to stir passionate debates on both sides of the Atlantic. Through a combination of theological reflection and empirical case studies, Bretherton succeeds in offering timely and invaluable insights into these crucial issues facing 21st century societies. 

The book explores the relationship between Christianity and contemporary politics through case studies of faith-based organizations, Christian political activism and welfare provision in the West; these case studies assess initiatives including community organizing, fair trade, and the sanctuary movement. It offers an insightful, informative account of how Christians can engage politically in a multi-faith, liberal democracy and integrates debates in political theology with inter-disciplinary analysis of policy and practice regarding religious social, political and economic engagement in the USA, UK, and continental Europe. Bretherton not only reveals how Christians can help prevent the subversion of the church—and even of politics itself—by legal, bureaucratic, and market mechanisms, rather than advocating withdrawal or assimilation and he engages with the intricacies of contemporary politics whilst integrating systematic and historical theological reflection on political and economic life.