17 Nov

Robert Kraynak on rethinking the distinction between heavenly and earthly authorities

Category: Fresh Tracks
Published: 11/17/16

MHA uncut: Archives

In this special release from our archives, political science professor, Robert P. Kraynak, argues that modern Christians too easily subscribe to a “gospel of democracy,” which mandates that liberal democracy is the best and only legitimate form of government. Kraynak accounts for this preference in part due to a new interpretation of the Christian notion of human dignity that is influenced heavily by modern notions of social autonomy and natural rights. While it is true that because humans image God, they have dignity, “to what extent,” asks Kraynak, “does the Christian conception of human dignity imply or entail our modern concept of human rights?” Instead, Kraynak wants to challenge Western Christians to rethink their presuppositions about freedom and authority and to recover an Augustinian understanding of government that maintains a distinct, but not separate, relationship between temporal and eternal authorities.

Login now to hear this extended conversation from Volume 54.

Part II of this release features an archive interview from Volume 15 of the Journal with ethicist Jean Bethke Elshtain on the dangers that cynicism poses to democracy.

(MHA uncut is available to current subscribers for a limited time and is a feature of the Fresh Tracks section in Addenda. MHA uncut previews unedited interviews of guests who will later appear in the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal.)

Other releases of MHA uncut include: