Jordan J. Ballor (Dr. theol., University of Zurich; Ph.D., Calvin Theological Seminary) is a senior research fellow and director of publishing at the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion & Liberty. He is also a postdoctoral researcher in theology and economics at the VU University Amsterdam as part of the "What Good Markets Are Good For" project. He is author of Get Your Hands Dirty: Essays on Christian Social Thought (and Action) (Wipf & Stock, 2013), Covenant, Causality, and Law: A Study in the Theology of Wolfgang Musculus (Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2012) and Ecumenical Babel: Confusing Economic Ideology and the Church's Social Witness (Christian's Library Press, 2010), as well as editor of numerous works, including Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology. Jordan is also associate director of the Junius Institute for Digital Reformation Research at Calvin Theological Seminary.

Posts by Jordan J. Ballor

Love as a tesseract

Earlier this week at Public Discourse I wrote an essay on the dangers of individualism and collectivism, illustrated with literary samples from C.S. Lewis and Madeleine L’Engle respectively. I drew the image of an individualist hell from Lewis’ The Great Divorce, citing Napoleon as an eternal exile, not on Elba or Saint Helena but into everlasting perdition. Continue Reading...

The challenges of Islam and pluralism

Last week I had an essay exploring Abraham Kuyper’s interactions with Islam, focused particularly on his tour around the Mediterranean Sea in the early years of the twentieth century. As I argue, Throughout his travels, Kuyper was confronted by the diversity, vitality, and comprehensiveness of the Islamic faith. Continue Reading...

Black Panther has something important to offer

In this week’s Acton Commentary I examine the dynamics of marginalization and solidarity in the blockbuster phenomenon Black Panther. As so many commentators have suggested, there’s a lot to this film, and one of the important things it has to offer is a valuable perspective on the underlying unity amidst diversity in humanity. Continue Reading...

Natural law and Protestantism revisited

One of the more pervasive myths surrounding the Protestant reformations is that they represented a wholesale rupture with the moral traditions that preceded, particularly with respect to natural law. In an influential recent study, for instance, Brad S. Continue Reading...

Isolationism and internationalism in Black Panther

I finally got around to seeing Black Panther last night, and my early reaction echoes so much of the overwhelmingly positive response to the film. As so many superhero tales do, Black Panther weaves together complex ideas within the often deceptively fantastical trappings of science fiction and fantasy. Continue Reading...

Video: Book Discussion on Kuyper and Islam

We’ve got video available of last week’s book launch discussion about Abraham Kuyper’s travels around the Mediterranean Sea. A portion of his travel record has been published as On Islam as part of the Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology. Continue Reading...

Around the Old World-Sea

Later today we’re having a book launch discussion about the latest volume in the Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology, On Islam. This book is a selection from a travel narrative Kuyper published after he voyaged around the Mediterranean Sea in 1905-1906. Continue Reading...

Kuyper on Christians’ twofold citizenship

In 1887, Abraham Kuyper helped lead a secession from the mainline Reformed church in the Netherlands. A few months later at the Free University in Amsterdam, Kuyper delivered a speech entitled “Twofold Fatherland,” in which he describes the earthly and heavenly citizenship of Christians, and how these realities impact our understanding of our responsibility and identity in this world. Continue Reading...

The ‘end’ of work

In the Q&A part of a session I led at last month’s Acton University on Abraham Kuyper and Leo XIII (based on this recent volume), I was asked about specific areas where the two figures have something concrete to contribute today. Continue Reading...

Fusionism and Western Civ

Pope Leo XIII, writing in the midst of social crisis at the end of the nineteenth century, wisely observed: “When a society is perishing, the wholesome advice to give to those who would restore it is to call it to the principles from which it sprang.” For the American experiment in ordered liberty, this means in large part going back to the Anglo-American tradition represented by Adam Smith and Edmund Burke. Continue Reading...