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Christian Hospitality and Muslim Immigration in an Age of Fear

4.55  ·  Rating details ·  87 ratings  ·  26 reviews
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
Paperback, 352 pages
Published January 25th 2018 by Eerdmans
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D.L. Mayfield
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
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 ...more
Jordan Ballor
Feb 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
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." ...more
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 ...more
Heath Salzman
May 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
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
Robert McDonald
May 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
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 ...more
Chris Schutte
Apr 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
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. ...more
Scott Hunt
Jun 19, 2021 rated it really liked it
This is a challenging book. While I certainly don’t agree with everything in it (nor do I suspect the author expected readers to), it certainly provides complex insight. I also appreciate bringing to light a side of Abraham Kuyper that I’ve never heard of before.
Jae H Kim
Jul 21, 2021 rated it it was amazing
An excellent exploration of Kuyperian Christian pluralism
Peter Schindler
Nov 13, 2017 rated it liked it
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 ...more
Mandy DeOrnellas
Nov 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
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.
Aug 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
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! ...more
Dec 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
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
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 ...more
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
Christopher Lim
Oct 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
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 ...more
Dec 16, 2018 rated it liked it
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
Jordan J. Andlovec
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
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 ...more
Jason Pamblanco
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
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.
May 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
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.
Ivan Lau
Mar 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing
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.
Mar 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
A must read for all evangelicals and those skeptical that evangelical thought can detach itself from American civil religion.
Dec 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Erik Bonkovsky
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
The chapter of Pluralism and Christ was outstanding.
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
Sep 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very challenging. I need time to process, but totally engaging and well argued.
Jenna Thompson
rated it really liked it
Dec 21, 2020
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Feb 11, 2018
Ying Xuan
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Jun 11, 2019
Matthew J. Slisher
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Dec 13, 2019
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“Admitting that one’s life rested on some sort of faith was, in Kuyper’s mind, simply a matter of intellectual honesty. To deny faith’s role, to claim pure objectivity and rationality, was a “culpable blindfolding” of the self (Encyclopedia, 152). Moderns who declared that they could transcend the superstitions of faith and ground their thought “exclusively upon the action of the senses” were, according to Kuyper, “entirely mistaken, and allow themselves a leap to which they have no right” (Encyclopedia, 132). Every system of human thought pivoted on some deep fulcrum,” 0 likes
“For Kuyper, ideological hegemony was not merely irrational—it was blasphemous. For, Kuyper declared, whenever religious freedom is crushed, “God’s name” is “robbed of its splendor.”28” 0 likes
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