Synopses & Reviews
Wilberforce's classic work is concerned with convincing those who call themselves Christians to pursue the real nature and principles of the religion which they profess. Christianity is not a mere morality, to be held in private. Christianity is revelation from God, bringing new rights and correspondent duties. It is an entire way of life that requires diligence and study and that should affecct every aspect of the Christian's public and private life. Completely retypeset with an index, explanatory notes, scripture references and other helps.
This book is concerned with convincing those who call themselves Christans to pursue "the real nature and principles of the religion which they profess.
The current fascination with "virtue" is attested by the public's consumption of books such as William Bennett's Book of Virtues and Gertrude Himmelfarb's The Demoralization of Society. But the issue of virtues and public life has been around much longer. In fact, in the late 1700s William Wilberforce, a renowned British statesman and counsel to Prime Minister William Pitt, penned what would become one of the most eloquent statements concerning Christian civil responsibility ever written. Its influence extended across the Atlantic and into the following centuries. Among his many contributions to society, Wilberforce is best known for his efforts on behalf of slaves throughout the world, and in a very real sense he laid the ground work for the abolition of slavery in the United States. This annotated critical reissue of the first edition of Wilberforce's most influential work pays tribute to his legacy and seeks to restore Wilberforce to his rightful place in the cultural memory of the community worldwide. Kevin Belmonte not only preserves for us the text of this literary and cultural gem but he also provides the sources behind Wilberforce's numerous quotations from Latin, literature, and Scripture. An introduction by Charles Colson mirrors the ongoing relevance of Wilberforce's notion of Christian social responsibility.