Slaying Leviathan: Limited Government and Resistance in the Christian Tradition


Leviathan is rising again, and the first weapon we must recover is the longstanding Christian tradition of resisting governmental overreach. Our bloated bureaucratic state would have been unrecognizable to the Founders, and our acquiescence to its encroachments on liberty would have infuriated them. But here is the point: our Leviathan would not have surprised them. They were well acquainted with the tendency of governments to turn tyrannical: “Eternal vigilance is the price we pay for liberty.”

In Slaying Leviathan, historian Glenn S. Sunshine surveys some of the stories and key elements of Christian political thought from Augustine to the Declaration of Independence. Specifically, the book introduces theories of limited government that were synthesized into a coherent political philosophy by John Locke. Locke, of course, influenced the American founders and was, like us, fighting against the spirit of Leviathan in his day. But his is only one of the many stories in this book.

Watch an interview with the author here.

About the author: Dr. Glenn S. Sunshine is Professor of History at Central Connecticut State University and a Senior Fellow at the Colson Center for Christian Worldview. An award-winning author, Glenn has published books, articles and book chapters on history, theology, and culture, online and on both sides of the Atlantic. His book Why You Think the Way You Do: The Story of Western Worldviews from Rome to Home (Zondervan, 2009) received the 2006 Acton Institute Book Grant.

Paperback, 186 pages


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