The Geneva Society was formed in 1998 to promote how the gospel leads to a comprehensive, biblical worldview-based approach to the church’s mission in the world. The Society aims to foster dialogue with both students and the broader Christian community. During the tenure of Dr. Hans Boersema and Dr. Michael Goheen, the governing board of the Geneva Society oversaw a fully-funded academic chair at Trinity Western University (Geneva Chair of Worldview Studies). It continues to sponsor popular public lectures on current issues in contemporary culture.
A Comprehensive Gospel: The Geneva Society operates on the understanding that the good news proclaimed by Jesus Christ (Mk. 1:14-15) offers the light that enables us to understand the entire world. The gospel is a message about the restoration of God’s rule over the entire creation and over every domain of human life (Col. 1:19-20). The Geneva Society promotes this comprehensive view, resisting the narrowing of the gospel to only individual salvation (1 Cor. 10:31).
A Comprehensive Cultural Task: The Geneva Society believes that the Christian community is called to make known the good news of the Kingdom of God in life, deed, and word (Phil. 1:14-15). The task of the church is much broader than evangelism and performing deeds of compassion. Therefore the Geneva Society promotes the comprehensive mission of the followers of Jesus. That calling encompasses every aspect of society (Matt. 5:13-16), including politics, economics, arts, scholarship, education, law, sports, and more.
Reformational Tradition: This tradition is an evangelical tradition arising out of the revival of Reformed life and thought in the Netherlands in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It is especially associated with the leadership of Abraham Kuyper and Herman Bavinck. This tradition has developed rich resources that relate the gospel to the public life of culture, and demonstrated how Christian faith could impact society. It is this tradition that the Geneva Society wants to share with the broader Christian community, and be a catalyst to renew the tradition as it applies to life in the 21st century.
Ecumenical: The Geneva Society believes that the gospel is too high, too wide, too long, and too deep (Eph. 3:18) for any one particular tradition to grasp. Every tradition has developed specific insights into the riches of the gospel, but has also failed to see the full impact of the redemption that Christ has brought to the world. The Geneva Society eagerly seeks to be enriched and amended by other Christian traditions. However, it also believes that the reformational tradition has produced unique biblical insights to relate the gospel to economics, scholarship, politics, art and other areas of public life, insights that can enrich the whole church in its calling in culture today.
The name “Geneva Society” originates from the city of Geneva in Switzerland. The Reformed tradition has its historical origin in the reformer John Calvin. Calvin was a pastor in the city of Geneva for 25 years.