The question of civil disobedience has assumed new urgency on the contemporary American scene. Disobedience has become a possible course of action that draws a large number of persons to it for reasons of conscience. At the same time, there is a widespread rejection of civil disobedience within the churches although the author doubts whether their official statements carry much authority with the public. The argument in this book considers a definition of the concept of civil disobedience, and then examines the grounds for and against such a course of action to be found in the New Testament and in church history from ancient to contemporary times. The increased complexity of problems faced by the State today makes any simple decision on the question of disobeying the law impossible. It should be followed only as a last resort, and with a deep concern for the importance of social order and reconstruction. Revolution, however, puts the question in a new frame of reference. Ultimately, obedience must be to God. While the book does not resolve the question of whether or not to disobey the law, it does greatly clarify the issues and considerations involved in such a decision, and fills a vacancy of solid argument much needed. It should attract a wide reading both within and without the church.