Christian Nation: A Novel


Author: Frederic C. Rich
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393240347
Category: Fiction
Page: 352
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“They said what they would do, and we did not listen. Then they did what they said they would do.” So ends the first chapter of this brilliantly readable counterfactual novel, reminding us that America’s Christian fundamentalists have been consistently clear about their vision for a "Christian Nation" and dead serious about acquiring the political power to achieve it. When President McCain dies and Sarah Palin becomes president, the reader, along with the nation, stumbles down a terrifyingly credible path toward theocracy, realizing too late that the Christian right meant precisely what it said. In the spirit of Philip Roth’s The Plot Against America, one of America’s foremost lawyers lays out in chilling detail what such a future might look like: constitutional protections dismantled; all aspects of life dominated by an authoritarian law called “The Blessing,” enforced by a totally integrated digital world known as the "Purity Web." Readers will find themselves haunted by the questions the narrator struggles to answer in this fictional memoir: "What happened, why did it happen, how could it have happened?"

Letter to a Christian Nation


Author: Sam Harris
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307266605
Category: Religion
Page: 112
View: 4355

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From the new afterword by the author: Humanity has had a long fascination with blood sacrifice. In fact, it has been by no means uncommon for a child to be born into this world only to be patiently and lovingly reared by religious maniacs, who believe that the best way to keep the sun on its course or to ensure a rich harvest is to lead him by tender hand into a field or to a mountaintop and bury, butcher, or burn him alive as offering to an invisible God. The notion that Jesus Christ died for our sins and that his death constitutes a successful propitiation of a “loving” God is a direct and undisguised inheritance of the superstitious bloodletting that has plagued bewildered people throughout history. . .

Was America Founded as a Christian Nation? Revised Edition

A Historical Introduction
Author: John Fea
Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press
ISBN: 1611646936
Category: History
Page: 324
View: 2769

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John Fea offers a thoroughly researched, evenhanded primer on whether America was founded to be a Christian nation, as many evangelicals assert, or a secular state, as others contend. He approaches the title's question from a historical perspective, helping readers see past the emotional rhetoric of today to the recorded facts of our past. This updated edition reports on the many issues that have arisen in recent years concerning religion's place in American society—including the Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage, contraception and the Affordable Care Act, and state-level restrictions on abortion—and demonstrates how they lead us to the question of whether the United States was or is a Christian nation. Fea relates the history of these and other developments, pointing to the underlying questions of national religious identity inherent in each. "We live in a sound-bite culture that makes it difficult to have any sustained dialogue on these historical issues," Fea writes in his preface. "It is easy for those who argue that America is a Christian nation (and those who do not) to appear on radio or television programs, quote from one of the founders or one of the nation's founding documents, and sway people to their positions. These kinds of arguments, which can often be contentious, do nothing to help us unravel a very complicated historical puzzle about the relationship between Christianity and America's founding."

One Nation Under God

How Corporate America Invented Christian America
Author: Kevin Kruse,M Kruse
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 0465040640
Category: History
Page: 384
View: 3010

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Conventional wisdom holds that America has been a Christian nation since the Founding Fathers. But in One Nation Under God, historian Kevin M. Kruse argues that the idea of “Christian America” is nothing more than a myth—and a relatively recent one at that. The assumption that America was, is, and always will be a Christian nation dates back no further than the 1930s, when a coalition of businessmen and religious leaders united in opposition to the FDR’s New Deal. With the full support of Dwight Eisenhower in the 1950s, these activists—the forerunners of the Religious Right—propelled religion into the public sphere. Church membership skyrocketed; Congress added the phrase “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance and made “In God We Trust” the country’s official motto. For the first time, America became a thoroughly religious nation. Provocative and authoritative, One Nation Under God reveals how the comingling of money, religion, and politics created a false origin story that continues to define and divide American politics today.

Myth and the Christian Nation

A Social Theory of Religion
Author: Burton L. Mack
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317490584
Category: Religion
Page: 224
View: 4448

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America is widely regarded as the ultimate "Christian Nation." Religious language has always been at the forefront of American politics but this has increased since the events of 9/11. 'Myth and the Christian Nation' presents a startling analysis of how and why Christianity and national identity have been woven together in recent American political discourse. Drawing on examples of religious myth-making across the ancient world 'Myth and the Christian Nation' brings the weight of history to bear on America today, a place where myth, monotheism, sovereignty and power can be harnessed together in the service of specific interests. The book invites readers to rethink the role of religion in the construction of social democracy and to see America afresh.

The Myth of a Christian Nation

How the Quest for Political Power Is Destroying the Church
Author: Gregory A. Boyd
Publisher: Zondervan
ISBN: 031056591X
Category: Religion
Page: 224
View: 1329

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The church was established to serve the world with Christ-like love, not to rule the world. It is called to look like a corporate Jesus, dying on the cross for those who crucified him, not a religious version of Caesar. It is called to manifest the kingdom of the cross in contrast to the kingdom of the sword. Whenever the church has succeeded in gaining what most American evangelicals are now trying to get – political power – it has been disastrous both for the church and the culture. Whenever the church picks up the sword, it lays down the cross. The present activity of the religious right is destroying the heart and soul of the evangelical church and destroying its unique witness to the world. The church is to have a political voice, but we are to have it the way Jesus had it: by manifesting an alternative to the political, “power over,” way of doing life. We are to transform the world by being willing to suffer for others – exercising “power under,” not by getting our way in society – exercising “power over.”

Citizens of a Christian Nation

Evangelical Missions and the Problem of Race in the Nineteenth Century
Author: Derek Chang
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
ISBN: 0812205952
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 248
View: 4428

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In America after the Civil War, the emancipation of four million slaves and the explosion of Chinese immigration fundamentally challenged traditional ideas about who belonged in the national polity. As Americans struggled to redefine citizenship in the United States, the "Negro Problem" and the "Chinese Question" dominated the debate. During this turbulent period, which witnessed the Supreme Court's Plessy v. Ferguson decision and passage of the Chinese Exclusion Act, among other restrictive measures, American Baptists promoted religion instead of race as the primary marker of citizenship. Through its domestic missionary wing, the American Baptist Home Missionary Society, Baptists ministered to former slaves in the South and Chinese immigrants on the Pacific coast. Espousing an ideology of evangelical nationalism, in which the country would be united around Christianity rather than a particular race or creed, Baptists advocated inclusion of Chinese and African Americans in the national polity. Their hope for a Christian nation hinged on the social transformation of these two groups through spiritual and educational uplift. By 1900, the Society had helped establish important institutions that are still active today, including the Chinese Baptist Church and many historically black colleges and universities. Citizens of a Christian Nation chronicles the intertwined lives of African Americans, Chinese Americans, and the white missionaries who ministered to them. It traces the radical, religious, and nationalist ideology of the domestic mission movement, examining both the opportunities provided by the egalitarian tradition of evangelical Christianity and the limits imposed by its assumptions of cultural difference. The book further explores how blacks and Chinese reimagined the evangelical nationalist project to suit their own needs and hopes. Historian Derek Chang brings together for the first time African American and Chinese American religious histories through a multitiered local, regional, national, and even transnational analysis of race, nationalism, and evangelical thought and practice.

The Benedict Option

A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation
Author: Rod Dreher
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0735213291
Category: Political Science
Page: 262
View: 6171

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A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER "Already the most discussed and most important religious book of the decade." --David Brooks In this controversial bestseller, Rod Dreher calls on American Christians to prepare for the coming Dark Age by embracing an ancient Christian way of life. From the inside, American churches have been hollowed out by the departure of young people and by an insipid pseudo-Christianity. From the outside, they are beset by challenges to religious liberty in a rapidly secularizing culture. Keeping Hillary Clinton out of the White House may have bought a brief reprieve from the state's assault, but it will not stop the West's slide into decadence and dissolution. Rod Dreher argues that the way forward is actually the way back--all the way to St. Benedict of Nursia. This sixth-century monk, horrified by the moral chaos following Rome's fall, retreated to the forest and created a new way of life for Christians. He built enduring communities based on principles of order, hospitality, stability, and prayer. His spiritual centers of hope were strongholds of light throughout the Dark Ages, and saved not just Christianity but Western civilization. Today, a new form of barbarism reigns. Many believers are blind to it, and their churches are too weak to resist. Politics offers little help in this spiritual crisis. What is needed is the Benedict Option, a strategy that draws on the authority of Scripture and the wisdom of the ancient church. The goal: to embrace exile from mainstream culture and construct a resilient counterculture. The Benedict Option is both manifesto and rallying cry for Christians who, if they are not to be conquered, must learn how to fight on culture war battlefields like none the West has seen for fifteen hundred years. It's for all mere Christians--Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox--who can read the signs of the times. Neither false optimism nor fatalistic despair will do. Only faith, hope, and love, embodied in a renewed church, can sustain believers in the dark age that has overtaken us. These are the days for building strong arks for the long journey across a sea of night.

The End of White Christian America


Author: Robert P. Jones
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501122290
Category: History
Page: 320
View: 930

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"The founder and CEO of Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) and columnist forThe Atlantic describes how white Protestant Christians have declined in influence and power since the 1990s and explores the effect this has had on America,"--NoveList.

Death of a Christian Nation


Author: Deborah J. Dewart
Publisher: God & Country Press
ISBN: 9780899570235
Category: Religion
Page: 206
View: 7449

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A case-by-case look at how current laws impact Christianity in the workplace explains where one can find help and aims to give readers an understanding of the First Amendment, radical agendas, civil rights and religious wrongs--and challenges readers to take a stand for traditional values in their own communities. Original.

The American Religion

The Emergence of the Post-Christian Nation
Author: Harold Bloom
Publisher: Touchstone Books
ISBN: 9780671867379
Category: Religion
Page: 288
View: 7785

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The emergence of the post-Christian nation.

Our Non-Christian Nation

How Atheists, Satanists, Pagans, and Others Are Demanding Their Rightful Place in Public Life
Author: Jay Wexler
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 9780804798990
Category: Law
Page: 216
View: 9923

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Less and less Christian demographically, American is now home to an ever larger number of people who say they identify with no religion at all. These non-Christians have increasingly been demanding their full participation in public life, bringing their arguments all the way to The Supreme Court. The law is on their side, but that doesn't mean that their attempts are not met with suspicion or outright hostility. In Our Non-Christian Nation, Jay Wexler travels the country to engage the non-Christians who have called on us to maintain our ideals of inclusivity and diversity. With his characteristic sympathy and humor, he introduces us to the Summum and their Seven Aphorisms, a Wiccan priestess who tries to deck her local City Hall with a pagan holiday wreath, and other determined champions of free religious expression. As Wexler reminds us, anyone who cares about pluralism, equality, and fairness should support a public square filled with a variety of religious and nonreligious voices. We have nothing to lose but long-term social peace.

The Godless Constitution

The Case Against Religious Correctness
Author: Isaac Kramnick,Robert Laurence Moore
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 9780393315240
Category: Church and state
Page: 191
View: 1396

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Refutes the claims of the religious right that America was founded as a Christian nation, and emphasizes that separation of church and state was designed to guarantee religious freedom

The Search for Christian America


Author: Mark A. Noll,Nathan O. Hatch,George M. Marsden
Publisher: Helmers & Howard Pub
ISBN: 9780939443154
Category: Religion
Page: 199
View: 6598

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Through careful historical and contemporary analysis, the authors address such issues as how much Christian action is required to make a whole society Christian; incorrect views of America's history for effective Christian involvement in critical public issues; and more. (Christian)

Inventing a Christian America

The Myth of the Religious Founding
Author: Steven K. Green
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190230991
Category: History
Page: 304
View: 2403

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Among the most enduring themes in American history is the idea that the United States was founded as a Christian nation. A pervasive narrative in everything from school textbooks to political commentary, it is central to the way in which many Americans perceive the historical legacy of their nation. Yet, as Steven K. Green shows in this illuminating new book, it is little more than a myth. In Inventing a Christian America, Green, a leading historian of religion and politics, explores the historical record that is purported to support the popular belief in America's religious founding and status as a Christian nation. He demonstrates that, like all myths, these claims are based on historical "facts" that have been colored by the interpretive narratives that have been imposed upon them. In tracing the evolution of these claims and the evidence levied in support of them from the founding of the New England colonies, through the American Revolution, and to the present day, he investigates how they became leading narratives in the country's collective identity. Three critical moments in American history shaped and continue to drive the myth of a Christian America: the Puritan founding of New England, the American Revolution and the forging of a new nation, and the early years of the nineteenth century, when a second generation of Americans sought to redefine and reconcile the memory of the founding to match their religious and patriotic aspirations. Seeking to shed light not only on the veracity of these ideas but on the reasons they endure, Green ultimately shows that the notion of America's religious founding is a myth not merely in the colloquial sense, but also in a deeper sense, as a shared story that gives deeper meaning to our collective national identity. Offering a fresh look at one of the most common and contested claims in American history, Inventing a Christian America is an enlightening read for anyone interested in the story of-and the debate over-America's founding.

Bible Nation

The United States of Hobby Lobby
Author: Candida R. Moss,Joel S. Baden
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 140088831X
Category: Religion
Page: 240
View: 9633

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How the billionaire owners of Hobby Lobby are spending hundreds of millions of dollars to make America a “Bible nation” Like many evangelical Christians, the Green family of Oklahoma City believes that America was founded on a “biblical worldview as a Christian nation.” But the Greens are far from typical evangelicals in other ways. The billionaire owners of Hobby Lobby, a huge nationwide chain of craft stores, the Greens came to national attention in 2014 after successfully suing the federal government over their religious objections to provisions of the Affordable Care Act. What is less widely known is that the Greens are now America’s biggest financial supporters of Christian causes—and they are spending hundreds of millions of dollars in an ambitious effort to increase the Bible’s influence on American society. In Bible Nation, Candida Moss and Joel Baden provide the first in-depth investigative account of the Greens’ sweeping Bible projects and the many questions they raise. Bible Nation tells the story of the Greens’ rapid acquisition of an unparalleled collection of biblical antiquities; their creation of a closely controlled group of scholars to study and promote their collection; their efforts to place a Bible curriculum in public schools; and their construction of a $500 million Museum of the Bible near the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Bible Nation reveals how these seemingly disparate initiatives promote a very particular set of beliefs about the Bible—and raise serious ethical questions about the trade in biblical antiquities, the integrity of academic research, and more. Bible Nation is an important and timely account of how a vast private fortune is being used to promote personal faith in the public sphere—and why it should matter to everyone.

Sex and the Constitution: Sex, Religion, and Law from America's Origins to the Twenty-First Century


Author: Geoffrey R. Stone
Publisher: Liveright Publishing
ISBN: 1631493655
Category: Law
Page: 704
View: 5991

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There has never been a book like Sex and the Constitution, a one-volume history that chapter after chapter overturns popular shibboleths, while dramatically narrating the epic story of how sex came to be legislated in America. Beginning his volume in the ancient and medieval worlds, Geoffrey R. Stone demonstrates how the Founding Fathers, deeply influenced by their philosophical forebears, saw traditional Christianity as an impediment to the pursuit of happiness and to the quest for human progress. Acutely aware of the need to separate politics from the divisive forces of religion, the Founding Fathers crafted a constitution that expressed the fundamental values of the Enlightenment. Although the Second Great Awakening later came to define America through the lens of evangelical Christianity, nineteenth-century Americans continued to view sex as a matter of private concern, so much so that sexual expression and information about contraception circulated freely, abortions before “quickening” remained legal, and prosecutions for sodomy were almost nonexistent. The late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries reversed such tolerance, however, as charismatic spiritual leaders and barnstorming politicians rejected the values of our nation’s founders. Spurred on by Anthony Comstock, America’s most feared enforcer of morality, new laws were enacted banning pornography, contraception, and abortion, with Comstock proposing that the word “unclean” be branded on the foreheads of homosexuals. Women increasingly lost control of their bodies, and birth control advocates, like Margaret Sanger, were imprisoned for advocating their beliefs. In this new world, abortions were for the first time relegated to dank and dangerous back rooms. The twentieth century gradually saw the emergence of bitter divisions over issues of sexual “morality” and sexual freedom. Fiercely determined organizations and individuals on both the right and the left wrestled in the domains of politics, religion, public opinion, and the courts to win over the soul of the nation. With its stirring portrayals of Supreme Court justices, Sex and the Constitution reads like a dramatic gazette of the critical cases they decided, ranging from Griswold v. Connecticut (contraception), to Roe v. Wade (abortion), to Obergefell v. Hodges (gay marriage), with Stone providing vivid historical context to the decisions that have come to define who we are as a nation. Now, though, after the 2016 presidential election, we seem to have taken a huge step backward, with the progress of the last half century suddenly imperiled. No one can predict the extent to which constitutional decisions safeguarding our personal freedoms might soon be eroded, but Sex and the Constitution is more vital now than ever before.