Go home!



NOTE: This is a fan page.
Dr. Leithart does not have a Facebook account.

RECENT ENTRIES
-Moving Day
-Senecan Pepys
-Gentlemanly Ethics
-Crossed out
-Seneca in English
-Sermon notes
-Pop Culture
-Unchained Bible
-Res Publica
-Spiritual commerce
-Draw near to hear
-Musical evangelism
-Voice of the Martyrs
-Trinity Institute: Norman Shepherd Says
-Trinity Institute: A Student Perspective
-For My Name’s Sake
-Iron sinews
-Sermon notes
-Seeking worshipers
-Responsive craft
CATEGORY ARCHIVES
  • LINKS
    - Biblical Horizons
    - Covenant Worldview Institute
    - Theologia
    FEED

    CONTACT

    Comments:
    leithart@leithart.com

    Problems:
    webmaster@leithart.com





    |
    |

    American Religion History: Christian America?

    [Print] | [PDF] | [Email]

    Is America a “Christian nation”?  A perennial puzzle, and finally impossible to answer without many “in what respects?” qualifiers.

    One distinction might help: Presuppose a nation full of Christians, as America was for much of its history.  That nation might take various forms, and the distinction I want to introduce is that between a biblical nation and a Christian nation.

    A nation where the rite of royal anointing includes explicit references to the king’s iconic relation to the Anointed Jesus is (in that respect) Christian.  A nation where the rite of inauguration includes an oath  with a hand on a Bible, but includes no reference to Jesus or the Trinity or even God, may be a biblical nation but isn’t (in respect to this rite) a Christian policy.

    Another example: Many American Puritan writers, and many American writers long after, considered America “God’s New Israel” (for a great selection from John Winthrop to Ralph Reed, see Conrad Cherry’s God’s New Israel: Religious Interpretations of American Destiny).  That is definitely a biblical trope.  But it hardly qualifies as a Christian one, for it is self-evident in the New Testament that the church alone is God’s new Israel.  Insofar as the American experience is read through the lends of America-as-Israel, America is a biblical but not a Christian nation.

    posted by Peter J. Leithart on Friday, July 1, 2011 at 8:29 am