America is not a Christian nation. Despite the fact that some groups sought religious freedom in America, our founders knew from experience that having a national religion was dangerous. Separation of church and state was written to protect religious freedom.
Dominion theology and Christian Nationalism
To me the most damaging kind of Christians are the ones who think that God expects (and needs) the participation of Christians to usher in the kingdom of heaven on earth IN AMERICA. These people have have been lead astray into thinking that God is waiting for humans to infiltrate all societal institutions at every level. By so doing they believe they can and must make America a Christian Nation. This is a false teaching called Dominion Theology that is part of several different theological traditions. These ideas are sometimes combined with other ideas into different forms of Christian Nationalism.
It’s not hard to understand why this would be a popular teaching. Who doesn’t want to experience peace and prosperity on earth now? All Christians look forward to having eternal life with Jesus as our king. But the Bible teaches that this will happen after Jesus returns to earth, not before.
However, men selling promises to eager audiences know that this teaching appeals to our fleshly desire to control others and be part of the ruling party. Telling church members that they will be bringing in the Kingdom is like offering them glory and honor. This message also attracts those who want to be ‘doers of the Word’, in other words, earnest, hard-working and sincerely confused Christians who are just trying to be obedient to what they are taught the Bible says.
Unfortunately radical groups also like this message and they often add their own beliefs to the teaching, such as White supremacy, anti-semitism, and even polygamy.
Filling schools and public institutions with Christians in order to spread Christian beliefs is not a bad thing UNLESS one expects to use the power of LAW to enforce Christian values. Christians definitely should try to influence the culture for good, but we do this through our example of good behavior, and showing love and service to others, not by laws. We must be respectful and use patience, especially with those who hate us.
It’s unclear how many followers of dominionist theology and nationalism there actually are, but their existence threatens freedom of religion for all people.
The religion of Secular Humanism
In today’s culture though, religion has crept back in to the schools, courts, Congress, and Constitutional law under the guise of equality and political correctness in the religion of the left, Secular Humanism.
Secular humanism is not a modern development. Man has sought to elevate himself through wisdom and self-discipline and other methods since the Fall. Eve’s desire to “be wise” like God was the same temptation that snares humanists today.
History is full of the destruction caused by the pride of seeking to be free of God’s authority and laws. During The Enlightenment period of the 17th and 18th centuries, many men put forth ideas that gloried reason over “superstition” and religion.
While the religious rulers of that day definitely needed reforming, eliminating God was not the solution. These thinkers actually contributed a great deal to the ideas of natural rights, freedom and democracy that were written into the Constitution. But like many progressive ideas, they were taken too far by some. True freedom comes from staying within the boundaries set by God.
The progressive political movement is largely controlled by proponents of secular humanism which denies the existence of the spiritual world and even believes that religion is the cause of the world’s problems and should be abolished. Secular humanists believe that with enough time, education, and laws, mankind can be perfected, thus there is no need for supernatural beliefs. They believe that teaching children about an invisible God is child abuse.
Humanists must not have noticed that by encouraging the end of religion, dumbing down the schools, keeping people focused self-actualization, their bodies, sex, work and entertainment that they are destroying the glue that holds society together: faith, the family, the church, freedom and limited government. Or perhaps that is the goal of some of them. Marxism and humanism are close friends.
Both of these extremes are wrong. Christian Nationalism in all it’s variations is not biblical or Constitutional. Progressivism and secular humanism do not lead to peace and prosperity.
Christians must guard themselves and their families from this strong push to eradicate faith, but even more must not be tempted to join in the misguided and dangerous desire to turn America into a theocracy. Beware the teachings that appeal to man’s pride.
Progressives must be restrained from pushing ideological beliefs through the public school system.
Knowing your Bible is the first and best defense, and teaching it to your children is a must.
Amen and wonderfully said Merry Christmas … Have a blessed day
So true, there are a lot of things that take our focus off God, some so subtle that otherwise devoted believers are seduced away from the church without realizing it. (Check out “Seduction, the Frog,and the Death of Sunday,” my post from November 9. How many examples of this have you seen?)
As a pastor, many of the biggest obstacles I try to help folks overcome is the ‘religion’ that the mis-guided (and mis- named?) Christians have forced on others as THE way to do things. The example set by the mindset of these Pharisees causes many innocent ones to stumble or worse yet, give up on faith altogether.
Thank you for sharing this, it is something that needs to be heard to help us all better share the heart of Christ with the world around us.
Thanks for reading. I’m glad it spoke to you. I think most of us want to know the ‘right’ way to do things and the idea of ‘just believe’ and be saved, can be hard to accept in a world where we are judged by what our works. Humans always want to add to God’s plan , leading to all kinds of religious practices that lead us further away from Him. God bless you!
I appreciate your kindness and prayers.
I hope the holiday ‘visit’ wasn’t as bad as expected. Or is it still going on?
It actually was very nice! Thank you.
“Christians should be involved in the political process, and we can do much good, but we should never forget that the only government that will succeed in global reform is Christ’s government.” (Randy Alcorn, Heaven)
I need to read that book.
It’s a good one, and opens one’s mind to the excitement of getting to go there one day. Like Paul said, “to live is Christ, to die is GAIN!” Not that we should seek to go there on our schedule, but to welcome the day Father has set to call us Home.
This is the topic of St. Augustine’s tome The City of God, written in the 5th century amid the chaos of the collapse of the Roman Empire (which upended the lives of people in the provinces, like Augustine, considerably). A lot of Augustine’s contemporaries were blaming the fall of Rome on the spread of Christianity. He systematically rebukes both the people who blame Christianity for the collapse of a corrupt and increasingly incompetent government and the people who believe the Church should be yoked to political affairs. It’s a classic in philosophy because his points never stop being spot-on. His overall message is Christians need to focus on the Church (the City of God) and stop looking for resolutions to eternal problems in human affairs. It is an incredibly liberating perspective.
Thanks! I’ve been meaning to hunt you down. Hope everything is going well.
Yeah, I haven’t been online much. My dad was in the ICU for a few weeks. He’s out now (thank God).
I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about what it takes to flourish in a fallen world, which intersects with the topic of your post here.
I’ve pretty much weaned myself off of doomscrolling, which is hard to do these days with the economy. But I have become super conscious of how it affects my demeanor and how my demeanor affects everyone in our household, particularly our daughter, whom I homeschool. One of the big reasons we chose to homeschool was to have the opportunity to focus on what is good, true, and beautiful, and that used to not be that difficult. Now it’s a bona fide debate how much of the world to let in.
I don’t want to be some ostrich burying my head in the sand about current events, but at the same time, this is her childhood and it shouldn’t be superfluously miserable just because the world is more connected and we can’t help but see how people are going mad “out there.” I just saw in our church bulletin today that our parish is locking its doors during Mass to keep worshippers safe. They didn’t mention any specific threats, but it’s understood they are coming after Catholics post-Roe. I don’t know how to process this stuff anymore. How do you explain to your kid that there are people out there so broken that they want us dead for our religion because they think it is infringing on their “right” to kill babies? It’s taking everything I have not to be bitter about the totally normal, happy, beautiful culture these people are stealing from us. Anyway, I have to keep reminding myself of St. Augustine’s wisdom on a near-daily basis.
I feel you on all of this. Our church has plainclothes armed security now. 😕I’ve had to stop doomscrolling and watching too much h YouTube . There’s a podcast you might like called The General Eclectic. Recent episode was really good . https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-general-eclectic/id1556921055?i=1000569936314 Stay true. Hugs from Texas!
Oh, this looks fantastic! I listen to a lot of podcasts while I am gardening, so recommendations are much appreciated. One I have enjoyed a great deal lately is Girlboss, Interrupted. It’s a very intelligent critique of feminism and women’s issues, specifically with respect to shifting attitudes about marriage and motherhood.
I’ll check it out!
The problem is freedom isn’t a reasonable foundation for a nation because there is no basis for determining where laws or morals come from. That’s why our country is an ideological mess and disparate elements vye for their version of morality. It was bound to happen. At this point, many citizens would appreciate any kind of nationalism for our security and economic future. Secular humanists unfortunately tip towards globalism.
Right. Moral relativism isn’t working.