The role of religion in America has always been a point of contention as devout Christians and Jews struggle to have their voice heard and atheists and agnostics declare that God has no place in the public square.
Newsweek’s cover story is all about Christianity. Writer Andrew Sullivan stakes the claim that Christianity has been “destroyed” by politics, evangelists and priests. The article, which starts by examining Thomas Jefferson’s views on faith and the Bible, delves deeply into all that Sullivan sees wrong with Christianity in America.
After stating his belief in “Jesus’ divinity and resurrection,“ Sullivan goes on to urge a ”return to what Jesus actually asked us to do and to be.” Jefferson, who the writer claims was for a “simpler, purer, apolitical Christianity,” would have stark differences with the worldview embraced by modern-day Christianity. Here’s how he summed up the situation in America:
On one side, the Republican base is made up of evangelical Protestants who believe that religion must consume and influence every aspect of public life. On the other side, the last Democratic primary had candidates profess their faith in public forums, and more recently President Obama appeared at the National Prayer Breakfast, invoking Jesus to defend his plan for universal health care. The crisis of Christianity is perhaps best captured in the new meaning of the word “secular.” It once meant belief in separating the spheres of faith and politics; it now means, for many, simply atheism. The ability to be faithful in a religious space and reasonable in a political one has atrophied before our eyes.
Of course, most Christians greatly misunderstand the role the Lord in politics and government in the first place. Most will attempt to legislate morality, when government is wholly inadequate to control the citizen’s behavior. You can see that Mr Sullivan fails to understand who Jesus is anyway when you see the cover photo on Newsweek. Jesus was and is a bible observant Jew. Where is the prayer shawl, the hair and beard and so on. The Lord’s kingdom is not of this earth and will not be brought about by the efforts of men. The kingdom of God is in the hearts of men and women who submit themselves to the King.
The problem is that Mr. Sullivan, the president and most Christians are not themselves submitted to the authority of Jesus, allowing Him to alter their priorities and behavior. As several of our founders made clear, America’s government will not survive anything but a Christian nation it is not suitable to any but a moral people.