By Love Thy Neighborhood | Listen
Published in February of 2022

SUMMARY: In an illuminating hour hosts Jesse Eubanks and Rachel Szabo trace religious nationalism to the gospels (Matthew 3) while weaving interviews with Samuel Perry, a sociologist who developed a Christian nationalism scale, and discussions with three Christians who fall on different ends of the spectrum.

Perry says there are six beliefs that make up Christian nationalism:

  • The federal government should declare the United States a Christian nation
  • The federal government should advocate Christian values
  • The federal government should not enforce strict separation of church and state
  • The federal government should allow the display of religious symbols in public spaces
  • The federal government should allow prayer in public schools
  • The success of the United States is part of God’s plan
Christian Nationalism Scale

Depending on whether a person strongly agrees, disagrees, or lands somewhere in the middle with those statements depends on where a person falls on Perry’s scale of Christian Nationalism.

The first person the hosts talk to is Michael Mills who goes to Fuller Seminary in California where he learns that his religious and civic identity has been steeped in Christian nationalism.

Sandwiched in between Mills’ story are interviews with pastor Ken Peters, who founded Patriot Church in Knoxville, TN, and falls under the ambassador category on the Christian Nationalism scale along with Amanda Tyler, who founded ChristiansAgainstNationalism.org, and falls under the rejecter part of the scale.

KEY QUOTE: “Christian nationalism exaggerates America’s goodness and downplays America’s sin and I think that the gospel brings America back into its proper place. We can celebrate and be thankful for the good gifts that America brings, but we can also be very realistic how broken we are because all man-made systems are broken and America was made by men and not by God. We can be grateful for the country we live in, but also know that is can never save us.”

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Our latest curated podcasts on Christian nationalism:

PODCAST: What is Christian Nationalism with Alex Tuckness

In a well rounded and straightforward conversation lead pastor at Cornerstone Church of Ames (Amex. IA) Mark Vance and Iowa State University professor Alex Tuckness discuss if Christian nationalism is real, how Christian nationalism can be distorted, and the dangers of Christian nationalism in the public square.

Read more

PODCAST: How to Deal with Christian Nationalism

Was America founded as a Christian nation? That depends on how you define Christian and how you define nation. In the 1800s did most of the population identify as Christian? Yes. Was this also a time when 1/3 of the population was in forced labor? Yes. Was this also a time when the majority of the population attended church? Yes. Was this a time when laws and social norms discriminated against Native Americans, black people, Catholics, and many other groups? Yes. Host Chris Staron illustrates that the claim that America was founded as a Christian nation or the statement that we need to “get back to being a Christian nation” is dubious. American history bears witness to a vague Christianity. One where people identify with the religion but don’t follow the way of Jesus. Staron calls this the battle between the economic Jesus and the servant Jesus.

Read more

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