Thursday, February 25, 2021

Evangelical Leaders Condemn Christian Nationalism

Here's a welcome development. A group of evangelical Christian leaders has come out against "Christian nationalism," which they describe as "heresy." Wow. I have to say, I didn't see that coming. I mean, the whole concept is obviously heretical if you read the Bible and understand Christian theology and all that, but I'm not a Christian so when I say it, even over and over again, none of them listen to me. Hopefully they'll finally listen to members of their own religious leadership.

A coalition of evangelical Christian leaders is condemning the role of "radicalized Christian nationalism" in feeding the political extremism that led to the violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 by supporters of former President Donald Trump.

In an open letter, more than 100 pastors, ministry and seminary leaders, and other prominent evangelicals express concern about the growing "radicalization" they're seeing, particularly among white evangelicals.

The letter notes that some members of the mob that stormed the Capitol carried Christian symbols and signs that read, "Jesus Saves," and that one of the rioters stood on the Senate rostrum and led a Christian prayer. The letter calls on other Christian leaders to take a public stand against racism, Christian nationalism, conspiracy theories and political extremism.

The letter reads, in part: "We recognize that evangelicalism, and white evangelicalism in particular, has been susceptible to the heresy of Christian nationalism because of a long history of faith leaders accommodating white supremacy. We choose to speak out now because we do not want to be quiet accomplices in this on-going sin."

Christian nationalism has a special appeal to Poor Oppressed Christians, that minority of Christians who feel oppressed by the mere existence of anyone different. By claiming that the United States was founded as a "Christian Nation" (when it was really founded on the idea of religious freedom), they can justify their un-American (and really, un-Christian) eliminationist beliefs as part of their religion. But they're really not.

It's good to see evangelical leaders recognizing this and speaking out against it. Let's hope that a lot of these folks take heed and rein this nonsense in before more bad things happen.

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