Archive for November, 2010

American Christian Arrogance

I am noticing a disturbing trend amongst some American Christians. Probably due to the fact that we as a people have not endured persecution in this country (like our less fortunate brothers elsewhere), and also due to the fact that we are the nominal majority here, we seem to have developed a sense of entitlement.

This is expresed through complaints about creches, Ten Commandment monuments, and crosses being removed from government property, the seemingly ceaseless proclaimation that we are a “Christian Country” and a litany of frankly disgusting religio-patriotic hymns that seem to forget that 1) there are gracious, loving, and kind Christians living elsewhere in the world that don’t feel that the USA is God’s gift to the world; and 2) that the United States of America has been, is, and will continue to be a flawed, sinful and human nation.

Don’t misunderstand me. I love the freedoms and protections I have in this country, and I am greatful for the men and women who fight tirelessly to preserve these liberties and protections (and I’m talking about more than just soldiers here). There is no other place on the earth I’d rather live.

But this is not our land, and I see no significant reason to believe that it is God’s land either. This country was founded by men, with men’s ideas and men’s guns. I cannot find a single passage or prophesy dictating that the founding fathers build a Christian country on North American Soil. In fact, I see no command to build a “Christian Nation” anywhere in Scripture.

There is nothing to indicate that this nation is specifically blessed by God, anymore than France, Germany, Greece etc. Yes, I am sure that God has moved in America, as all Good things derive ultimately from God. But Good things happen around the world, great blessings that are deeply meaningful to people, and yet they don’t proclaim their nation as some sort of New Jerusalem built in Heaven intended to rule the earth.

What I do see is our Master warning us against lust for power. The Commandment from Christ was not to build a nation, but rather to preach the Gospel, Make disciples when they listen to the message (Matt 28:19), and move elsewhere when they won’t (Matt 10:14).

How could we take this message to mean build an empire and marginalize those who do not believe as we do?

(For those Curious. This post was sparked by a thread on a forum I belong to, where a great number of my fellow American Christians were stating that mosques should not be built in the US as supposedly muslim values are “anti american” whatever that means. I assume they referring to the whole “Christian nation” thing.)

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So Why Do I Do This to Myself?

I went back to Sodahead, the vile stinking pit of politiocultist paranoia and warfare. In the last two days i’ve been called a democrat and a false Christian, because i’ve criticized Jingoism as the enemy of patriotism.

The Thread in question was regarding whether or not it was acceptable to criticize America to foreigners. I argued that we have the constitutional right to criticize our government to whomever we want, and that that right is one of the essential building blocks of our society.

For some reason that makes me an anti american traitor.

The Rhetoric there pisses me off substantially, but i keep getting dragged back in.