Forgive me for mining the comments on Unreasonable Faith for yet another post but their community of commentators is spectacular, so it’s inevitable that there will be multiple things worth calling attention to. This comes from Mike Speir (who is also something of a Camels With Hammers regular):
My thinking is that Evangelical/Fundamentalist Christians in this country have a problem. They worship two masters: God and America. Intuitively, they know this can’t stand. America was founded as a country where the state (the people) is first and religion may operate so long as it doesn’t militate against the good of the whole. In other words, religion is secondary, behind the interests of the country. To Christians of a certain stripe this is intolerable, so they’ve tried to find ways for the church to co-opt the state, to annex it. Americanism simply becomes an element of their version of the Christian religion. They solve two problems in this way. First, God returns to his rightful (according to them) position of overall supremacy. Second, they no longer have to worry about the problem of worshiping competing masters. God expects them to worship America, because worship of America has become de facto worship of God.