Christian nationalism and white nationalism

Kelly J. Baker studied one of the darker corners of American history, writing Gospel According to the Klan: The KKK’s Appeal to Protestant America, 1915-1930. Baker wishes this was simply the esoteric specialty of a historian, but her topic of study remains disturbingly relevant today. She’s written about that continuing relevance in a Religion & Culture [Read More…]

Sunday favorites

You have dishonored the poor. Is it not the rich who oppress you? Is it not they who drag you into court? Is it not they who blaspheme the excellent name that was invoked over you? [Read more…]

LBCF, No. 140: ‘Bucky’s in love’

Those of us who have served time in conservative Christian youth groups recognize this theme from the many, many Why Wait lectures we heard. Your purity and innocence, the lecture always said, are the Greatest Gift that you can offer to your spouse on your wedding day. Setting aside the merits of this particular pitch for chastity, the strange thing here is finding that the inner monologue of jet-setting, secular, un-saved Buck Williams sounds like a True Love Waits seminar. [Read more…]

If we confess our sins

At this point in the sermon, pastors often balk and attempt to do the impossible — to provide an example of their personal “sin” that is not actually shameful or hurtful or distasteful. They’ll bring up some minor matter of akrasia, some petty foible or embarrassment. They’ll confess to once saying a dirty word when they accidentally hit their thumb with a hammer, or to being impatient in traffic. Their personal illustration, being something trivial, trivializes the entire sermon. [Read more…]

Pew Research finding calls for sackcloth and ashes

Some would adamantly disagree that white evangelicalism has, in any way, “gone wrong.” (It’s those liberal mainline Protestants who went wrong, doncha know, with their fancy seminaries and their Darwinism and whatnot.) But the more important and more interesting disagreement is among those who perceive that, yes, white evangelicalism has gone wrong, but who approach what that means in two very different ways. [Read more…]

Southern Baptists still think of white supremacy as a ‘stain’

The Southern Baptist Convention has passed an official resolution on racism. I’m happy to report that they’re against it. Alas, they also demonstrated that they don’t understand what it is they’re against and up against, or what it will mean for them to oppose it in substance and not just in rhetoric. [Read more…]

How long?

Today’s protest anthem and Monday morning open thread comes courtesy of U2. But is that protest or is it lamentation? Yes. (The melody here is pretty old — over 30 years at this point. The lyrics are, of course, much older. Bono and David are both among my problematic faves.) [Read more…]

Sunday favorites

“O Lord, you God of vengeance,
you God of vengeance, shine forth!
Rise up, O judge of the earth;
give to the proud what they deserve!
O Lord, how long shall the wicked,
how long shall the wicked exult?” [Read more…]

LBCF, No. 139: ‘Worlds collide’

There would be, post-Event, some kind of ritualized exchange that would acknowledge this common ground of loss and bewilderment, some way of asking and answering the “where were you when?” and “who did you lose?” questions. Nothing like this ever happens post-Rapture with any of the characters in Left Behind. [Read more…]

Baptist ‘Resolutions’ Aren’t Usually Newsworthy, but the Struggle to Pass One is

Resolutions and the votes on them tend to get reported as official Southern Baptist pronouncements — as analogous to papal encyclicals or edicts issued by the bishops of formal denominational churches. That’s misleading. These resolutions don’t present official denominational dogma because there is no official denomination. [Read more…]