Is Imposter Christianity a Threat to Democracy?

Is Imposter Christianity a Threat to Democracy? August 25, 2022

Photo by Brad Dodson on Unsplash

There’s a growing trend to vilify Christianity categorically. It’s not all of Christianity that is bad, just any Christianity that is practiced by those who may have lighter colored skin, those who vote on the right side of the political spectrum, and those who hold adoration and honor for their country. Also included in this categorical Christian vilification are any self-identifying Christians who legally own guns.

The circulating assumption penetrates the airwaves— that every white, American Christian wants to create Gilead. It’s the White, evangelical Christians that want to force everyone to have babies, give up their freedom of choice, and keep all women in the kitchen. Then there’s this silly idea that the United States of America was founded on Christian beliefs. If you believe that, well, you’re definitely one of those crazy imposter Christian Nationalists.

A recent CNN article claims that an imposter Christianity is united in believing there shouldn’t be a separation of church and state.  CNN reports, “Erasing the line separating piety from politics is a key characteristic of White Christian nationalism. Many want to reduce or erase the separation of church and state, say those who study the movement.”

But wasn’t the goal of this separation to prevent the government from entering the church, not preventing the church from entering the government? I think that perhaps too many people misinterpret what was intended by this separation principle.

CNN writes, “One of the most popular beliefs among White Christian nationalists is that the US was founded as a Christian nation; the Founding Fathers were all orthodox, evangelical Christians; and God has chosen the US for a special role in history.”

“But the notion that the US was founded as a Christian nation is bad history and bad theology, says Phillip Gorski, a socialist at Yale University and co-author of ‘The Flag and the Cross: White Christian Nationalism and the Threat to American Democracy.’”

But it’s not “bad history” nor is it “bad theology.” The allegation is that those who believe in a foundation set on Christian principles simply want a theocracy. But is that an honest reduction of what is taking place? Don’t people flee other countries because they are fleeing an actual theocracy? So why would we assume the desires of the citizens of today is a theocracy?

All faiths and all beliefs are welcome here. Always have been, always will be. Believe in Allah? Cool. You are welcome. Believe in nothing? Cool. You are welcome. The foundation of this nation was built up by the influence of Christianity. And up until recently, we saw that as a good thing. We certainly live freer than we would in Iran, which is a theocracy.

The insistence that this nation is not Christian in origin, however, is false. And I fell for the myth once upon a time. I was influenced by Gregory Boyd’s bestseller Myth of a Christian Nation. I too, believed that we had it all wrong about the foundation of this country, about the Founding Fathers, and I too misunderstood the intention behind the separation of church and state. And while CNN may believe that this country was not founded on Christian principles, there are Presidents, Supreme Court Justices, and signers of the Declaration of Independence who may have said otherwise. Perhaps the words of these men can help shed light on this notion.

“America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scripture.” Woodrow Wilson


“This is a Christian nation. In this great country of ours has been demonstrated the fundamental unity of Christianity and democracy.” Harry Truman

“In the last 200 years, we have guided the building of our nation and our society by those principles and precepts brought to earth nearly 2,000 years ago on that first Christmas.” Lyndon B. Johnson

Mere sentiments, right? Nothing important here. No Christian foundation is to be seen anywhere in the sentiments of mere Presidents from the past, right?

“I believe no one can read the history of our country without realizing that the Good Book and the Spirit of the Savior have been from the beginning our guiding geniuses…whether we look to the first charters of Virginia, or to the charter of New England…or to the charter of Massachusetts Bay, or to the fundamental orders of Connecticut…the same objective is present: A Christian land governed by Christian principles.” Earl Warren, US Supreme Court Chief Justice (1954)

He also said, “I believe the entire Bill of Rights came into being because of the knowledge our Forefathers had of the Bible and their belief in it: Freedom of belief, of expression, of assembly, of petition, the dignity of the individual, the sanctity of the home, equal justice under law, and the reservation of powers to the people. I like to believe we are living today in the Spirit of the Christian religion. I like also to believe that as long as we do so, no great harm can come to our country.”

The Founders were deists, that’s what many have claimed, including CNN. “Virtually none of them can be classified as evangelical Christians. They were a collection of atheists, Unitarians, Deists, and liberal Protestants and other denominations.” But where’s the evidence?

What did the Founders say? Does that matter? What about John Adams? He once wrote,

“The Holy Ghost carries on the whole Christian system on this earth. Not a baptism, not a marriage, not a sacrament can be administered but by the Holy Ghost…There is no authority, civil or religious—there can be no legitimate government but what is administered by this Holy Ghost. There can be no salvation without it. All without it is rebellion and perdition, or in more orthodox words, damnation.”

What did Samuel Adams have to say about his own beliefs?

“I rely upon the merits of Jesus Christ for a pardon of all my sins…I conceive we cannot better express ourselves than by humbly supplicating the supreme ruler of the world. For the promoting and speedily bringing on the Holy and happy period when the Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ may be everywhere established, and the people willingly bow to the scepter of him who is the Prince of Peace.”

Josiah Bartlett. He signed the Declaration of Independence. Could he account for his beliefs better than CNN?

“Confess before God our aggravated transgressions and…implore his pardon and forgiveness through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ…that the knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ may made known to all nations.

Another signer of the Declaration of Independence, Charles Carrol, once wrote,

“On the mercy of my redeemer I rely for salvation and on his merits, not on the works I have done in obedience to his precepts. I, Charles Carroll…hope that through and by the merits, sufferings, and mediation of my only Savior and Jesus Christ, I may be admitted into the Kingdom prepared by God for those who love, fear, and truly serve Him.”

Alexander Hamilton said,

“I have a tender reliance on the mercy of the Almighty, through the merits of the Lord Jesus Christ. John Hancock once called on the state of Massachusetts to pray on these words: “That all nations may bow to the scepter of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and that the whole earth may be filled with His glory. That the spiritual Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ may be continually increasing until the whole earth shall be filled with His glory…to confess their sins before God and implore his forgiveness through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.”

Why did we never consider that the separation of church and state was designed to keep the government from influencing or interfering with Christianity? Why is the assumption always that they designed a system to prevent Christian influence from penetrating the government? Maybe our government wouldn’t be run by demonic Pharisees who spend us into oblivion if more Christianity penetrated the walls of the government.

The Founders believed in humility and forgiveness. When was the last time you heard an elected official say the words, “I’m sorry, I screwed up.”? When is the last time you saw one politician extend forgiveness to another? 99% of elected politicians relish in braggadocious behavior. Humility? On Capitol Hill? Who would ever conceive of such a thing? Imagine what would happen if a politician actually said the words, “I was wrong.” Half of the planet would fall off from everyone’s jaws dropping to the ground.

Maybe the intent behind founding a country on Christian principles was designed to protect the citizenry from an overreaching government.  Isn’t that what the people wanted when Jesus came through town? What about why this country was founded in the first place? To escape a big, tyrannical monarchy/theocracy?

Historical ignorance and biblical illiteracy are widely present in the CNN article. To surmise that no Founder intended to inject any Christian beliefs into the law of the land is to deny reality. (We are getting really good at denying reality in this country, so I can understand why we fall so easily for glamorized myths and fables as presented by the Main Stream Media Machine.) If you have ever read the Bible and also read the US Constitution, it’s hard to ignore the obvious parallels. The essence of Holy Scripture is blatantly obvious within the Constitution. Almost as if the Founders rewrote Bible verses, expanded on them, and printed them for all of us to honor.




About Danielle M Kingstrom
Danielle is a writer, podcaster, and home-school teacher. She lives in rural Minnesota on a farm with her husband and five children. Together, they maintain a fourth generation legacy farm and raise chickens and cattle. When she is not reading, writing, or self-educating; she can be found outdoors in nature’s naked elements. Danielle is an avid gardener, a lover of art, knowledge, and always a student. She is active in revitalization projects within her community, partnering with committees to bridge the Rural Divide. Unafraid of sparking controversy, Danielle is a frequently published author, appearing regularly in her community’s local newspaper; writing about provocative issues and asking challenging questions that raise a few eyebrows. She is currently working on two books. You can read more about the author here.

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