Whether or not America is a Christian nation
Posted by Salvatore Anthony Luiso
Last week Christianity Today and The Dispatch published two articles which complement each other. These articles were written by two Christian men who are friends. I recommend both of them.
Here are links to them:
The Capitol Attack Signaled a Post-Christian Church, Not Merely a Post-Christian Culture
Last year’s events in DC threatened not only American democracy but also evangelical witness.
By Russell Moore
A Nation of Christians Is Not Necessarily a Christian Nation
We cannot equate Christian power with Christian justice.
By David French
These articles and others like them prompt the following questions:
1. What is a Christian nation?
2. What is a post-Christian nation?
3. Was America a Christian nation?
4. Is America a Christian nation?
5. Is America a post-Christian nation?
6. Will America be a Christian nation?
7. Is it possible for America to be a Christian nation?
I myself am not as interested in such questions as I used to be. Whether or not America is a Christian nation, I have other concerns which are of incomparably greater importance, including these three:
1. God: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Deuteronomy 6:4–5; Isaiah 40:15–17; Matthew 22:34–38)
2. the kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33)
3. the church, which the Apostle Peter calls "a holy nation" (I Peter 2:9), echoing what God said to Moses about the Israelites (Exodus 19:6).
Thus, although I am concerned about the state of Christianity in America, I am far more concerned about the state of Christianity in the church.
The Lord Jesus said that His disciples are the light of the world and like a city set on a hill (Matthew 5:14): not the United States of America. No one and nothing can ever take their place in those respects.
The Lord Jesus also said that His disciples are the salt of the earth. He warned them that if the salt loses its savor, "it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men" (Matthew 5:13). This does not mean that if the world casts out and trods on His disciples, it is always because they lack savor—but it does mean that if they lose their savor, they are good for nothing but to be cast out and trodden upon.
Note that "savor" does not mean "political power", nor any other kind of worldly power. It is a quality which only disciples of Jesus can have, and which they should have, and which they receive from Him—and which they can lose.
They will not lose out saltiness if they live by the following seven truths:
1. Whether or not America is a Christian nation: God shall endure forever (Deuteronomy 33:27; Psalms 9:7, 102:12 and 24; Isaiah 57:15; Romans 6:9; Hebrews 13:8; I Timothy 1:17 and 6:13–16; Revelation 1:17–18 and 4:8–11).
2. Whether or not America is a Christian nation: the kingdom of God shall endure forever (Psalms 145:13; Isaiah 9:6–7; Daniel 4:3 and 7:27; Luke 1:30–33; II Peter 1:11).
3. Whether or not America is a Christian nation: the church of God shall endure forever (Matthew 16:18; I Corinthians 12:12; Ephesians 5:22–33; Colossians 1:18; Revelation 21:1–2 and 9–10).
4. Whether or not America is a Christian nation: the word of God shall endure forever (Deuteronomy 18:15–19; Psalm 119:89; Isaiah 40:6–8; Matthew 24:35; Mark 13:31; Luke 21:33; John 6:63 and 68, 7:16–18, 8:26–28, 12:47–50, 14:19, and 15:15; Acts 3:19–26; Hebrews 4:12; I Peter 1:23–25).
5. Whether or not America is a Christian nation: God shall be faithful forever (Numbers 23:19; Joshua 21:45; II Corinthians 1:18–20; Romans 3:3–4; II Timothy 2:13).
6. Whether or not America is a Christian nation: God shall reign over America, all other nations, and everything else in creation forever (Psalms 29:10, 45:6, 93:1–2, 96:10, 97:1, 99:1, and 146:10; Lamentations 5:19; Daniel 7:13–14; Matthew 28:18; Acts 10:36; I Corinthians 15:24–25; Ephesians 1:20–22; I Timothy 6:13–16; Hebrews 1:8; Revelation 4:1–11, 11:15, 17:14, and 19:15).
7. Whether or not America is a Christian nation: we who follow the Lord Jesus Christ in this world are "strangers and pilgrims" (I Peter 2:11), and should bear in mind that "here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come" (Hebrews 13:14): "the holy city, new Jerusalem" (Revelation 21:1–2).