My critique of the court evangelicals is a natural extension of my ongoing criticism of conservative activist Barton and other Christian nationalist purveyors of the past. It is not a coincidence that First Baptist-Dallas pastor Robert Jeffress often preaches a sermon titled “America is a Christian Nation.” In this sermon he says. among other things:
We don’t restrict people’s right to worship [they can] worship however they choose to worship. But that doesn’t mean we treat all religions equally. This is a Christian nation. Every other religion is an impostor, it is an infidelity. That is what the United States Supreme Court said.
Someone can correct me, but I think First Baptist–Dallas is the largest Southern Baptist church in the world. Jeffress is an influential figure. He goes on Fox News and claims to represent American evangelicals. His profile has risen immensely since he announced his support of Trump.
It’s important to remember that Jeffress’s political theology (if you can call it that) is based on a false view of American history. And it is not very difficult to trace it to the teachings of Barton.
In the aforementioned sermon, Jeffress comments on a recent Barton visit to First Baptist–Dallas. He then says, referencing the prince of Aledo, Texas, that “52 of the 55 signers of the Constitution” were “evangelical believers.” This is problematic on so many levels. First, only 39 people signed the Constitution. Actually, I think Jeffress might be referring here to the men who signed the Declaration of Independence. Second, to suggest that most of them were “evangelical believers” is a blatant misrepresentation of history. In fact, Jeffress doesn’t even get Barton right here. Barton says (wrongly) that nearly all of the signers of the Declaration had Bible school and seminary degrees. Jeffress is confused about his fake history. But that doesn’t matter. People in his massive congregation applaud and cheer when he preaches this stuff.
Sunday, July 23, 2017
Why John Fea Does What He Does
He explains here. A taste: