The “Threat” of Christian Nationalism

Event start date

November 16, 2022

Since 2006, there has been a steady stream of articles and books warning of the dangers of Christian nationalism. The stream became a flood with the election of Donald Trump and, especially, the January 6 attack on the Capitol which was, according to the sociologist Samuel Perry, “as Christian nationalist as it gets.” Perry’s coauthor Andrew Whitehead avers that Christian nationalism is “an existential threat to American democracy and the Christian church in the United States.” Similarly, Andrew Seidel claims that it is an “existential threat to a government of the people, for the people, and by the people.”

In this talk on November 16, Mark David Hall will argue that most of the literature on Christian nationalism is written by polemicists and need not be taken seriously. A few recent books have been authored by academics who have made a good faith effort to understand the phenomenon, but they vastly overstate its threat. Even so, American Christian nationalism exists, and it is problematic. Hall will then offer an improved definition of the phenomenon, consider how many Americans embrace it, and assess the extent to which it is a threat to America’s constitutional order. Finally, he will conclude by offering both prudential, biblical, and theological reasons for rejecting Christian nationalism.

There will be a reception at 6:00 PM ET and the lecture will begin at 6:30 PM ET. Tickets to attend are $10 and can be purchased here.