*Christianity Today*: America is a “Great and Terrible Nation”

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Mark Galli, the editor in chief of Christianity Today, makes it abundantly clear that America was not founded as a Christian nation.  Here is a taste of his July 4th editorial:

The point is this: Can we in any way, shape, or form say that America was founded on Christian principles when its very existence and prosperity were set on a foundation of unimaginable cruelty to millions of other human beings?

This is not to say that America has practiced unparalleled evil in world history. Every nation has sins it needs to repent of. The irony of American history is that a nation founded on subjugation and cruelty nonetheless became a land of freedom and opportunity for millions. It has been and continues to be a beacon of light for refugees across the world. Our economic and justice systems, for all their flaws, make it possible for people to prosper in ways unimaginable in most of the world today. And yes, a few prophetic Christians in their day spoke up about the injustices perpetrated on Native Americans and blacks. And nearly all Americans today deeply regret how we have treated Native Americans, blacks, Chinese, Japanese, and a host of other ethnic and cultural minorities in the past, and most of us rightly continue to deplore injustice in any form—whether it be toward ethnic and racial minorities or (to name one especially grievous injustice) developing children killed before birth.

In short, the United States is a nation like all others, in some ways blessed by God, in some ways standing under God’s judgment. And so it shall be until the Lord returns.

On this and every Independence Day, we can thank God for the many blessings we enjoy, undeserved as they are. We can also repent of the ways we have denied the very values we proclaim in our founding documents and in our Pledge of Allegiance, in which we hold out the ideal of a nation that practices “liberty and justice for all.”

Read the entire piece here.

2 thoughts on “*Christianity Today*: America is a “Great and Terrible Nation”

  1. A good article. Of course the people who walked this land in the 16th, 17th and 18th century all thought differently about various ethnic classes – whether this was to ease their conscience for what was being done, or because they truly believed in privileged race can be hard to know for certain. There were people who knew it was wrong even back then, so it seems all people should have know this. I believe we need to remember the sins so that we do not repeat them, but I disagree that we should continue to denigrate ourselves as a nation over the failings of our for fathers. We cannot make the past right and we cannot erase the tarnish. The best we can do is make the future right by doing the right thing everyday.

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  2. Given the ways our nation has mistreated people here and abroad, July 4 should also be a national day of repentance.

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