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Wayward Christian soldiers : freeing the…
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Wayward Christian soldiers : freeing the Gospel from political captivity (edició 2007)

de Charles Marsh

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In Wayward Christian Soldiers, leading evangelical theologian Charles Marsh offers a powerful indictment of the political activism of evangelical Christian leaders and churches in the United States. With emphasis on repentence and renewal, this important work advises Christians how tounderstand past mistakes and to avoid making them in the future.Over the past several years, Marsh observes, American evangelicals have achieved more political power than at any time in their history. But access and influence have come at a cost to their witness in the world and the integrity of their message. The author offers a sobering contrast betweenthe contemporary evangelical elite, which forms the core of the Republican Party, and the historic Christian tradition of respect for the mystery of God and appreciation for human fallibility. The author shows that the most prominent voices in American evangelicalism have arrogantly redefinedChristianity on the basis of partisan politics rather than scripture and tradition. The role of politics in distorting the Christian message can be seen most dramatically in the invasion of Iraq, he argues: Some 87% of American evangelicals supported going to war, while every single evangelicalchurch outside the United States opposed it. The Jesus who storms into Baghdad behind the wheel of a Humvee, Marsh points out, is not the Jesus of the Gospel. Indeed, not since the nazification of the German church under Hitler has the political misuse of Christianity led to such catastrophic globalconsequences.Is there an alternative? This book proposes that the renewal of American churches requires a season of concentrated attention to faith's essential affirmations--a time of hospitality, peacemaking, and contemplative prayer. Offering an authentic Christian alternative to the narcissistic pietyof popular evangelicalism, Wayward Christian Soldiers represents a unique entry into the increasingly pivotal debate over the role of faith in American politics.… (més)
Membre:NUMCLibrary
Títol:Wayward Christian soldiers : freeing the Gospel from political captivity
Autors:Charles Marsh
Informació:Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2007.
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:
Etiquetes:Evangelicalism, Politics

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Wayward Christian Soldiers: Freeing the Gospel from Political Captivity de Charles Marsh

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A new type of Christian pervades America today- the kind who sings “God Bless America”, “Battle Hymn of the Republic”, and “Onward Christian Soldiers” with the unending patriotic zeal formally reserved for religious zealots. They wear flag pins on their lapels, bald eagles festoon their ties, and Old Glory makes a surprise appearance as a scarf about their necks. Standing to attention before the flag, they proudly proclaim America to be “one nation under God… with liberty and justice for all”. In his book Wayward Christian Soldiers, Charles Marsh takes a step back from the politics in Christianity and challenges his readers to think about what values, truths, and standards Christians may be giving up in their ardor towards supporting the American way.

Marsh bases his book on the assumption that American Christianity has so inundated itself in the political realm that it no longer has a proper place for true spirituality. With that viewpoint firmly implanted in his mind, Marsh asks a valid question of his readers: “how can Christians begin to rebuild the church’s shattered witness after a time of compromise and accommodation?” Marsh is purporting a cry for silence, citing Bonheoffer’s writings as an example of the kind of silent faith Christians should embody- a faith, though silent, that can still speak volumes through lifestyle and actions. More to the point, he criticizes Americans in particular with destroying the tenuous credibility of Christianity. Americans have so meshed their spirituality with their patriotism that they “have turned God into an appendage of the American way of life”. Marsh reminds his readers that to be a Christian is to lose all sense of citizenship, to the point where Americanism must find itself buried within a strong sense of citizenship in Christ’s kingdom.

Marsh is an excellent writer and rhetorician. So precisely chosen are his words that he leaves the reader in no doubt as to his opinions on not only his own thoughts, but also the thoughts of others. The benefit of such prose is a book that is highly readable and engaging, with radical ideas couched in emotional terms which the reader should have little trouble embracing. However, there is a negative aspect to his impassioned appeals. By using language that so clearly articulates Marsh’s own feelings, the reader may find it difficult to cut through the rhetoric in order to decide for himself whether the claims that the book makes are valid.

In conclusion, Wayward Christian Soldiers is worth reading for the reason that Marsh is unafraid to state his thoughts about Christians and politics, even when those thoughts do not match up with what the Christian Right and mainstream media purport them to be. The discerning reader should easily be able to carve away Marsh’s opinions in order to weigh fully facts against facts without bias. Ultimately, this book puts forth a much-needed call to Christians for righteousness, truth, holiness, and silence in a noisy, Godless world. ( )
  MissWoodhouse1816 | Jan 7, 2010 |
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In Wayward Christian Soldiers, leading evangelical theologian Charles Marsh offers a powerful indictment of the political activism of evangelical Christian leaders and churches in the United States. With emphasis on repentence and renewal, this important work advises Christians how tounderstand past mistakes and to avoid making them in the future.Over the past several years, Marsh observes, American evangelicals have achieved more political power than at any time in their history. But access and influence have come at a cost to their witness in the world and the integrity of their message. The author offers a sobering contrast betweenthe contemporary evangelical elite, which forms the core of the Republican Party, and the historic Christian tradition of respect for the mystery of God and appreciation for human fallibility. The author shows that the most prominent voices in American evangelicalism have arrogantly redefinedChristianity on the basis of partisan politics rather than scripture and tradition. The role of politics in distorting the Christian message can be seen most dramatically in the invasion of Iraq, he argues: Some 87% of American evangelicals supported going to war, while every single evangelicalchurch outside the United States opposed it. The Jesus who storms into Baghdad behind the wheel of a Humvee, Marsh points out, is not the Jesus of the Gospel. Indeed, not since the nazification of the German church under Hitler has the political misuse of Christianity led to such catastrophic globalconsequences.Is there an alternative? This book proposes that the renewal of American churches requires a season of concentrated attention to faith's essential affirmations--a time of hospitality, peacemaking, and contemplative prayer. Offering an authentic Christian alternative to the narcissistic pietyof popular evangelicalism, Wayward Christian Soldiers represents a unique entry into the increasingly pivotal debate over the role of faith in American politics.

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