Monday, January 26, 2009

Christianity in America

Commenter David Raber over at Vox Nova comments on the extent to which the USA is a Christian country:

We might ask ourselves if the Christian religion has had much real effect at all on the way our government and society is organized. Do we have a society built more along the lines of Jesus’ teaching than say, that of ancient Rome? Well, we managed to get rid of slavery about a century and a half ago, and we don’t have gladitorial games anymore (not to the death, anyhow). So there’s that.

But to what degree are most people in their daily lives guided by Christian principles? We may have good intentions, but the fact is that we live in a world where such principles are virtually irrelevant.

For example, how do I love my neighbor as myself in a business transaction? Our whole economic system is based on the assumption that I will take my neighbor for just as much as I possibly can–”whatever the traffic will bear.”

Maybe one day we will figure out on the practical level how to live pretty much like followers of Jesus, with a lot less tolerance for everyday social sin; then perhaps we will look at our present system as something akin to gladitorial combat or slavery; but I don’t see that day coming soon.

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