Power. Fear. Violence. These three idols of Christian nationalism are corrupting American Christianity. Andrew Whitehead is a leading scholar on Christian nationalism in America and speaks widely on its effects within Christian communities. In this book, he shares his journey and reveals how Christian nationalism threatens the spiritual lives of American Christians and the church.
Whitehead shows how Christians harm their neighbors when they embrace the idols of power, fear, and violence. He uses two key examples–racism and xenophobia–to demonstrate that these idols violate core Christian beliefs. Through stories, he illuminates expressions of Christianity that confront Christian nationalism and offer a faithful path forward.
American Idolatry encourages further conversation about what Christian nationalism threatens, how to face it, and why it is vitally important to do so. It will help identify Christian nationalism and build a framework that makes sense of the relationship between faith and the current political and cultural context.
Andrew L. Whitehead (PhD, Baylor University) is associate professor of sociology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, where he codirects the Association of Religion Data Archives at the Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture. He is the coauthor of Taking America Back for God: Christian Nationalism in the United States, which won the 2021 Distinguished Book Award from the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion. Whitehead has written for the Washington Post, NBC News, Time, and Religion News Service and speaks frequently about Christian nationalism.
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