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The role of Evangelical Christianity in American public life is controversial. The mythology of America as a “Christian nation” and the promissory note of secularism have proved inadequate to cope with the increasing pluralism, the resilience of spirituality, and the wariness toward formal religion that mark our post-secular age. Christianity and democracy have a complex history together, but is there a future where these two great traditions draw the best out of one another? What does that future look like in a heterogeneous society? Sanders argues that democracy is stronger when it allows all of its religious citizens to participate fully in the public sphere, and Christianity is richer when it demonstrates the wisdom of God from the ground up, rather than legislating it from the top down. In this reality, the Evangelical church must return to Christianity’s prophetic roots and see itself as a “community in exile,” where participation in the political is important, but not ultimate–where the substantive work of the church happens “after the election.“
“Ron Sanders’, After the Election, is an extraordinary book, filled with sound analysis, charitable engagement, and wisdom . . . Religious discourse needs the pressure of the democratic concern for every citizen, and our democratic processes need the ‘thicker’ ethics that religious life provides. This book is the place to start in order to think well about religion and politics.”
–Gregory E. Ganssle, Professor of Philosophy, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University (more…)