OK – I really need to hear from you on this one. Why exactly do we need an “American Patriot’s Bible?” I’ve always been uncomfortable that we so easily mix the church and nationalism (like fighter planes on the church video screens on the Fourth of July.) Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for God and country, but Christianity should transcend nationalism, not melt into it. Christianity should be counter-cultural and rise above all earthly governments. This Religion News Service article states:
“While some have praised the “Patriot’s Bible” others have condemned it as something akin to theological and political heresy.”
Evangelical author and pastor Greg Boyd’s lengthy critique, posted on Christianity Today’s Web site, calls Lee’s Bible “idolatrous,” saying, “There’s not a single commentary in this Bible that even attempts to shed light on what the biblical text actually means.” Lee says such criticisms misunderstand the purpose of the “Patriot’s Bible,” which is already in its second printing. “Another study Bible is not needed,” he said. “The purpose of this Bible is to go deeper in people’s understanding of the nation in which we live, from whence it came, and where it is going unless we return to the Scriptures.”
I’m all for a better understanding of our nation and where we came from. There’s no question about the motives of our founding fathers, or the role of Christianity in the birth of our nation. And we need to be unashamed when we acknowledge that. But to publish a Bible focused around that notion is really out there from my perspective. Dr. Richard Lee is a great pastor and I’m sure his intentions were the best. But we can honor our country without mixing it up with the scriptures.
What are your thoughts? Too far? Right on? I’m listening.