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Letters to an American Christian av Bruce…
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Letters to an American Christian (utgåvan 2018)

av Bruce Riley Ashford (Författare)

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702307,684 (4)Ingen/inga
What does it mean to be an American Christian? In Letters to an American Christian , Bruce Riley Ashford, author of One Nation Under God , addresses overarching issues of the relationship of Christianity and politics, speaks to the way historic Christian belief informs specific hot-button political issues, and challenges readers to take seriously both our heavenly and earthly citizenships. Written as a series of letters to "Christian"--a young college student who is a new believer-- Letters to an American Christian will help every reader think carefully about how Christianity informs what it means to be an American. In the midst of a rapidly changing national and political landscape, Letters to an American Christian reminds us of two important truths: we cannot afford to shrink away from our earthly citizenship, and we cannot afford to lose sight of our heavenly citizenship.… (mer)
Medlem:bheathesq
Titel:Letters to an American Christian
Författare:Bruce Riley Ashford (Författare)
Info:B&H Books (2018), 256 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
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Letters to an American Christian av Bruce Riley Ashford

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Letters to an American Christian
Bruce Riley Ashford

ISBN 978-1535905138
Pbk, 256 pp, £12.85
Publisher’s web page: http://www.bhpublishinggroup.com/products/letters-to-an-american-christian

In Letters to an American Christian, Ashford, professor of Professor of Theology and Culture at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, has done the Christian world a great service. He has, in a clear accessible way, provided an excellent introduction to many contemporary political and ethical issues from a broadly kuyperian perspective. I say broadly because not all kuyperians - me included - would agree with all of his positions (and I’m not sure Kuyper would either).

The letter format, which Ashford adopts, is a well recognised literary trope from Diego de San Pedro’s Prison of Love in 1845 to C.S. Lewis’s Screwtape and more recently, Jamie Smith’s Letters to a Young Calvinist. Ashford has utilised this approach to great effect. Ashford’s letters are written to Christian, a (fictional) new Christian studying political science and journalism at the (left-leaning) university of DuPont. He is also an intern at a conservative news outlet.

The book has three parts thee parts. The first deals with ‘A Christian view of politics and public life’. The second with ‘A Christian view of hot-button issues’, this includes letters on religious liberty, free speech, racism, gun regulation and transgender. The final section, part three, deals with ‘A Christian hope for American politics’.

The first part is an excellent introduction to a Christian view of politics and culture. I have mapped this part: http://stevebishop.blogspot.com/2018/05/letters-to-american-christain-bh.html.

Here Ashford poses and answers some important questions. Questions such as such religion and politics mix? Is politics good? Does the gospel affect political policies? Does Christianity have anything to do with culture? Does the church have a role to play in politics? He answers all in the affirmative. He draws upon Kuyper’s sphere sovereignty and Kuyper’s distinction between the church as organism (scattered) and organisation (gathered). This section concludes with a discussion and critique of the ideologies of liberalism, conservatism, nationalism and socialism.

In Part 2 he looks at several important hot-potato issues. These include free speech, political correctness, abortion, racism, small and big government, gun legislation, homosexuality, transgender, immigration, global warming, war and fake news - the contents itemised below show the range of topics covered. Inevitably, in such a short space justice can’t be done to all these issues, nevertheless, Ashford makes as an excellent attempt at mapping the options and alternative approaches. I wouldn’t agree with all his points, particular his approach to gun legislation and to his slight reservation about global warming, for example.

Ashford is sensitive to both the scriptures and to culture - his approach is well grounded. There is, for example, no trite biblicism, such as cities had walls in the Bible, so we should build a wall across the Mexican border. Ashford’s approach is far more nuanced. For those who want to know what a Christian approach to many contemporary issues, this book will be a great place to begin.

CONTENTS
Part 1: A Christian View of Politics and Public Life
Chapter 1: No Public Nudity, Please
What is the relationship between religion and politics?
Chapter 2: The Good of Politics
Is politics a necessary evil or a positive good?
Chapter 3: Jesus Is Lord and Congress Is Not
What does the gospel have to do with politics?
Chapter 4: Christianity Is Not Our Side Hustle
What does Christianity have to do with culture?
Chapter 5: The One Political Rally American Christians Shouldn’t Skip
Where can I go to learn to be a good citizen?
Chapter 6: Swim in Your Own Lane, Please
What is the best way to think of the relationship between church and state?
Chapter 7: Let God Be True and Every Ideology a Liar
To which political ideology should I subscribe?

Part 2: A Christian View on Hot-Button Issues
Chapter 8: If You Can Keep It
What is so important about religious liberty?
Chapter 9: There Are No Safe Spaces in the Real World
Why should I value free speech?
Chapter 10: Unborn Lives Matter
Why shouldn’t a woman have the right to choose?
Chapter 11: Black Lives Matter
What should I think of the Black Lives Matter movement?
Chapter 12: Nobody Throws a Tantrum like a Politically Correct American
What’s so wrong with political correctness?
Chapter 13: Beware the Giant Octopus
Which is better: “small government” or “big government”?
Chapter 14: No Need for Mullahs at 1 First Street
What is all the ruckus about Supreme Court interpretation?
Chapter 15: Hitting the Bull’s-Eye on Gun Legislation
How do I navigate the debate about restrictions on gun ownership?
Chapter 16: The Best Education for a Twenty-First-Century American
What’s so “great” about the great books?
Chapter 17: One Man and One Woman
How should I respond to Obergefell?
Chapter 18: To Shave a Yak
Should I be concerned about the environment?
Chapter 19: What Hath Justice to Do with Mercy?
Why are Christians so divided about immigration reform?
Chapter 20: I Pledge Allegiance
What should I think about the surge of “nationalism” in the United States?
Chapter 21: Pray for Peace, Prepare for War
What does it mean to engage in a “just war”?
Chapter 22: Restoring the Self
What is a Christian view of gender dysphoria and the transgender movement?
Chapter 23: Fake News and Alternative Facts
How can I orient myself in a posttruth political environment?

Part 3: A Christian Hope for American Politics
Chapter 24: If You Can Keep It (Reprise)
If “Christian” is my primary identity, does “American” even matter?
Chapter 25: Recovering the Lost Art of Christian Persuasion
How should we relate to people who believe differently from us?
Chapter 26: Public Witness from the Political Margins
How should we respond to the marginalization of historic Christianity? ( )
  stevebishop.uk | Jul 23, 2020 |
I expected to either love this, or hate it...yet here we are and I'm undecided... Still, this book does bring up some good points, but lacks the direct biblical backing to support them. Yes, many if not all of these things are mentioned in the Bible, but this book never fact-checks in a way that readers can easily see where the author's referring to, or coming from. Also it talks as if 'Christian' is a person having a conversation, but the letters are all from the author, and in the way they are written they came across as one sided, lacking the perspective of the other half of the conversation. While I liked that Ashford didn't pull his punches or shy away from tough topics, I feel the presentation and method could have used a bit more work.a

*I received a copy from the publisher. This does not affect my review. This review is voluntary.* ( )
  Shadow494 | Jan 10, 2020 |
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What does it mean to be an American Christian? In Letters to an American Christian , Bruce Riley Ashford, author of One Nation Under God , addresses overarching issues of the relationship of Christianity and politics, speaks to the way historic Christian belief informs specific hot-button political issues, and challenges readers to take seriously both our heavenly and earthly citizenships. Written as a series of letters to "Christian"--a young college student who is a new believer-- Letters to an American Christian will help every reader think carefully about how Christianity informs what it means to be an American. In the midst of a rapidly changing national and political landscape, Letters to an American Christian reminds us of two important truths: we cannot afford to shrink away from our earthly citizenship, and we cannot afford to lose sight of our heavenly citizenship.

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