Interesting article in the Baptist Standard newsletter online here.
Recently, Dallas Baptist University professor Stephen Stookey took on David Barton’s view of Christian America and linked it with Mormon theology in a way that I had not considered. He also distills three possible reasons for Barton’s appeal.
Three factors lead Christian evangelicals to buy into the Mormon-influenced vision of Christian America expounded by Skousen and promoted by Beck, Stookey asserted:
• Historical ignorance. “In general, Americans tend to have minimal knowledge about the details of American history. We highly value our Founders and want to think the best of them. We are familiar with elements of Christianity’s history in the United States. Thus, it is easy to assume a golden age of Christianity once existed in the colonial and early federal period of our national story,” he said.
• Cultural tension. “The social upheaval of the mid-20th century has left many grasping for reasons as to why the moral compass of America appears off kilter,” he said. Liberal academicians, activist judges and liberal preachers offer easy targets. “Fear is a powerful motivator of the undereducated.”
• Political tensions. “The alleged culture wars appear to have accentuated political divisions—between Democrats and Republicans and within parties,” he said.
I am skimming the surface here, but I encourage you to read the article. Stookey’s descriptions of Barton matches up well with what I have found thus far.