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A Judeo-Islamic Nation: The Evolution of America's Political Theology

Overview

What religion do American "Christians" really believe in?

Since the 4th century AD, true-to-the-Gospel Christianity has been a scarce commodity. Believers have always desired a religion more practical than the one in the Book - so much so that among politically active believers, Christianity long ago morphed into a religion more in line with the basic themes of Judaism and Islam (land, prosperity, justice, self-governance, and self-defense) than with the passive fatalism of ...

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A Judeo-Islamic Nation: The Evolution of America's Political Theology

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Overview

What religion do American "Christians" really believe in?

Since the 4th century AD, true-to-the-Gospel Christianity has been a scarce commodity. Believers have always desired a religion more practical than the one in the Book - so much so that among politically active believers, Christianity long ago morphed into a religion more in line with the basic themes of Judaism and Islam (land, prosperity, justice, self-governance, and self-defense) than with the passive fatalism of Jesus and Paul. And since its beginnings in colonial New England, the American version of this Judeo-Islamic faith has continued to evolve, being reshaped time and again by the forces of history, national character, and even by advances in technology.

A Judeo-Islamic Nation presents a new kind of religious criticism. Written by a scientist and nonbeliever, it presents an analysis intended not to defeat or marginalize religion, but simply to emphasize its human, evolving nature. A Judeo-Islamic Nation was written to stimulate a richer, more productive conversation between believers and nonbelievers, and between American Christians and Muslims.

"This is a thoughtful examination of the role of religion in American public life. It shows how recent trends challenge both the traditional notion that religion is a private matter as well as the notion of a civil religion that unites everyone in the faith of Americanism."

-Mark Juergensmeyer, Professor of Sociology, University of California, Santa Barbara, author of Global Rebellion: Religious Challenges to the Secular State

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Editorial Reviews

The Journal of the Council for Secular Humanism
Thomas Mates offers an elegantly written account of America's fevered religious history and the state of faith on today's political scene...A Judeo-Islamic Nation is a lucid and sagacious book that offers a coherent alternative interpretation of America's religio-political history. Highly recommended.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781936780761
  • Publisher: Mill City Press
  • Publication date: 8/2/2011
  • Pages: 248
  • Sales rank: 924,947
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

Thomas E. Mates, Ph.D., is a materials scientist at the University of California, Santa Barbara. After completing his scientific education he began to study the history and public applications of religion. His particular area of interest has been the conflict between the ideal of religion as a source of moral absolutes, and the reality that each believer invents his or her own creed. Several of his articles on religion and society have appeared in The Humanist and Free Inquiry magazines; this is his first book.
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