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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

Trumpian Christian Nationalism Is Invisible to the Elite

 In Divided We Stand, we discuss how the cultural divides that helped Trump in 2016 and almost brought down the government in 2021.

 David French:

While there may be some Christian nationalists in seminaries, or in the pews of big, highly-educated suburban churches, or in the leadership of America’s largest denominations, you’re far more likely to find the true believers in exactly the kind of nondenominational, independent, and often-charismatic churches that populate the list of ReAwaken America tour stops.

Pentecostal Christianity, despite its immense size, is about as far from elite American culture as Mercury is from Mars. And this means it’s quite distant from elite Evangelical culture as well. Right-wing blue-check theologians and pastors who speak disdainfully of warnings about Christian nationalism because it’s not something they see in their churches never darken the door of a Pentecostal church.

They’re almost wholly unfamiliar with the world of “prophets” and “apostles” who have helped fuel much of the fervor for Trump. It’s no coincidence that Paula White, a pentecostal pastor herself, was Trump’s spiritual adviser. Trumpism penetrated pentecostalism early. I do not mean to say that all pentecostals are Trump supporters, much less Christian nationalists. But you can’t understand the Trumpist Christian core without understanding its pentecostal connection.