The New Christian Right, Christian Activism, Theology, and the Law
This chapter documents the growth of the Christian Reconstruction into an intellectual and political force during the 1970s and 1980s. It details the relationship between Rushdoony’s work as an education and legal reformer and a wider trend on the part of evangelical Protestants to engage in direct political activism. The narrative expands far beyond the legacy of Rushdoonian Christian Reconstruction to explore diverse expressions of the movement cultivated by his son-in-law Gary North, theologian Greg L. Bahnsen, and lawyer-activist John W. Whitehead. By tracing the interconnected work of these activists and many others, the chapter highlights the practical aspects of Reconstructionism by following its influence in politics, seminaries, and court cases across the United States. These Reconstructionist-inspired activists marshaled grassroots Christian revolts in local politics, in Christian higher education, and against America’s system of compulsory state education.
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