Can a Christian be patriotic?

Can a Christian be patriotic? For the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview, I’m John Stonestreet with The Point.

Years ago on BreakPoint, Chuck Colson pointed out how Americans used to openly embrace the Christian traditions and values that shaped our Republic. In that culture, it was easy for a Christian to be a patriot. Perhaps too easy. Vibrant, biblical faith could degenerate into a civil religion, where the country’s well-being and the expansion of God’s Kingdom were synonymous.

But today, many Americans have rejected the religious values that informed our society.

Where along this range of attitudes is true Christian patriotism?

Well, first, we mustn’t deify our country. We don’t wrap the flag around the cross. Our citizenship is in heaven, and that’s where our ultimate allegiance is.

But as Chuck said, we can’t love mankind in the abstract; we can only really love people in the particular, concrete relationships God has placed us in—our family, our church, our community, and our nation.

So celebrate this July Fourth by thanking God for calling us into His kingdom and allowing us to live in—and yes, love—this land of liberty.

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Comments

  • Bill Stevens  On July 4, 2017 at 7:44 pm

    Augustine expressed it so well so many years ago…that we are residents of two cities: our eternal home in the City of God & our residency in the City of man. Both Bonhoeffer and Archbishop Charles Chaput write well on this.
    I am distressed when we “wrap the flag around the cross, with Uncle Sam being our figure of God! Perhaps we are watching too much Fox News…!

  • lynzerin  On July 5, 2017 at 7:35 pm

    Couldn’t agree more! I’ve struggled with this in the past, debating in my head whether or not it’s okay to be patriotic. I definitely agree that we should not deify our country. By putting our trust and devotion in our country, we are forgetting who we truly belong to. Culturally, and in response to God’s goodness, I think it is great to respect our country!
    Thank you for sharing this!

  • tbc0  On July 6, 2017 at 1:06 am

    John’s 25-minute homily this past Sunday has even more to say about the tension between our faith and our patriotism. I was there. I highly recommend it. http://j.mp/2uMl3de

  • tbc0  On July 6, 2017 at 1:07 am

    Reblogged this on The Right to Write and commented:
    John’s 25-minute homily this past Sunday has even more to say about the tension between our faith and our patriotism. I was there. I highly recommend it. http://j.mp/2uMl3de

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