Acton Institute Powerblog

A Divine Tipping Point

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“America has never been a Christian nation. America was founded on an attempt to integrate Judeo-Christian values with Enlightenment ideas of self-government. What I’m envisioning is a divine tipping point or critical mass.”

So says Richard Land, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. He was discussing his new book, Imagine! A God-Blessed America: How It Could Happen and What It Would Look Like, and was responding negatively when asked whether his book’s thesis is “dependent on America being a Christian nation” (presumably meaning the embodiment of an explicitly Christian political order).

When referring to a “divine tipping point or critical mass,” I can only hope and presume that Land is talking about the largescale conversion of Americans to a dedicated and authentic form of biblical Christianity. This is likely what he means when he says, “We may look back and say that America entered what is either a revival or an awakening sometime in the late 20th or early 21st century.”

Jordan J. Ballor Jordan J. Ballor (Dr. theol., University of Zurich; Ph.D., Calvin Theological Seminary) is a senior research fellow and director of publishing at the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion & Liberty, where he also serves as executive editor the Journal of Markets & Morality. He is author of Get Your Hands Dirty: Essays on Christian Social Thought (and Action) (Wipf & Stock, 2013), Covenant, Causality, and Law: A Study in the Theology of Wolfgang Musculus (Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2012) and Ecumenical Babel: Confusing Economic Ideology and the Church's Social Witness (Christian's Library Press, 2010), as well as editor of numerous works, including Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology. Jordan is also associate director of the Junius Institute for Digital Reformation Research at Calvin Theological Seminary. He has authored articles in academic publications such as The Journal of Religion, Scottish Journal of Theology, Reformation & Renaissance Review, and Journal of Scholarly Publishing, and has written popular pieces for newspapers including the Detroit News, Orange County Register, and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. In 2006, Jordan was profiled in the book, The Relevant Nation: 50 Activists, Artists And Innovators Who Are Changing The World Through Faith. Jordan's scholarly interests include Reformation studies, church-state relations, theological anthropology, social ethics, theology and economics, and research methodology. Jordan is a member of the Christian Reformed Church in North America (CRCNA), and he resides in Jenison, Michigan with his wife and three children.