“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other,” wrote America's 2nd president, John Adams. What exactly does it mean to be a moral and religious people? Was Adams referring to Christian virtues or just those who are civic minded? And was he right? Can our country operate properly, if at all, if we cease to be the sort of people he had in mind?
Lockean liberalism--the belief that humans have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness--is a secular enterprise. Since all humans have spiritual yearnings, a purely liberal worldview is incomplete. Therefore, those who live in a liberal society will always seek out some transcendental belief system, ideology, religion, or greater purpose. For centuries the West has turned to the Judeo-Christian faith as the only belief system that doesn’t ultimately undermine society. Yet today that the Judeo-Christian heritage is quickly becoming nothing more than a footnote in our history books.
Saving Elephants host Josh Lewis is joined again by Bob Burch to discuss what it means for the prospects of American democracy to continue into a post-Christian age. In full disclosure, Josh and Bob are both professing protestant Christians whose views are biased but fair. But whether you're a Christian or not, this series is an important discussion for anyone interested in liberal democracy and the long-term viability of our constitutional republic and the American experiment.