Franklin, TN

Franklin Pastor Calls on Evangelicals to Stand Up Against Christian Nationalism

Advocate Andy

Pastor suggests radical ideology is rooted in racial oppression

A Franklin pastor is speaking out and challenging his fellow ministers to join him in opposition to what he calls a radical ideology being embraced in some evangelical churches.

Rev. Dr. Kevin Riggs, pastor of Franklin Community Church, shared his plea after returning from a conference of clergy studying the rise of a strain of Christian Nationalism in churches.

“It is time the evangelical church takes a stand against the heretical and anti-democratic ideology called White Christian Nationalism that has infiltrated our churches and is destroying our country and state," Riggs said. "We are living in a time that greatly parallels Germany in the 1930s. If we as evangelical church leaders don’t speak up now, like the evangelical church in Germany did not speak up then, we will regret our complicity. The urgency of the moment cannot be overstated." 

Rev. Robert Schenck, one of the organizers of the event Riggs attended, said it is imperative that evangelical leaders speak out now to quell the dangers Christian Nationalism poses to the church as a whole and to the communities churches serve.

“The greatest present danger to the church, to Christian witness and unity, the vulnerable, whom we are charged to honor, protect, and, in many ways, emulate, and to human flourishing as a whole, is racialized forms of nationalism, predominantly, white, so-called ‘Christian’ nationalism," Schenk said.

Christian Nationalism is a theological teaching that suggests that Christianity should not just inform government, but that a nation's laws and policies should be rooted in primarily Christian teachings to the exclusion of any other faith traditions. Its proponents in America tend to embrace a conservative political stance and seek the elimination or minimization of political disagreement.

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Andy Spears is a middle Tennessee writer and policy advocate. He reports on news around public policy issues - education, health care, consumer protection, and more.

Nashville, TN

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