Episode #259

Scandalous Witness

Guest: Lee Camp

Series: Crackers and Grape Juice

Host: Jason Micheli

May 22, 2020

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“One major reason Christianity in America has been made into a bad public joke is our failure to rightly understand what Christianity is.”

Our guest this week is Lee Camp, Professor at Lipscomb University in Nashville and host of the popular Tokens Show in Nashville. Check out his website: https://www.leeccamp.com

His latest book is Scandalous Witness: A Little Political Manifesto for Christians.

Fifteen propositions for changing Christianity in America

Christian identity is in moral and political crisis. Lee Camp writes “that one major reason Christianity in America has been made into a bad public joke is our failure to rightly understand what Christianity is.” Scandalous Witness provides a way forward. Although refusing to reduce Christianity to any partisan agenda, he reminds us that the gospel is inherently political and that we are called to be political witnesses.

Camp’s provocative diagnosis is that “American hope” is a bastardized form of Christian hope. The United States is not the hope of the world nor is it a Christian nation. Rather, “American Christian values” corrupts Christianity, and partisanship mocks the true scandal of the gospel. Camp reminds us that all empires fall.

By conceiving Christianity as a politic instead of a religion, we may begin to take seriously the true scandal of the gospel. We may envision new possibilities by which our gospel practices make a new world possible. Offering a robust vision of a Christian politic that exposes modern parodies of faith, Camp mixes wit, charm, and logic, challenging Christians to rethink who they are and how they participate in the modern world. In it, Camp unpacks 15 propositions:

Proposition 1: History Is Not One Damn Thing after Another

Proposition 2: The End of History Has Already Begun

Proposition 3: American Hope Is A Bastard

Proposition 4: Christianity Is Neither A Prostitute Nor A Chaplain

Proposition 5: The United States Is Not the Hope of the World

Proposition 6: The United States Was Not, Is Not, and Will Not Be a Christian Nation

Proposition 7: How Christian Values, and the Bible, Corrupt Christianity

Proposition 8: Every Empire Falls

Proposition 9: Christian Partisanship is Like a Fist-Fight on the Titanic

Proposition 10: Hostile Forces Have a Role in the Unfolding of History

Proposition 11. Christianity Is Not a Religion; Christianity Is a Politic

Proposition 12: Liberal Political Puissance Is Not the Goal

Proposition 13: Exemplary Political Witness Is the Goal

Proposition 14: Christianity Is Not Counter-Cultural

Propositions 15: Christian Engagement Must Always Be Ad Hoc

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