Justin Taylor, one of the bloggers mentioned in our editorial today, posted this quote from blogger Paul Ireland, which I think goes a long way to correcting the course of the “Glenn Beck is not a real Christian” discussion we found disheartening:

In the whole discussion about Mormonism, I think we’re missing a big part of what is going on with Glenn Beck. The problem is not simply Mormonism. The problem is idolatry.

People who follow Glenn Beck may not become Mormon and reject the Trinity, but they will likely follow his Americolatry—his worship of our nation. His view of life rises and falls on the state of our country. Christians I know who follow Beck quickly get pulled into his idolatrous fervor that declares that our nation can be our savior.

I call it “Christianism,” but “Americolatry” works, too. Binding up U.S. politics with religion is bound to corrupt faith regardless of whether a Mormon or an evangelical Christian is doing it. Evangelicals, who still don’t really get this, should be far more worried about their own America-worship than they are about Glenn Beck’s theological errors.

Credit to Taylor for setting the record straight on that point.

 
About The Author

David Sessions

David Sessions is the founding editor of Patrol, and is currently a doctoral student in modern European history at Boston College. His writing has appeared in The Daily Beast, Newsweek, Jacobin, Slate and elsewhere. Follow him on Twitter here.

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