Brushing off an idea from T.S. Eliot, the editor of First Things believes that America has two great strengths---liberal democratic culture and the free-market economy---and that these have turned her into a global superpower. Now it is imperative that we move on to higher things by encouraging self-sacrifice, responsibility, and group solidarity. 216 pages, hardcover. Regnery Faith.
America’s two greatest strengthsher liberal democratic culture and her free-market economyhave made her a global superpower. But left unchecked, these two strengths can become great cultural weaknesses, sowing selfishness, recklessness, and apathy. In Resurrecting the Idea of a Christian Society, theologian R. R. Reno argues that America needs a renewal of Christian idealsideals that encourage self-sacrifice, responsibility, and solidarity. Drawing on T.S. Eliot’s 1940 essay The Idea of a Christian Society,” Reno shows how Christianity encourages an abiding ambition for higher things” and a moral vision” that can strengthen communities and transform America into a truly great nation.
R. R. RENO, the editor of First Things, America’s leading journal of religion and public life, grew up in Maryland and attended Haverford College. After earning his doctorate in religious studies from Yale, he taught theology at Creighton University for twenty years. His previous books include In the Ruins of the Church, Fighting the Noonday Devil, and various scholarly works. He lives with his wife in New York City.
"R. R. Reno understands what many Christian public intellectuals today fail to see: that we live in post-Christian America, and we have to come to terms with that fact. Reno's analysis is sophisticated, but Resurrecting the Idea of a Christian Society is realistic, plainspoken, and compelling. Crucially, the book is not a counsel of despair, but rather a source of hope for faithful Christian resistance because it forthrightly deals with the nation as it truly is, not as old-school culture warriors wish it were."
ROD DREHER, senior editor of The American Conservative and author of The Benedict Option (forthcoming)
"This call to arms against a postmodern paganism should appeal not only to Christians. This humane, bold, learned book offers a vision of a modern America guided by a proper understanding of freedom. It can help give form and structure to the hopes of those of us who believe that the exhaustion of the West need not be terminal."
YUVAL LEVIN, editor of National Affairs and author of The Fractured Republic: Renewing America’s Social Contract in the Age of Individualism
"R. R. Reno is a compelling voice helping Christians and others to understand what’s happening in American culture, and why it matters. Reno is especially astute and prophetic on the way marriage and family revisions ravage the poor. This book will help equip the church to navigate the future without fear."
RUSSELL MOORE, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and author of Onward: Engaging the Culture without Losing the Gospel