While evangelical Christians nervously were wringing their hands, most did little to rise to the spiritual challenge. In fact, their naivete fueled intellectual laziness and biblical illiteracy. Pulpits continued to preach weightless sermons, musicians started writing meaningless feel-good choruses, while business model programs were developed in an attempt to breathe life back into the church. However, little to no time was dedicated to developing the Christian mind in the lives of the faithful to prepare them for the onslaught against truth that was to come.
There was a time in America when Christianity had the presumption, that is to say, Christianity was considered true, and all other religions were measured against it. During that time Christians were happy with religious freedom because they were majority voice. It was assumed that Christianity was the unofficial religion of America and so it would ever be. Arguments for that conclusion were made by claiming those who came to the new country were Christians seeking freedom to practice their religion. It is true that a case can be made that that was at least in part right.
Furthermore, it is also true that America’s primary political documents were heavily influenced by Christian principles. Undoubtedly this explains the presence of the Decalogue on the Supreme Court building.
Furthermore, in reading primary documents of the Founding Fathers the truth of Christianity was clearly on their minds even if all did not subscribe to a personal faith in Christ. So, I think it fair to give the argument that Christianity had a strong presence in the life of America its due.
The question is, however, how did that give Christianity a permanent status as more people immigrated to this country or how could it guarantee that children born of Christian parents would necessarily choose the Christian way?
Unfortunately, over the last 70 years, there has been a thinning out of the Christian voice in American culture and today many young people growing up in the church are choosing to walk away when they become of age. This has led to frantic attempts by evangelicals to court the younger generation by making the church worldly friendly, that is to make the church look and sound much like the world. This is done in spite of courting theological treason. I suppose many Christians who belonged to the greatest generation (Tom Brokaw’s term) evangelical Christians in America thought it would always be religiously as it had been. Even in face of seismic cultural changes signaling the loss of many traditional beliefs, evangelicals held out hope that it was only a cultural ‘phase.’