NASHVILLE, Tenn.—“God has more to do with America than Liberals may think, and less than Conservatives assume,” says Richard Land in his new book, _The Divided States of America? What Liberals AND Conservatives are Missing in the God-and-Country Shouting Match!_ (Thomas Nelson).
Richard Land dares to critique his own “side” as well as those who disagree with him on the role God has played in America’s past and the role God should play in America’s future. Land describes _The Divided States of America?_ as “an equal opportunity offender” with a constructive critique of all sides in this pivotal societal tug-of-war.
In what he calls the “God-and-country shouting match,” Land explores the heated debate between more traditional religious believers, those with a more liberal faith, and those hostile to religious faith.
“The country needs a new way to think about this question,” suggests Land. “When neither side is interested in listening to the other, but each side responds by shouting so loudly that their opponents either can’t or won’t listen, you generate a lot of heat, but very little light.” At the extremes of the debate, Land explains, are those who assume that America is God’s chosen nation and those who wish to purify the public square of any reference to God. Both positions are fraught with danger, he cautions.
_The Divided States of America?_ tackles questions that are sure to be reignited with the unofficial launch of the 2008 presidential race: “How should we address the concept of separation of church and state? How has religion influenced this country’s past, and why does it matter now? Does the U.S. have a special ‘role’ to play in the world, and how have U.S. presidents answered this question? In a pluralistic society, how do we strike the right balance in the role of religion in American public life?” The principle of religious freedom once united this country, Land maintains, warning it would be tragic if Americas allowed it to split the nation apart.
h2. About the Author
Dr. Richard Land, Princeton and Oxford educated, has served as president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission since 1988. Land has served three terms of service on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. In 2005, Land was featured in Time magazine as one of “The 25 Most Influential Evangelicals in America.”
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