Let’s be clear: a Christian Nationalist is not a person you want to be. But leave it to Christian Nationalists to embrace Christian Nationalism, and to make it look like the right thing to do.
A new book which echoes—and quotes—Ms. Greene’s sentiment has taken captive Religious Freedom Twitter after being self-published on Amazon on September 5th. Christian Nationalism: A Biblical Guide for Taking Dominion and Discipling Nations (not disciplining) was written by Andrew Torba, the CEO of Gab along with Andrew Isker. (This isn’t a great day for Andrews, I’m afraid.)
Gab, not to be confused with Truth Social, is described bluntly on Wikipedia as,
. . . a haven for neo-Nazis, racists, white supremacists, white nationalists, antisemites, the alt-right, supporters of Donald Trump, conservatives, right-libertarians, and believers in conspiracy theories such as QAnon, . . .
Does that sound Christian? To Torba, it does. This handbook seems like his way to use authentic-sounding Christianity to incite alarm among right-wing evangelicals and get them to migrate to Gab from Twitter, Netflix, and YouTube in order to plan their Christian Nationalist takeover.
Don’t believe me? Allow me to take you through the biggest points in Torba’s book.
Each state is its own country
This ridiculous idea was from the foreword by Catholic integralist Shane Schaetzel. Here’s a little bit to help you learn about him and his worldview:
Integralism, properly understood, allows for the complete and total integration of the Catholic faith into the realm of politics and government.Shane Schaetzel, I am a Catholic Integralist, 9/8/22
Of course, his admitting to be a Christian—or Catholic—Nationalist shouldn’t be a surprise in a book with that as the title. Personally, I’m just not used to seeing people wear the “integralist” badge loudly and proudly.
These United States of America are a Union of different states, and not a “country” in the proper understanding of the word. Rather, the states themselves are countries, according to the proper understanding, each consenting to delegate some of their own sovereign powers to the federal government for the sake of forming a Union.
. . .
As Christian Nationalists, we understand these United States of America were once a Union of Protestant Christian states. This is revealed in the original intent of the First Amendment (Bill of Rights) that prohibited the establishment of a federal religion, so as to respect the establishment of state religions which already existed before, during and after these United Sates [sic] were founded as a Union.Shane Schaetzel, Christian Nationalism, pp. 10-11
Remember that word “before”. It’ll be important later.
To be sure, Torba echoes this throughout the book:
The reason the newly founded United States Federal Government was forbidden from establishing a national state church was that the majority of the individual states already had their own established churches. . . . The point of the Establishment Clause was to retain the distinctive Christian heritage of the American nation not to destroy it.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 40
Christian Nationalists are the only True Christians
Schaetzel and Torba both discuss this twisted idea at length. I’ll start with what Schaetzel says about it in the foreword.
In the simplest terms, a Christian is a disciple of Jesus Christ who seeks to take dominion in all areas of life by obeying His commandment in the Great Commission to disciple all nations. A Christian loves his country—his place in the world—and because he loves his neighbor he seeks to take dominion and disciple it for the glory of God. . . .
A Christian is in the arena and waging active spiritual war on a daily basis. . . . A Christian man is masculine. A Christian woman is feminine.Shane Schaetzel, Christian Nationalism, p. 10
Torba echoes this idea in the beginning of Chapter 2:
The Great Commission means that if you are a Christian you are axiomatically a Christian Nationalist. If you say you are a Christian and you reject “Christian Nationalism,” you are just a disobedient Christian.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 37
Sorry Christians. I mean, I personally would have ended after “Jesus Christ” in that first definition, but what do I know? Schaetzel had stated bluntly in the foreword that “Christian Nationalism is loving your neighbor.”
Christian Nationalists aim to create a “parallel Christian society”
The most peculiar thing I found while reading this book was that the authors go fully mask-off about their Christian Nationalism and their dominionist plans while also beating around the bush and not always being explicit about what they mean.
They do plan to “take America back to its Christian roots,” but they don’t want to sound like they would overthrow the government or anything wacky like that. Instead, the plan is to essentially withdraw from society and lie in wait as they watch the secular liberal “Regime” fall. Schaetzel writes,
Christian Nationalism is a movement of rebuilding, reformation and revival. We are not trying to overthrow the existing state or even necessarily earn positions in its highest levels of power. We don’t need to because we are playing the long game and are busy building things that matter. The reality is that individual members of Congress and even Presidents have very little power to impact real and substantive societal and culture change, but news networks, activist organizations, corporations, tech companies, education systems, and social networks sure do. So that is exactly what we are building: a parallel Christian society.
. . .
Our primary goal is to build a parallel Christian society, economy, and infrastructure which will fill the vacuum of the failed secular state when it falls.Shane Schaetzel, Christian Nationalism, p. 22, 24
It makes a lot more sense if you keep in mind the millions of dollars that Torba makes when people use Gab as their primary source of news, social media, and entertainment.
It is important that I point out, however, that this is one of many points in which this book contradicts itself. Later, Torba writes,
If we are going to build a Christian movement it must be exclusively Christian and we can’t be afraid to say that out loud. We are all sinners saved by Grace, but if you do not repent and believe in Jesus Christ then you do not share our Biblical worldview and cannot participate in any meaningful position of authority in the movement. It’s just that simple. We recognize that many non-believers will be sympathetic to our movement and support our efforts to preserve and grow a Christian culture in a Christian country. That’s great and we welcome their support, but leadership and influential positions must be reserved exclusively for those who call Jesus Christ King.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 65-66
This book contains open threats
This isn’t really so much of a book review as me sharing what I discovered when I read it. I don’t think you really need me to tell you what I thought of it. The authors really do speak for themselves, and they do say the quiet part out loud. But they get one thing right: we should be scared.
Will I continue to fold to the faulty pietistic theology which has led us to the point where drag queen shows for pre-schoolers are commonplace? Or will I gladly accept the title of “Christian Nationalist” and obey Christ’s command to disciple the American nation into obeying what He has commanded?
What will Christ’s enemies do when tens of millions of American Christians choose the latter? What will happen to America when tens of millions of American Christians band together to take back their towns, cities, counties, states, and nation? What will the enemies of Christ do when America is no longer an apostate Christian nation but a faithful Christian nation once again? If you believe Jesus Christ is King over all the nations of the world—including the United States of America—you are the thing that keeps Christ’s enemies up at night.
Keep up the fight. The very fact that they are setting their sights on us means they know we are a threat. They know that the Gospel of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ is the threat. They will submit. They will bend the knee, either now or at the Final Judgment.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 44
Here are some other quotes with the same ominous energy.
Jesus gave us a mission: the Great Commission. We are to make disciples of all nations, including but not limited to the United States of America. Nothing and no one should stand in our way of accomplishing that mission in each and every nation on this planet.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 65
We are done being the footstool of the Enemy. We are done being pushovers. We are done with simply wanting to be left alone. Now we want to win. Win souls for Christ. Win elections. Win the culture. Win in the education system. Win with our own technology. Our own media. Our own entertainment. Win for the glory of God.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 66
Making Christian Nationalism appeal to everyday evangelicals
Except when he goes on those terrifying tirades, Torba also tries to sound like he’s just being a good Christian (which we see from his belief that the Christian thing to do is be a Christian Nationalist).
If we are going to win a spiritual war, we must dare to stand for God’s Truth in this post-truth world, but how do we do that? Be bold.
Boldly defend the sanctity of life in a world that praises child sacrifice. Boldly defend the holiness of marriage between one man and one woman as God designed. Boldly defend God’s creation and the unique roles and gifts God has given men and women. Boldly rebuke the Den of Vipers and their wicked ways. Most importantly: boldly share the Good News, the gospel of Jesus Christ.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 47
This doesn’t sound that different than what millions of white evangelicals probably heard from the pulpit just this morning. This could have come from the innocent-looking likes of Girl Defined or Paul and Morgan. But I would bet—or at least hope—that they are nowhere near as radical as Torba.
Christian Nationalism is not politics, it is spiritual warfare
In other words, don’t blame him, he’s just doing his duty as a Christian. Torba tries to paint this as an essentially apolitical stance that just so happens to be exactly what God wants. The left are the ones acting as political pundits.
We must lovingly and boldly rebuke Christians who reject Truth in favor of political allegiances and narratives and let God handle the rest. . . .
They have no recourse to fight back against you when you wield spiritual weapons against them. To smear and attack you they will need to smear and attack Jesus, and in doing so they will show their hand.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, pp. 47-49
Patriarchal family structure is key in Christian Nationalism
I’m about halfway through Jesus and John Wayne right now, so I wasn’t at all surprised to see this theme of masculine dominance of the household in Christian Nationalism.
Yes, we should absolutely reclaim every area of life as Christians including politics, but our primary focus and energy should be invested in rearing children and raising them to fear and love the Lord.
Ultimately the individual man must take dominion over his home. Over his wife and children. Over himself. Victory with this approach is inevitable. Our children will be homeschooled. Our children will not be attending drag shows. Our children will not be watching Netflix filth. They will not be tuning into Fox News or CNN. They will not be on Facebook. Our children’s children’s children must be our focus. They will reap the fruits of our labor, and so we labor on.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, pp. 69-70
That escalated quickly.
Later, Torba details just how important it is that children—well, sons—are raised right. (It doesn’t really matter what women do as long as they obey their husbands and not get abortions.)
Our sons will have been through the Classics, all of Greek Philosophy, the entire Bible, and know how to build things with their hands, shoot guns, grow food, hunt, fish, lift weights, and start a business by the time they are 18. They will be fishers of men who fear and worship the King of kings and Lord of lords. They will conquer, lead, and take dominion of all nations for the glory of God.
The world’s sons will be demoralized for 18 years in the demonic schools, propagandized by the enemy’s entertainment and “news” media, then sink into a mountain of debt slavery to be intellectually castrated by some marxist college. Next they will be hired by some woke corporation in the city or a beltway job where they can be lambasted and ruled over by some antichrist who hates them for the next forty years of their lives. We are not the same.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 106
The United States began with the colonies
We know that the Founding Fathers did not create a Christian nation. It was colonialist, it was capitalist, it was white supremacist, but it was not Christian. Ah, but our authors found a loophole: seeing colonial America and the country as declared independent in 1776 as one continuously Christian nation. Apparently the religious declarations of each individual colony need to apply to each state today. Why? Because they do!
But American history did not begin when the Bill of Rights was ratified, it began over two centuries before there ever was a U.S. Constitution. Far from being the beginning of America, that period is actually the middle of the history of the American people.
Anti-Christian historians never draw attention to the fact that there had been Christians who founded explicitly Christian colonies in America since 1585, when the first Roanoke Colony was attempted. Yes, the colonies that were founded 200 years before the U.S. Constitution was ratified were founded as Christian nations. Anti-Christian scholars and “experts” can balk all they want at “Christian Nationalism” bur the historical record is as clear as the noonday sun on a cloudless day—the American colonies were not founded as secular, pluralistic nations where there was absolute religious freedom, but as Christian nations for Christian people governed by Christians where they would have freedom to practice the Christian religion.Andrew Torba and Andrew Isker, Christian Nationalism, p. 106
Like I said, this post isn’t an in-depth analysis of this book and where it fits into the historical and political Christian Nationalism paradigm. I’m not debunking every word of Torba’s book because most of it is too painstakingly obvious that I think pointing out why would be a waste of my time.
It doesn’t take a theologian to know that Christian Nationalism is anti-Christian, nor does it take a political scientist to know that Christian Nationalism is anti-American. The Establishment Clause does separate church and state, and we are a secular nation. The amazing thing about America is that anyone is free to practice any faith they want. When Torba said America is “without question a Christian nation with a Christian super majority population and Christian historical roots,” he was dead wrong.