Religion is a culture’s last stand against statism. Hillary and Podesto understand that. In their mind, religion must yield so that their new world can emerge.
Note with me that their real concern is Roman Catholicism, which maintains a full-throated supernaturalism, in a way that makes even Evangelical Protestants uncomfortable. Also, RC has more intellectual weight in its moorings in Natural Law Theory. It does some intellectually heavy lifting.
Evangelicals are pretty comfortable with “the Bible says.” The RC tradition, reliant upon Thomas Aquinas and Aristotle, insist that the Bible does not stand alone when it comes to truth, and so they have developed an entire stream of thought that insists that Truth is accessible to all people through rightly ordered reason. In my mind, they are correct, and it is just this barrier that has protected their supernaturalism against all that is thrown against it.
Podesta alludes to their intellectualism in his comments on wikileak, though he dismisses them. Hillary’s Methodism is so light a slight breeze can blow it off the table. E
Evangelicalism has no serious political theology and has not developed an intellectual tradition that has had much weight, at least at the level of political culture and law. It is not for no reason that the only self-identified Christians on the court are Roman Catholics.
Protestants’ “the Bible says” sounds in the ears of the leftist elite like “the Qur’an says.” Once one asserts that “the Bible says” when it comes to cultural discourse, there is nothing else left to say. The listener either buys in or doesn’t. And that’s the end of it. But when RC shifts the battle to reason and rightly ordered thinking, there is motion.
I am, of course, an Evangelical Protestant (I had to throw the “of course” in there for those of you who are not so sure). But no tradition is complete in and of itself. I think Evangelicals need to know that the RC is perceived of as the real enemy of the left, as it has been in Europe. The RCs are the largest denomination in America with 40 million, though all Protestants together far exceed that number on scales of tens of millions. But the RC hierarchy speak as a unit, which gives it a bit more force in the debate.