Peter J. Leithart on the God who is worldly:
Summarizing a central argument of his Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics, Ross Douthat told Ken Myers in a recent interview, “A lot of the most influential theologies in American life today are theologies that take various worldly ends as their primary end.” Prosperity preachers turn seven-figure incomes and slick cars into sacramental marks of God’s favor. Oprah religion reduces God to a guarantor of “personal psychological well-being.” Nationalisms of the left and the right invoke God to sanctify policy agendas.
Also today, Matthew Cantirino on whether the highbrows killed culture:
Fred Siegel has a piece in the latest issue of Commentary in which he argues that “highbrows” are responsible for “[killing] culture.” It’s an intriguing thesis, and one not without merit as it applies to the United States. Unfortunately, though, the essay turns on the misguided contention that the pre-World War II European elite articulated an argument that was fundamentally the same as (or, at best, a direct precursor to) the postwar left’s attack on middle-American kitsch.