G.I. Messiahs: Soldiering, War, and American Civil Religion by Jonathan H. Ebel

By Jonathan H. Ebel

Jonathan Ebel has lengthy been attracted to how faith is helping participants and groups render significant the tense studies of violence and conflict. during this new paintings, he examines situations from the good warfare to the current day and argues that our notions of what it potential to be an American soldier aren't simply strongly spiritual, yet strongly Christian.

Drawing on an unlimited array of resources, he additional unearths the results of soldier veneration at the women and men so usually solid as heroes. Imagined because the embodiments of yankee beliefs, defined as redeemers of the kingdom, loved because the ones keen to undergo and die that we, the country, might live—soldiers have frequently lived in sophisticated yet major stress with civil spiritual expectancies of them. With chapters on fashionable squaddies prior and current, Ebel recovers and re-narrates the tales of the typical American women and men that stay and die at either the heart and edges of public realization.

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In short, this is not a story of orthodoxy crumbling under the pressure of ritual failures, of a Christological crisis, and of democratized engagement with soldierly sacrifice. It is not the story of civil religious paralysis in the face of complex moral and devastating martial realities. It is, rather, a story of contestation, adaptation, and reassertion. I have chosen these cases also because they are challenging as subjects of interpretation and because I am aware of the hazard of tautology posed by the study of a symbol.

Not the coming of a new word . . but the setting of the well known word in terms of flesh and blood. . ” As proof of the ongoing reality of incarnation, Heist asked the Methodists of Astoria to think about the recently concluded world war. “America spoke great words as she entered the war, words that have shone far and will be long remembered. But that which has given power to the words is that they became flesh; sacred flesh that lies buried in a soil once alien; clean flesh that marched and fought and suffered for the honor of the country and the safety of humanity.

But that which has given power to the words is that they became flesh; sacred flesh that lies buried in a soil once alien; clean flesh that marched and fought and suffered for the honor of the country and the safety of humanity. indb 27 8/20/15 5:47:12 PM 28 incarnating american civil religion paper. ” As Jesus Christ was to the Christian God, so was the American soldier to the United States of America. Flesh alone—mere bodies—whether moving through villages and teaching in parables or running through fields and brandishing weapons—would spread error or violence.

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