‘Exporting Garbage to the Nations’: Conservative Christian Rifts Spreading Like Cracked Glass

The conservative Christian base of the Republican Party has never been as monolithic as it sometimes seems. This has recently been on vivid display in Pennsylvania, where rifts among conservative evangelical Christians are spreading like cracked glass. 

The flashpoint was a full page essay by Chris Hume, the managing editor of The Lancaster Patriot a weekly newspaper, which is not available online (but Hume’s essay is posted here) in which he denounced neo-charismatics generally, and prophet Julie Green—who had appeared at a number of Doug Mastriano campaign and ReAwaken America events—in particular.  

Hume calls her a “false prophet” and a “false teacher.” He repeated his charges in a November podcast just before the election, in conversation with Joel Saint, a regional Christian Reconstructionist leader and Pastor of Independence Reformed Bible Church in Morgantown. In their view, Christianity is being used as a “political prop” by ReAwaken America and the MAGA movement. 

Even as the paper denounced fellow evangelicals and conservatives whom they deemed compromised in November of 2022, Dave Stoltzfus, the CEO of The Lancaster Patriot had to try to explain his way out of apparent compromises of his own [1:15-4:30] during the same month. Addressing “The Future of Christendom” conference, Stoltzfus’s story is as spooky as it sounds.

The great unraveling

The Lancaster Reconstructionists aren’t the only ones taking aim at the NAR’s approach to theology and politics, as the efforts at evangelical unity continue to unravel. National leaders in the Reconstructionist camp have also taken notice.

Nevertheless, we’ve already learned so much about the roles of some NAR figures in the January 6th insurrection—that the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol ignored. And yet, in the wake of the January 6th insurrection, it still matters that Dominionist factions are contending for power and influence, even as the movement is fracturing, and that foreign political interests continue to seek to influence U.S. religion and politics. 


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