Jesus and John Wayne: A Review

Jesus and John Wayne: A Review

Jesus and John Wayne: A Review 1000 667 Andrew Hicks

This book is a historical account of recent white evangelical history in the United States. I think every white, evangelical church goer should read this book! It subverted many assumptions I had about why evangelicalism thought and did certain things politically. The full title hints at what I learned from this –  Jesus and John Wayne:How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation.

This is not a book for the faint of heart evangelical. This book confronts many modern myths that alive and well in the evangelical world. This also deconstructs the ideology that made possible the evangelical support for Donald Trump. There are 16 chapters tracing the history of white evangelicalism starting in the beginning of the 20th century and ending with the election of Donald Trump in 2016.

The history is organized around the Christian obsession with the “man’s man” John Wayne and his political and religious involvement. The connections between John Wayne and white evangelicals through history are many. It may sound odd at first, but Du Mez does a masterful job of showing what has been hiding in plain sight for a long time.

If you enjoyed the recent podcast by Christianity TodayThe Rise and Fall of Mars Hill you will find this book to be a more thorough account of the larger cultural phenomenon that Mark Driscoll took advantage of to grow an evangelical empire. This book is willing to call out the varied roles that Christianity Today has played in the rise of the white evangelical power grab that allowed Donald Trump to waltz into the White House.

But Wait, There’s More!

  • Purchase your copy here.
  • Here is the Bible for Normal People episode with Du Mez.
  • Here is the Kingdom Roots podcast episode with Du Mez.
  • Here is the Theology in the Raw podcast episode with Du Mez.
  • Here is the first of a 4-part series of podcasts on Holy Post about the book.
  • Here is Du Mez’s site.

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