Front cover image for America's God : from Jonathan Edwards to Abraham Lincoln

America's God : from Jonathan Edwards to Abraham Lincoln

Religious life in early America is often equated with the fire-and-brimstone Puritanism best embodied by the theology of Cotton Mather. Yet, by the nineteenth century, American theology had shifted dramatically away from the severe European traditions directly descended from the Protestant Reformation, of which Puritanism was in the United States the most influential. In its place arose a singularly American set of beliefs. In America's God, Mark Noll has written a biography of this new American ethos. In the 125 years preceding the outbreak of the Civil War, theology played an extraordinarily important role in American public and private life. Its evolution had a profound impact on America's self-definition. The changes taking place in American theology during this period were marked by heightened spiritual inwardness, a new confidence in individual reason, and an attentiveness to the economic and market realities of Western life. Vividly set in the social and political events of the age, America's God is replete with the figures who made up the early American intellectual landscape, from theologians such as Jonathan Edwards, Nathaniel W. Taylor, William Ellery Channing, and Charles Hodge and religiously inspired writers such as Harriet Beecher Stowe and Catherine Stowe to dominant political leaders of the day like Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln
eBook, English, 2002
Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2002
Church history
1 online resource (xiii, 622 pages)
9780195151114, 9780198034414, 0195151119, 0198034415
Introduction : theology and history
Theology in colonial America
The long life and final collapse of the Puritan canopy
Republicanism and religion : the American exception
Christian republicanism
Theistic common sense
Colonial theologies in the era of the Revolution
Innovative (but not "American") theologies in the era of the Revolution
The evangelical surge ..
... and constructing a new nation
Ideological permutations
Assumptions and assertions of American theology
The Americanization of Calvinism : contexts and questions
The Americanization of Calvinism : the congregational era, 1793-1827
The Americanization of Calvinism : explosion, 1827-1860
The Americanization of Methodism : the age of Asbury
The Americanization of Methodism : after Asbury
The "Bible alone" and a reformed, literal hermeneutic
The Bible and slavery
Failed alternatives
Climax and exhaustion in the Civil War
Conclusion : contexts and dogma