Documentary Aims to Expose and Challenge Christian Nationalism in America

WASHINGTON – A new documentary film titled “God & Country” produced by Rob Reiner aims to raise awareness among churchgoing American Christians about the threat of anti-democratic religious extremism in the United States. The film, which opens in theaters on February 16, is perhaps the first Hollywood-adjacent effort to popularize the term “Christian nationalism” and spur conversations among Christians about the merging of church and state.

Directed by Dan Partland and inspired by Katherine Stewart’s book “The Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism,” the documentary features prominent Christians who have expressed concerns about the growing influence of anti-pluralistic and anti-democratic strains of religion in America. The film highlights the symbiotic relationship between Christian nationalism and former President Donald Trump.

Religious figures interviewed in the film discuss the transformation of evangelicalism into a cultural and political movement that can be described as “Christian nationalism.” The documentary also exposes the well-funded efforts of advocacy groups to promote conservative Christianity in government and the techniques they employ to rally conservative Christians to vote. The filmmakers emphasize that Christian nationalism threatens not only American democracy but also the church itself.

The term “Christian nationalism” can be controversial and academic-sounding, but the filmmakers hope to educate viewers about the difference between this movement and the teachings of Jesus. Their aim is to spark conversations and create awareness among audiences, including conservative Christians who may identify with or empathize with the movement.

“God & Country” acknowledges the recent attack on the U.S. Capitol as a part of the broader threat posed by Christian nationalism. The documentary highlights the dangerous combination of political ideology and religious fervor that can lead to extreme actions. The filmmakers stress the importance of accurately portraying the dangers without fearmongering or perpetuating divisions.

As the influence of churchgoing Christians in America dwindles, some experts argue that they are seeking to reclaim political power through Christian nationalism. The film contends that preserving American democracy requires understanding and addressing this threat. The documentary warns that this movement has grown more dangerous and amplified under the influence of former President Trump.

In conclusion, “God & Country” presents a cautionary examination of Christian nationalism in the United States. By shedding light on the movement’s goals and tactics, the film encourages viewers to consider the implications of intertwining faith and politics in a diverse and democratic society.