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Christianizing the Old Testament and the Museum of the Bible: Guest Post by Jill Hicks-Keeton

Here now is a final guest post on the Museum of the Bible by Jill Hicks-Keeton, one of the two editors of the recent book that contains a number of evaluative essays by a range of scholars.  Her title asks the driving question of her post and her first word answers it!

Many thanks to Jill and her co-editor Cavan Concannon for providing these three posts.  If they have sparked your interest — check out the book!

Jill will be happy to respond to your comments and questions.



Can the Bible Organize History?

By Jill Hicks-Keeton

No—but the Museum of the Bible makes an intrepid, though misguided, effort. By its very name, the Museum of the Bible must privilege certain literature: texts that became biblical. The institution is structurally organized around the category “Bible.” Yet, as readers of this blog will already know, none of the biblical writers thought they were writing something called Bible, as moderns know it today.[1] In my work analyzing the exhibits at the Museum of the Bible (MOTB), I am interested in what we miss when the category “Bible” is used to shape history. Who is included? Who’s left out? What is lost?


Using today’s Bible as a lens through which to define the contours of history from antiquity to today leads to a Christian accounting of history at the expense of Judaism. This is because, through happenstance of language and other factors, Christians came to use the word “Bible” to refer to the New Testament, literature from the first and second centuries CE that Christians believe to be the continued revelation of the God of Israel. On the other hand, Talmudic literature produced by rabbis in the first few centuries CE, believed by Jews to be the continued revelation of the God of Israel, did not come to bear the moniker “Bible.” The MOTB has thus taken an anachronistic sorting criterion and used it to determine which literature—and therefore whose story—gets represented.


In my chapter for The Museum of the Bible: A Critical Introduction, I argue that the Museum prioritizes Christianity as the finisher of history, leaving Judaism in the dustbin. One of the principal exhibits I analyze occupies what is called the Stories of the Bible floor, where we can—according to the MOTB website—“walk through the stories of the Hebrew Bible, immerse [ourselves] in first-century Nazareth, and listen to the story of how the followers of Jesus grew into a thriving community.”[2] The first of these, which entails retractable walls and theatrical smoke, is intended to represent scriptures shared by Christians and Jews.


As we enter this Hebrew Bible exhibit, a narrator confidently announces: “Tanakh, Old Testament, Septuagint, Hebrew Bible. It has many names. It contains many books, but tells one story.” What we have here is an initial attempt to represent Jews (Tanakh), Christians (Old Testament), Catholic Christians (Septuagint), Protestant Christians along with biblical scholars (Hebrew Bible) followed by an immediate funneling of diverse bodies of literature with various interpretations into a single story with a univocal representation. As my collaborator Cavan and I have argued elsewhere,[3] the MOTB’s tour of the Hebrew Bible weaves a tale that sounds astoundingly similar to how the apostle Paul interpreted Israel’s scriptures in letters to the Galatians and Romans now memorialized in the New Testament. Abraham, Ruth, and Isaiah—among others—are recruited in this exhibit to highlight the opening up of God’s promises made originally to Israel to have universal application.


Once we leave the Hebrew Bible exhibit, we have two choices for where to go next on the Stories of the Bible floor: (1) The World of Jesus of Nazareth, or (2) The New Testament. Alarmingly, it’s possible for visitors to walk out of this exhibit floor without any notion that the literature belonging to the Jesus movement was but one strand of tradition that built on Israel’s scriptures. Rabbinic Judaism, which in many ways is analogous to Christianity but whose literature isn’t “Bible,” is wiped off the historical map. In this museum, Jews are seemingly left in antiquity, frozen in time, superseded by Christians.


While we find actors playing ancient Jewish characters in the Nazareth exhibit, up one floor in the History of the Bible exhibit is a modern Jewish sofer who copies text of the Hebrew Bible while guests are invited to observe. But there is history to be had before we make it to his artistry. This floor is organized around what the Museum calls “the path to universal access.” The MOTB introduces its fourth-floor History of the Bible exhibit with this placard:


“Long ago, before the Bible was gathered into one book, it began as a collection of oral traditions and writings accessible only to a few people. Embraced by many communities with different traditions, the Bible moved from handwritten scrolls to manuscript codices, to printed books to mobile devices. Today the Bible thrives worldwide. How did it grow and spread?”


Notice that before we begin in the beginning, we know where we’re going. This exhibit is going to explain how we got where we are today, and it ends with IllumiNations—a celebration of evangelical Christian translation and Bible distribution efforts. In other words, the MOTB has constructed and communicated a telos of the Bible’s formation; the end goal, as this exhibit frames it, is for the traditions of ancient Israel and Judah to overcome particularity and reach a global audience. In order for this to happen, the exhibit’s narrative arc implies, the Bible needed Christianity.


The Museum’s public relations team and other representatives have consistently refuted the notion that the MOTB prioritizes the Christian Bible. Yet, as the collected essays in our edited volume show, this institution is fundamentally evangelical, in ways consistent with the Green family’s religious expression. Now, of course there is nothing inherently wrong with Christians privately funding a museum that represents their particular perspective on the Bible. The problem arises for biblical scholars like me when Christian theology is represented as history. And the Bible should be, I think, an object of study rather than an organizer of history. There is too much to lose otherwise.


“Could it be different, though?,” you ask? Is there a solution to the problem of diversity at the MOTB? Yes. There are at least a couple of options. One alternative was imagined by some of my firecracker undergraduate students in an introductory biblical studies course. Last year in my “Biblical Literature” class at the University of Oklahoma (a class, incidentally, populated by some students who attend church with the Green family), I challenged my students to work in groups to assess a current MOTB exhibit, design a renovation to reflect what they had learned in class, and then pitch it to the rest of us, who were play-acting as MOTB board members. The group who tackled the “Hebrew Bible” exhibit came up with an exciting idea for an overhaul. They wrote and recorded three scripts for narration—one offering a Christian accounting of the Old Testament, one coming from a Jewish perspective talking about the Tanakh, and one representing scholarly analysis of these texts. Their idea was that visitors would go through the exhibit multiple times, with different headsets, and that the entire point would be to communicate the diversity of approaches.


It’s a creative attempt to solve the problem. Where it does not quite land, though, is that it yet remains difficult to capture the diversity not only between traditions but also within them. The brand of Christianity that dominates the MOTB, the available evidence suggests, is white evangelicalism. My own conclusion, then, is that the Museum of the Bible can’t be fixed. It can merely be saved. Call it the “Museum of the Evangelical Bible,” and let’s call it a day.






[1] See esp. Timothy K. Beal, The Rise and Fall of the Bible: the Unexpected History of an Accidental Book (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2011); Eva Mroczek, The Literary Imagination Jewish Antiquity (New York: Oxford University Press, 2016); Judith H. Newman, Before the Bible: The Liturgical Body and the Formation of Scriptures in Early Judaism (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018).

[2] https://www.museumofthebible.org/museum/explore.

[3] Jill Hicks-Keeton and Cavan Concannon, “‘Squint against the grandeur!’: Waiting for Jesus at the Museum of the Bible,” The Bible & Critical Theory 15:1 (2019): 114-29.

Evangelicals Who Make the World A Better Place. Guest Post by Robin Jones
Why Would An Atheist Teach the Bible? Readers’ Mailbag



  1. Avatar
    Nichrob  July 21, 2020

    Jill… I downloaded your book and I’m almost done reading it… Just wanted to say thank you for all your hard work. I wish your book could be turned into a TV documentary and aired on NPR… similar to the series “From Jesus to Christ”. Wish I could “make it so” for you…..

  2. Avatar
    Poohbear  July 22, 2020

    Quote “white evangelicalism”
    What about black Catholics and brown 1st Century Christian Fundamentalists?
    It’s amazing how QUICKLY people have bought into the New Racialism. No more red skin, but plenty of white skin. This underscores how much opinions are fashionable.
    From Abraham through Moses to the sealing of the bible after Ezra/Nehemiah, the main SYMBOL of blessing to Jews was land. There was the “Promised Land”, Zion and Jerusalem.
    But God’s creation was for all people (not even “whites” and Jews) – these were just symbols.
    NOTHING shows the rejection of Jews more than the destruction of the Temple and the loss of Israel for two millennium. Why? Because they did not know the time of their visitation, Luke 19:44.
    AS Jacob, Moses, Daniel etc said – Israel would end with the Messiah – and by extension, Judaism. The OT was condemning of the Jews – Jews do not own the Tanakh. As Zechariah put it, they still won’t understand this “new covenant” even when their kingly Messiah comes, and they see he’s the lowly man they had crucified.

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 22, 2020

      Other types of Christians are marginalized in this museum. What you call opinions being fashionable I call knowledge being be expanded and produced.

  3. Avatar
    mikezamjara  July 22, 2020

    Hi Dr Bart
    off topic

    I just want to share a funny feeling I have about the bible. Since I participated in the blog I understood how little did I know about it. First I wanted to learn about it to answer the attacks the Christians threw to me. But as I learned more and more, I understood that the interpretations we were giving to the text were absolutely wrong. I am interested now in understanding the people that wrote the books. When I try to abandon for a second the privilege of being born in the XXI century and tried to be empathic as possible to the feelings of the people that wrote those books I feel it as worth of admiration (as art, as culture), worth of respect (as a source for inspiration for many people), worth of critical study(needed to be understood in the light of evidence). I get angry to the lack of respect that many christians do to it when they misunderstand it for ignorance. I get angry when atheists mock of the bible because of that and respond to them both.
    I am now a nonbeliever defender of the bible. hahaha. Funny isn’t it?

  4. Avatar
    Matt2239  July 22, 2020

    Jesus she really hates evangelicals.

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 22, 2020

      Hi there. I’m here in the comments, since Dr. Ehrman asked me to respond. Was this comment for me?

  5. Avatar
    DoubtingTom  July 22, 2020

    Very insightful analysis, I especially liked the students idea.

    However, why pollute such great scholarly work at the end with the politically loaded term “white evangelical Christian”? Wasn’t evangelical Christian sufficient? Are there significant doctrinal differences based on race? Do you believe dialogue to solve today’s divisiveness starts with insults? Surely you are not claiming there are no black evangelical Christians?

    What’s especially sad is that your good work based on best evidence, may be summarily dismissed as the ranting of a leftist with an agenda.

    I’m no longer a Christian, but did try evangelical Christianity for a very short time after leaving Catholicism. I’m just tired of the constant insults lobbed from every faction in every setting.

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 22, 2020

      It is difficult for me to see how “white” is an insult. The premise of that claim is unsound. It is an accepted category of analysis in my field. Further, doctrine as an organizing metric without attention to race is now passé. It is beyond me why anyone would think I said there are no black evangelicals. I’m saying black evangelicalism is not represented in this museum.

      • Avatar
        DoubtingTom  July 23, 2020

        Based on the other comments to your article, white evangelistic Christian is obviously an insult. It’s a euphemism for racist Christian.

        Again how is their doctrine substantially different?

        Your good work is getting lost by unnecessary use of inflammatory terms. You didn’t need to resort to it to make your excellent points.

        • Avatar
          Jill_HicksKeeton  July 23, 2020

          I am not using “white” or “evangelicalism” or any combination of the two as insults or euphemisms. I am using “white” as an ethnic designation, as is the norm in the field. If such use of “white” inflames you I recommend that you interrogate why that is so.

          It is not only good but also necessary that I use “white” in this work because otherwise my argument would be imprecise (even incorrect). Again, I do not see doctrine alone as the way to define or study a religious group.

    • Avatar
      clerrance2005  July 26, 2020

      Doubting Tom,
      I think one only has to delve into Transatlantic Slave Trade in Africa (emphasis on the works of mercenaries and missionaries) and other geographic locations and may be the term ‘white evangelism’ will present one with another perspective. Its very subtle to the point that, the very afflicted have an incredibly hard time grappling with the extent of its post-effect. Indigenous culture and heritage have been severely relegated in some of these areas partly due to ‘White evangelism’.

      I agree with Jill’s statement “Further, doctrine as an organizing metric without attention to race is now passé”

      A difficult and unpleasant discussion, but one that needs to be had as we all put ‘the pursuit of truth’ and respect above all else.

  6. Avatar
    JeffreyFavot  July 22, 2020

    There you go again with bigoted remarks such as “White Evangelicalism”. News flash, orthodox Christian doctrine has been around 2,000 years and consistent everywhere on Earth. From Ethiopia to Alabama.
    Theology is a part of history. That’s your problem. Theology shaped history. How can you accurately represent an authors work without knowing what he believes. The moment to talk about anything in the Bible, you’re talking theology. Every writer was a theologian. The minute you say anything related to
    God, you’re speaking as a theologian. The MOTB is representing the Christian Bible, from an orthodox standpoint. Which it should. Do you think museums in Israel should represent an Black Hebrew Israelite viewpoint? Of course not. Does the Smithsonian represent the theist view of Creation? No. Secular Scholars should never be used to represent the Bible. They refuse to acknowledge the theology behind the intention of the authors. Why would you study the constitution without the intention and worldview behind the constitution? Makes no sense. You end up like all liberal scholars. Just a mish mash of crazy ideas about the original authors. Sells books, but doesn’t accurately represent the original authors. The Bible is for believing people, not unbelievers.

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 22, 2020

      Is this a question? If so, please feel free to reformulate it and I will be glad to address it. For the moment, though, I will note that “white” is an accepted category of analysis when it comes to the study of evangelicalism in our field.

      • Avatar
        JeffreyFavot  July 23, 2020

        Wrong. Your use of the phrase “White Evangelicalism”, is motived by your liberal deep seated hatred for the Christian Faith. You can try and disguise it as a field of study all you want. If you don’t think Christians see through your writing, you’re clueless. You should spend more time in churches, than in a classroom. The worship of Jesus Christ is multi-racial and churches are extremely diverse. There’s no such thing as White Evangelicalism. That’s liberal nonsense. Go full steam ahead and say what you really want to say. The “White Jesus”. Your rhetoric is written to cause division and hatred. You went to school all those years and your contribution to the planet was a book about a private Museum? Well done. After reading the comments, I am not the only one that sees it this way as well. Do something more useful with your life.

        • Avatar
          Jill_HicksKeeton  July 23, 2020

          Feel free to call my supervisor to complain.

    • Avatar
      tricksandthings  July 22, 2020

      Theology is the study of God. Theology can apply to a wide range of religious movements, and it does not bear any weight on “objective truth”. It is simply an assessment of the beliefs and religious roots of a particular faith. Culture and race are a part of the setting in which these religious faiths have been grounded and expanded from. When she uses the the term “White Evangelicalism” she is literally defining yet another example of how religious views are affected by culture and race. The MOTB is a portrayal of the scriptures and its history, viewed through a western, evangelical lens (Particularly white america). The main point of Jill’s piece is to depict how lopsided such a portrayal can be when the roots of the religious view of Judaism have been hi-jacked by the west, a culture that is far removed from the origins which the native texts truly stem from. The point is that by doing such a thing as calling it the “MOTB” you are not truthfully representing the roots of what it really was, and what the actual cultures and people behind it saw it as. Hence a better name “Museum of the Evangelical Bible”.

    • Avatar
      AstaKask  July 22, 2020

      Isn’t Ethiopia where they are miaphysites? IIRC, that’s why the Pope blessed Mussolini’s little venture there.

  7. Avatar
    Jill_HicksKeeton  July 22, 2020

    For those readers taking exception to my characterization of the Christianity in the museum as white evangelicalism, I offer another piece of my work that dives into race and the Museum of the Bible: https://therevealer.org/the-slave-bible-is-not-what-you-think/

    • Avatar
      Kirktrumb59  July 22, 2020

      Dr. H-K: Some of us, I’m confident, have understood you clearly. Keep up the good work.

  8. Avatar
    Stephen  July 22, 2020

    I wouldn’t really have a problem with the MOTB if it was located in Oklahoma City or Atlanta, but its location near the National Mall gives it an imprimatur that it otherwise wouldn’t have. It’s intended audience will assume it has some official national status that it purchased but did not earn. I expected it to be called the National Museum of the Bible. Was there any thought given you’re aware of to try to do that?

    Thanks for the posts! I read Prof Moss’s book and I look forward to reading yours.

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 22, 2020

      I agree that the location is relevant to understanding what’s happening with this museum. I don’t know whether there were other names considered. But some of their fundraising emails solicit donations in part by noting that unlike other museums they do not receive federal funding. In her contribution to our book, Margaret M. Mitchell suggests that one could read this as “we should be receiving federal funding but we’re not.”

      Thanks for reading!

  9. epicurus
    epicurus  July 22, 2020

    Great post – I will definitely have to check out the book.

  10. Avatar
    dankoh  July 22, 2020

    What you’re describing here is classic supersessionism. Nicely described, too.

    I have to quibble on one point, though: Jews don’t consider the Talmud to be a continuing revelation from God. Even the most Orthodox would only go so far as to say that the Mishneh (the Oral Torah) was revealed by God to Moses at Sinai along with the written Torah (the Pentateuch). It isn’t, of course; it’s the redaction of rabbinical discussions between c. 200 BCE and 200 BCE. But I’ve never heard it described as a continuing revelation.

    Or is that what you meant by “continued”?

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 23, 2020

      Good point! Yes, I’m speaking from a historical perspective and that formulation could be productively refined to represent better how the Talmudic writers represented their own work

  11. Avatar
    RonaldTaska  July 22, 2020

    Good conclusion. Thanks

  12. Avatar
    PBS  July 23, 2020

    While I think even most Evangelicals & folks at the MOTB would agree, as you say, that “none of the biblical writers thought they were writing something called Bible” (in the writer’s own time), a chief reason for arguing for at macro-theme throughout the books of the Bible goes like this: If Jesus is the Second Person of the Trinity (who therefore authoritatively spoke truth) and, texts like Luke 24:27 actually record His words (“Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the [Hebrew] Scriptures”), then is not the case for linking the OT with the NT into a macro-theme a legitimate one?

    Thanks for your participation in the blog!

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 23, 2020

      If I understand you correctly, here’s what I would say: Our book does not argue that such a link is illegitimate. We argue that it’s out of step with the self-publicized goals of the museum and in step with the evangelicalism of the Green family.

  13. Avatar
    jjtechno2  July 23, 2020

    Thank you for the insight. If travel ever becomes possible again, I will visit MOTWEB.

  14. Avatar
    GeoffClifton  July 23, 2020

    Thanks Jill and Cavan too. Great posts. Jill, you really gave me a light bulb moment when you referred to Christian literature needing to be considered alongside contemporaneous (or near contemporaneous) Talmudic writings and vice versa. I know I should have thought about this before but hadn’t because, like many ‘cultural Christians’, I probably have the MOTB mindset. And Cavan, I liked your comment about Adolf Deissman. Thanks to you both.

  15. Avatar
    Eric  July 24, 2020

    Does the theological interpretation of the Old Testament among evangelicals differ greatly between predominately white and predominantly black congregations/denominations/seminaries?

    I have never attended either sort of seminary, but I have heard preaching from the graduates of both…in my limited experience, they both treat the Old Testament as a “telos” as you call it pointing at fulfillment in the New Testament.

    I do not at all disagree with your evaluation of the MotB [and I am not an evangelical], but it seems Ms. Hicks-Keeton, that you couldn’t help but take a shot where none was called for (or at least, for which there was no present context), that is to say a racial subcategory of evangelicals. You might as well have added “heteronormative,” which I imagine is also a predominant underpinning of the Museum’s mission.

    It seems to me there is enough racial division in society at the moment, we would do well not to inflame it further when it is not in evidence.

    Again, agree with your central editorial opinion, though. Thank you for writing it.

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 24, 2020

      Thanks for reading. I believe I have responded to your critique in answers to other comments. (If you choose to address me by title + last name, please use Dr. Hicks-Keeton.)

  16. Avatar
    Cavanconcannon  July 24, 2020

    For all of you (and you know who you are) who seem vexed by Dr. Hicks-Keeton’s use of the phrase “white evangelicals,” two things: 1) white evangelicalism is a recognizable sect within the broader evangelical movement. It is not a pejorative term but one that describes a subset of evangelicalism (which has many different forms) that is primarily white demographically and connected to a similar set of institutions, churches, and schools. It is used regularly by sociologists and historians. 2) if you assume that calling a group of people “white” is somehow an attack or “a shot” or somehow an implication of racist, then you should probably check your own assumptions, anxieties, and prejudices around the term. It would be worth asking “why am I triggered by this term?”, “why does it make me uncomfortable?”, “what does that say about my own anxieties about myself or about people who are of a different ethnicity from me?” Dr. Hicks-Keeton has done a great deal of work on the museum and issues of race, all of it done through careful research. It would be worth pausing to think before you decide to post your critical opinion and, perhaps, ask, “Have I thought this through? Do I have evidence to present that the professional scholar I am about to critique has missed?”

  17. Robert
    Robert  July 24, 2020

    As far as I can see the very valid criticisms of the detestable evangelical, supersessionist perspective on display at the MOTB need not be focused especially on white evangelicals. I certainly do believe there are indeed aspects of white evangelicalism that do deserve to be condemned specifically as such, but the case has not yet been made here that the MOTB is deserving of such specific criticism. Until this case is made explicitly, I understand why some may consider this to be a cheap shot, implying racial subtones that are not yet apparent. On the other hand, the facile implied defense of the supposedly anti-slavery Bible against its abuse by the so-called slaves bible does indeed serve to justify this critique of the white evangelical MOTB, but it was only referenced here in passing in the comments. Are there other aspects of the MOTB that also justify criticism of its white evangelical perspective?

    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 25, 2020

      These posts are informed by the research contained in our edited volume. There is one essay explicitly on the museum’s failure to include Black Christianity. I did not write that essay but my work is, rightly, informed by it. I use the word “white” because to do otherwise would be imprecise.

  18. Avatar
    JonA  July 25, 2020

    Through this blog site I have become aware of a building in Washington, D.C. called the Museum of the Bible. Evidently this museum was built and is supported by a group of people who believe that a book, which they refer to as the “Bible” is an ancient record of revealed truth set down by an entity that they call “God”. Evidently these people also believe that they are charged by this god to interpret what this book says and means, and that the precepts contained therein are binding on all of humanity for all time. I think to myself, “What a curious, if not really original notion.” These people are extremely fortunate to live in a country where all are free to think and believe as they like.

  19. sschullery
    sschullery  July 25, 2020


    Like most of Bart’s readers, apparently, I had no idea that there were different categories of evangelicalism by race. I wonder if it’s limited to white and black, or if there’s Korean, etc., and if the label “black” really does the job (are Nigerian and American black evangelicals really of a kind?). I have often been struck by how “unevangelical” the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (surely, white!) is.

    Also, I guess I am surprised, given how problematic the whole notion of race is, that scholars would dare to use it to define categories of anything.

    I would appreciate being educated further on the topic of kinds of evangelicalism. Perhaps worthy of a new thread(?). Perhaps Bart would give you permission to mererly copy/paste something you’ve previously written on the subject, like he frequently does,


    • Avatar
      Jill_HicksKeeton  July 25, 2020

      Thanks for your curiosity! This podcast episode is an excellent introduction to what scholars mean when we use the designation “white” – and also why it’s a necessary category to use in order to be precise: https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/straightwhiteamericanjesus/episodes/2018-11-29T22_10_19-08_00

      • sschullery
        sschullery  July 27, 2020

        So, do I infer correctly that there are “white” and “other” as far as academic categories of evangelicalism go?

        I remember from my catechatical class (in the uber-white ULCA, now the ELCA) that evangelical meant something like “true to the bible”. The point was to distinguish us from the Catholics, whose faith might derive also from Papal Bulls, church fathers’ writings, and other merely human, non-scriptural traditions. It had nothing to do with fundamentalist interpretations of the Bible. Has the word been usurped as an academic term of art such that the meaning I learned is archaic, at least in the context of “white evangelicalism”? (What a wonderful turn-about to have my shameful ancestors now be excluded from a category of whiteness!)

        • Avatar
          Cavanconcannon  July 27, 2020

          Evangelicalism has a long and complicated history and there are a lot of different ways in which scholars have parsed the diversity among groups who either claim the term or resemble those that do. You can find interesting and helpful attempts at definition and classification in Mark Noll’s various books on evangelical history, Matthew Sutton’s American Apocalypse, Melani McAlister’s The Kingdom of God Has No Borders, Douglas Sweeney’s The American Evangelical Story, and (though problematic in many respects) Thomas Kidd’s Who is an Evangelical?. Many definitions of evangelicalism build on or push back against that offered by David Bebbington in his Evangelicalism in Modern Britain.

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