231 years later…

… has the American Experiment worked?

It might be distilled as such: “To create a democratic society grounded in principles of liberty, justice, and opportunity for all.”

Have we succeeded? Failed? Why or why not?

(oh, and if you would like to take issue with my synopsis of the American Experiment, please do … admittedly, I’m just an armchair historian)


6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Connor on July 2, 2007 at 1:41 pm

    As with most laboratory experiments, the experiment has succeeded in some respects but has uncovered new problems. Time to rethink, revise and move on with the next experiment.


  2. well, there haven’t (i assume) been any guys in suits and dark shades knocking on your door lately…

    we live in a place where you can still ask questions and give opinions freely and without fear.

    and we can still worship whomever we wish in pretty much any way we wish…

    of course this is all subject to revision.

    we’ll see…



  3. I could go on a major rant with this question – and I actually did, but decided to delete. It never helps to point out all the flaws of our government and society by typing them in a response to a blog post. I am finding that is better left to my everyday living.

    I will say I have serious doubt our experiment has worked “To create a democratic society grounded in principles of liberty, justice, and opportunity for all.”

    If I could add one thing to the end of that phrase I think we (America) would be a success – “if it suits our best interests.”

    And that makes all the difference in the world if you are seeking and living in the Kingdom of God.


  4. It’s far from perfect, but this democracy thing seems like a better option that most of the “large nation” options that have come before. But it doesn’t even begin to compare to the perfection that we long for on the New Earth and in the New Jerusalem.

    A quote for you from Dallas Willard (the best part of the quote is over at my blog):

    [On the new earth and] in this new city–“Jerusalem,” or “the peace of God,” is its name–“all cultures and languages will come together to see God in his glory (Isa. 66:18). They will transmit that vision of God throughout all of the earth, and all humanity will come regularly to the center of divine presence on earth, to delight in God and worship him (vv. 19-23).
    The power of God’s personal presence will, directly and indirectly, accomplish the public order in and among nations that human government has never been able to bring about. Truth and mercy will have met and kissed each other at last, like long-lost friends (Ps. 85:10). Grace and truth are reconciled in the person of the Son of man (John 1:17).

    The greatest temptation to evil that humanity ever suffers is the temptation to make a “Jerusalem” happen by human means. Human means are absolutely indispensable in the world as it is. that is God’s intention. We are supposed to act, and our actions are to count. But there is a limit on what human arrangements can accomplish. The alone cannot change the heart and spirit of the human being.

    Because of this, the instrumentalities invoked to make “Jerusalem” happen always wind up eliminating truth, or mercy, or both. World history as well as small-scale decision making demonstrates this. It is seen in the ravages of dictatorial power, on the one hand, and, on the other, in the death by minutiae that a bureaucracy tends to impose. It is well known how hard it is to provide a benign order within human means. For the problem, once again, is in the human heart. Until it fully engages with the rule of God, the good that we feel must be cannot come. It will at a certain point be defeated by the very means implemented to produce it.


  5. Quote is from The Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard, pp. 380f.


  6. Posted by Steve on July 24, 2007 at 7:56 am

    Wow, Taylor — amazing quote. I love Willard for quotes like that. So do many Christians in this country.

    And yet, many of them still attempt to achieve Jerusalem on their own power…


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