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The Church Of England And The British Imperial State: Anglican Metropolitan Sermons Of The 1850s

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Chapter Summary

From earliest settlement, church–state relations in the New World of British North America assumed a different character from those in the Old World. This chapter evaluates the religious right's historical claims by examining the question of church–state relations within the context of the founding era. It was a time when Virginians took the lead in debating many of the same questions raised by today's religious right. First, Robertson's evangelical forebears confronted the question of whether the new republic was a Christian nation and, more particularly, the question of who decides how to define Christian. Second, from 1776 until 1785,Virginians took up the question of the separation of church and state, first in the formation of the state constitution and then in the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom.

Keywords:Christian nation; church–state relations; North America; Virginia



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