I’m about half way through so far. Mohler uses the first few chapters to paint a picture for Christian engagement in the public square, unpacking myths such as the notion that no religious motivation should ever be allowed to influence policy determination. Mohler sums up the argument:
“Not only must a person advocating a public-policy position have a purely secular rationale, but his advocacy must be secularly motivated as well. It is not enough to offer secular arguments for a position if one’s real reason for holding it is a belief in God.”
In chapter four, Mohler responds:
1. A liberal democracy must allow all participants in the debate to speak and argue from whatever worldviews or convictions they possess.
2. Citizens participating in public debate over law and public policy should declare the convictional basis for their arguments.
3. A liberal democracy must accept limits on secular discourse even as it recognizes limits on religious discourse.
4. A liberal democracy must acknowledge the commingling of religious and secular arguments, religious and secular motivations, and religious and secular outcomes.
5. A liberal democracy must acknowledge and respect the rights of all citizens, including its self-consciously religious citizens.
The book is a great read so far. I was particularly impressed with a chapter entitled “Torture and the War on Terror: On Adding Dirty Rules to Dirty Hands.” The chapter was originally written in response to Charles Krauthammer’s December 2005 Weekly Standard article The Truth About Torture. Mohler defends a modified form of John McCain’s view, contra Krauthammer.