Religion: Words & Works

¶ "In America, Christianity faces the danger of becoming a utilitarian faith, a faith that is practiced for the sake of getting something here and now," said Yale University's H. Richard Niebuhr, professor of theology, in a lecture at the University of Michigan. A utilitarian faith, declared Theologian Niebuhr (brother of Theologian Reinhold Niebuhr), is "the kind that says it is a good thing to believe in God because it will make you prosperous. A utilitarian faith takes the form of mental health. It allays anxiety. It makes you feel as you feel when you've had a good hot bath. This...

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