Critical Essay 8 - Danielle Britt Critical Essay 8 How did...

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Danielle Britt- Critical Essay 8 How did Rauschenbusch and Conwell use Christian theology to inform their beliefs on the issue of equal opportunity in America? According to Walter Rauschenbusch, “Christ revealed the divine worth of life… and [his] salvation seeks to the restoration and fulfillment of even the least.” i Rauschenbusch believed every person in the Kingdom of God should be equal. Russell Herman Conwell echoed the principle of equality when he claimed “the opportunity to get rich [is]… within the reach of almost every man and woman” as he believed God gives each person an equal opportunity to get rich. While both preachers believed God willed all of his people democratic equality, each differed on what they thought the definition of equal opportunity should be. Conwell believed equal opportunity for God’s people could be obtained through the system of capitalism; each person could acquire wealth if he or she chose to do so. However, Rauschenbusch differed for he believed equal opportunity could not be found in a capitalistic society and could only be achieved in a socialist society where every person has the same situation. While both preachers based their opinions on the basis of democratic Christianity, each came to different conclusions concerning how equal opportunity could be achieved in America. Both Walter Rauschenbusch and Russell Herman Conwell believed Christianity worked in the secular realm of industry and society. Rauschenbusch claimed by “laboring for [the Kingdom of God one] enter[s] into the joy and peace of the Kingdom as our divine fatherland and habitation.” ii One can labor for the kingdom of God by living life according to Christian principles, and one should labor on this Earth using Christ as an example.
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