Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Systematic Theology

First Advisor

Leopoldo A. Sánchez

Scripture References in this Resource

Romans 6:3-4; Galatians 4:4-6


Identity politics has become a frequently referenced and much maligned term used to describe a trend in political engagement in the early 21st century. Identity politics is employed across the political spectrum and has critics on both the left and right in the United States. Christian Identity Meets Identity Politics examines the contours of identity politics to understand and consider the concerns which lead neighbors to engage in identity politics, accounts for the needs of those neighbors who are denied God’s gift of justice through the state, considers criticisms leveled against identity politics within the greater view of Western liberalism, critically examines how various forms of Christian political engagement function in ways that are congruent with identity politics, and finally posits that proper Lutheran engagement is able to avoid the negative tendencies of identity politics while also affording the Lutheran the opportunity to account for the needs of neighbors highlighted by the turn to identity politics.

In order to accomplish this, Christian Identity Meets Identity Politics proposes a lens as a model for examining the relationship between core convictions, identity, relationship to neighbors, and goals for the state. Using this lens, four common Christian approaches to political engagement are explored, and their inability properly to account for the concerns of identity politics, either by themselves engaging in a form of identity politics, or by failing to account for the legitimate concerns of the neighbors in the state. Finally, Christian Identity Meets Identity Politics explores the work of contemporary Lutheran scholars to argue that a properly formed Lutheran identity accounts for the legitimate needs of the neighbors in the state and does so while avoiding the temptation to participate in an identity politics form of political engagement.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.