[Image of Jonathan Edwards, preacher of the Great Awakening, and of sermon called "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. From findagrave.com]
We've had several "Great Awakenings" in this country since its inception - revivals in which thousands of people "came to Christ." There was no long-lasting damage, though, and soon things were back to normal.
Fundamentalist christianists are all excited these days because, according to the Religion News Blog, "Large evangelical churches across the United States have ... experienced a burst in attendance since September."
Holy Crap! This could mean another Great Awakening is in the offing because evangelicals believe that previous "Great Awakening" revivals were "touched off by economic turmoil."
Here's their rationale: money's tight, people can't buy what they want anymore, and this deficit of material things, say the evangelicals, will cause people to realize they have a "void in life that only God can fulfill," so they'll return in big bunches to the churches; they'll come back to Jesus; and there will be a "widespread spiritual awakening."
Unfortunately, when the economy turns around again, and people once more have cash to spend, the "God void" will be filled with material stuff and the churches will empty out.
Maybe not such a "great" awakening, after all?