Earlier this month, World Magazine published a piece noting that “conservative Christian scholars” had begun to publicly question the veracity of David Barton’s work. That article and the questions it raised about Barton’s work was part of a chain of events that ultimately led Barton’s publisher to pull his book from circulation and cancel his contract.
Since then, more and more conservatives have been coming forward with their own questions about Barton’s pseudo-history while Barton has focused his response primarily on attacking his most prominent critic, Warren Throckmorton, as some sort of fake Christian who cannot be trusted because he doesn’t support the use of reparative therapy to “cure” gays.
But while Barton is intent on attacking Throckmorton’s conservative bona fides, conservative scholars continue to undermine Barton’s credibility, to which Barton has thus far been unable to respond.
In fact, a new piece published today on the World Magazine website quotes several more Glenn Beck-approved scholars agreeing that Barton’s book is misleading and that his claims are wrong:
The Jefferson Lies commends Daniel Dreisbach, an American University professor, calling him one of the few Jefferson scholars who employs a “sound historical approach,” so I asked Dreisbach whether he agreed with Barton. Dreisbach replied that he has a “very hard time” accepting the notion that Jefferson was ever an orthodox Christian, or that Jefferson ever embraced Christianity’s “transcendent claims.”
Louisiana State University professor James Stoner, one of Glenn Beck’s “Beck University” lecturers, says Throckmorton and Coulter’s book seems “entirely in line” with what he knows about Jefferson’s faith. Stoner describes Jefferson as a “rationalist skeptic.”
Professor Kevin Gutzman, who has appeared both on WallBuilders radio and the Glenn Beck program, argues that “Jefferson was not a Christian, if the word ‘Christian’ has any meaning,” because he rejected the Bible’s “supernatural content.” Gutzman thinks Jefferson’s skepticism certainly predated 1813.