Apologetics Index

Christian Exodus

Christian Exodus is a movement that encourages conservative Christians to move to South Carolina, and then to excert influence in local elections in conformity to the movement’s interpretation of Christian principles.

The movement was founded and is led by Cory Burnell.

A position statement on the group’s website says:

Our Intention:

ChristianExodus.org is an association of Christians who no longer wish to live under the unjust usurpation of powers by the federal government, and therefore resolves to formally disassociate itself from this tyrannical authority, and return to the model of governance of a constitutional republic. We seek a republican government constrained by constitutionally delegated powers. If this cannot be achieved within the United States, then we believe a peaceful withdrawal from the union to be the last available remedy.

Constitutional reforms:

ChristianExodus.org seeks to include many of our positions in a new constitution in South Carolina. For example, some constitutional guarantees ought to include the protection of human life at conception, the Ten Commandments as the foundation of law, the prohibition of any redefinition of marriage, and a strong reserve clause (reservation of undelegated powers to local government). […]
– Source: Position Statement, Christian Exodus. Last accessed: Feb. 22, 2006

From his rural home near Lodi, Calif., Cory Burnell keeps close watch over the news from South Carolina, and he likes what he sees.

Turning the state into a promised land for conservative Christians will be easier than he had thought, he says.

Burnell, a 30-year-old financial adviser and founder of Christian Exodus, believes thousands of religious conservatives across the USA agree with him when he says their influence on government is diluted by liberals and Republicans who have failed to do what mainstream Americans elected them to do.

The answer he came up with in late 2003: Move like-minded Christians to one state: South Carolina.

The state was a logical choice. It already is conservative, having played a major role in the rise of the Republican Party since Ronald Reagan. And it’s home to 750,000 Southern Baptists and Bob Jones University, a fundamentalist Christian institution.

Burnell’s plan is to recruit conservative Christians to move here and tip the scales further right.

Burnell is yet to move to South Carolina himself, he says, because he is busy recruiting. But he says he is working out the logistics for his family to relocate.

With a decisive majority, Burnell says, his group would be able to pass laws that line up with their biblical principles and their interpretation of the U.S. Constitution — laws that include outlawing abortion and homosexual relations, allowing governmental displays of Christian symbols and ending state-funded education.

Considering the size of the exodus so far — only about 20 people have moved to the Palmetto State, most of them in the past year — Burnell’s optimism might seem quixotic.

Still, he believes the movement will succeed because of the support his small band of emigrants already is finding in South Carolina. Plus, he said he expects more families to move this year. […more…]
– Source: Christian movement moving into South Carolina, USA TODAY, USA, Feb. 21, 2006

In our opinion Cory Burnell’s attempts to create what essentially would turn out to be a theonomy – generally considered an expansive version of theocracy – are unbiblical. Christians are not called or encouraged to set up separate states and/or countries. According to the Bible, their citizenship is in heaven. Until then, Christians are to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Separating themselves into an artificial religious community is a utopian fantasy.

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First published (or major update) on Wednesday, February 22, 2006.
Last updated on February 22, 2006.

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