The Sword of the Lord: The Roots of Fundamentalism in an American Family

The Scots-Irish who settled the South inherited both an evangelical legacy of abolitionism and social reform on the one hand, and responsibility for the destructive consequences of slavery on the other. Himes’ granddad was John R. Rice, the dean of American fundamentalists until his death in 1980. This book is about the history of fundamentalism and how we can move beyond it. More

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About Andrew Himes

Andrew Himes, author of The Sword of the Lord: The Roots of Fundamentalism in an American Family (, is the grandson of John R. Rice, the dean of American fundamentalists for decades until his death in 1980. Rice mentored many younger Baptist preachers including Billy Graham and Jerry Falwell, and founded and edited The Sword of the Lord newspaper. In addition to his granddad, Himes comes from a long line of fundamentalist preachers, including his dad, brother, uncles and great uncles, various cousins, and great-granddad Will Rice, who was both a Baptist preacher and a leader in Texas of the Ku Klux Klan. Himes was a youthful rebel and activist in the civil rights and peace movements of the 1960s, and only later in life began a spiritual journey to reconnect with and redefine his family's spiritual heritage. In other roles, Himes was founding director of Charter for Compassion International. Himes produced the 2005 film Voices in Wartime, a documentary that used poetry to explore the trauma of war ( He founded the Voices Education Project ( He was co-editor of the Voices in Wartime Anthology and director of the short film on PTSD, Beyond Wartime. He was co-founder of the international movement "Poets Against the War" in 2003. In the early 90s he was founding editor of the Microsoft Developer Network, and he helped pioneer Microsoft's embrace of the Internet by managing the team that built the company's first web site. In the 1980s he was founding editor of MacTech, the journal of Apple Computer technology (


A Black Man Walked into a Church
From "The Sword of the Lord: The Roots of Fundamentalism in an American Family: "In 1963 when I was 13, my dad was pastor of the Southside Baptist Church in Millington, Tennessee. Many in our congregation were employed at or lived on the nearby Memphis Naval Air Station. Our little church was a plain brick building with white trim set amid acres of soybeans, cotton and Johnson grass 10 miles east

How the Scots-Irish Invented Fundamentalism
The Scots-Irish migration to America in the 1700s helped prepare the way for the explosive growth of evangelicalism in the 1800s and the birth of modern fundamentalism in the early 1900s.The character of fundamentalism was shaped by the experience of the Scots-Irish over centuries of conflict and deprivation, and it included a profound love of democracy, a passion for individual rights, and...

Billy Graham and the Soda Fountain
Andrew Himes' story of how Billy Graham moved from being a fundamentalist to considering himself an evangelical (in the modern sense) and how Graham and John R. Rice broke off their partnership. Also, the story of the ice cream fountain of which Himes as a child was jealous.


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