Modern Christianity undoubtedly has a positive role in today's world and in American culture. It upsets me when I see Christianity mocked and demonized by people who would rather exempt themselves from Christian values. IMHO, Christian values are universal spiritual principles. IMHO, Christian values were indispensable in the formation of the US which led us to become the freest, wealthiest, most benevolently powerful nation that this world has ever seen. IMHO, our nation is in decline because we are straying from the Christian values that this nation was founded upon.
I believe that societal progress is not evolutionary, it is cyclical and repetitive. We (the human race) can never improve our humanity as a whole over time, in the long run here on Earth. The human race is NOT perfectible. We (as a people)never learn. God made us flawed. God gave us free will. We all struggle with the good and evil inclinations within each of us. This is just the way it is. History repeats itself.
We may have more stuff and more liberties now, but times of plenty and times of famine have always been a cyclical part of human history. Scarcity and oppression will surely follow. Individuals have the same strengths and weaknesses as we did during biblical times. History repeats itself. The human soul faces the same challenges today as it always has. The human condition has been a constant since biblical times.
However, I believe that each one of us has constant and ongoing internal struggles with good versus evil. This is permanent part of human nature. Successive generations will never improve human nature. History proves this to be true.
Never-the-less, I believe that we can advance our eternal soul if we make the right choices when we are challenged. Human existence constantly tests and challenges us all. Rich and poor, healthy and sickly, privileged and oppressed are all challenged spiritually. We all have free will. Even a slave has free will. Our choices in this lifetime will determine how our soul progresses spiritually in the next existence.
Perhaps those that have the least advantage in this life, find it easier to make righteous decisions. Perhaps they are positioned to have less difficulty making the right choices in this life, which will progress their soul in the next. This is why we should never pity those who appear less fortunate than us or be envious of those who appear more fortunate. We all have different challenges. Perhaps, in the long run, those who have it hardest on Earth are better off than those who are more comfortable, happy and privileged.
Spiritual progress in my personal yardstick for success in this lifetime. For some people, perhaps myself, not being evil is the best we can do much of the time.
These are my personal beliefs.