Religious liberty was secured by persecuted minorities in America.

Historian Brandon O'Brien unveils the untold story of how religious liberty came to be. Between the Scylla and Charybdis of theocracy and secularism, Baptist pastor Isaac Backus contended for a third way. He worked to secure religious liberty and freedom of conscience for all Americans, not just for one particular denomination or religious tradition. Backus's theological ideas had social consequences, giving us insights into how people of faith navigate political debates and work for the common good. Backus lived in an age of both religious revival and growing secularism, competing forces much like those at work today. Then and now, people fiercely argue about the role of government and the limits of liberty. The past speaks into the present as we continue to demand liberty and justice for all.


Those interested in the origins of America’s policy on religious regulations will enjoy this assured history of the battles Backus fought when freedom of belief was no foregone conclusion.
— Publishers Weekly