Yes. “just me and Jesus”. That actually started from the hippy christians in the 1960s as they did big jesus rock concerts and little guitar singing things.
But it grew popular among evangelicals too as lots of people like big rock concerts and the “me and Jesus” philosophy fits well with the “rugged individualism” ideal of Americans.
So now you’ll find that me and Jesus in Christian groups right and left.
I grew up believing that it was my relationship with God that mattered more than any church or hierarchy. It’s a common idea in liberal protestant churches.
But there’s a difference in how evangelicals do it:
They believe the Bible is the infallible word of God. This gives their interpretation of the Bible absolute authority in their minds.
The “my personal Savior” thing though, is a nuance I never understand.
But, this thing I found ties it to capitalism which makes sense: I bought Jesus so Jesus is mine.
that American conservatives are all about hierarchy — refers to standard American conservative family structures.
It’s likely any young people you met online or in person were too young or gamers or disassociated (loners) not in any kind of relationship leading to marriage nor in a conservative family structure.
So while they hold the “ghost” of conservative ideals, they lack the formal structure of conservative ideals.
They yearn for hierarchy but what they see they don’t like.
They want to be in control but nobody wants them in control of them.
So, they control what they think are correct opinions about the world. “what’s wrong with the world today” and usually have very simple answers to fix all the world’s problems, usually getting rid of some group or another until only people that resemble themselves are left.
Would you accept being put within an existing hierarchy?
Or does no hierarchy on earth exist that is satisfactory?
Which hierarchies exist that you currently accept being within?
Is there any hierarchy within which you are subordinate where there is an authority to which you take direct orders and must comply?
Ok. So, which hierarchies on earth exist that are clear and honest with responsible leadership?
Good. So you want to see leaders that led more like you did.
Have you ever been a subordinate in a hierarchy that behaved in a fashion like yours did under you?