There is a great post over at iMonk right now about the Church singing patriotic songs and what not. I think he gives a balanced view, but I’ll copy the best paragraph here and encourage you to head over and read the entire thing.
Perhaps the reason a song like “America the Beautiful” persists in worship among evangelicals is a simple, but deeply rooted problem: We- the church- don’t know who we are. We have lost our identity, and in the world in which we live, it is always easier to take hold of national identity than to live out the identity of God’s people.
Mandy and I just had a brief conversation related to this. She pointed out something truly amazing to me, and indicative of a problem in the American church – yesterday was Pentecost. How many of your churches celebrated Pentecost? I know too many churches that sung patriotic songs and preached about our countries fallen heroes (note: I have no problem with honoring those who died defending our freedoms, but there is probably a better place than a worship service).