Evangelicalism – should I care?

By definition I’m an Evangelical. But I don’t care about evangelicalism. I’m not concerned about its history or its future. I’m not interested in determining how I fit in, if I do or if I don’t.

Maybe it’s because it’s such a broad term that it’s rather meaningless. But there are blog posts (Internet Monk has many great ones if you are interested), articles (Goodbye, Evangelicalism at Christianity Today) and still books about it coming out by very important people. Should I care? Serious, not sarcastic inquiry.

Evangelicalism by D.A. Carson

Book HT: Baker Book House

4 Responses to “Evangelicalism – should I care?”

  1. 1 Nathan W. Bingham

    I can’t say I have a particular “care” for “evangelicalism” and consequentially don’t have any feelings about “saying goodbye” to it.  You’re right; the term used today is way too broad to have any significant meaning.
    That said, I think it is important (I’m not saying you deny this by your post) to have an understanding of the historic Christian faith and the development / progression of faith throughout the ages.  Sadly, many today have inherited a very “individualistic” mindset and taken this into their “Christianity.”  Sola Scriptura was not a cry for individualism where Christians could sit alone in their room, reading their Bible “alone” and ignoring the past 2000 years of God’s grace in His Body and rejecting the historic Confessions.
    If I had the time (maybe I should make time) I’d be reading Carson’s book and the links you posted.
    Thanks Jeff.

  2. 2 Scripture Zealot

    Might you be referring to something like Reader-Response Criticism?

    I can understand how important it is to study the history of Biblical interpretation throughout history. I’m familiar with Augustine and Pelagius, and Luther and the Catholic church etc. I’m also pretty familiar with the Reformed confessions linked here. I also like to use older commentaries from dead people.

    But I want to go back to Calvin and go forward from there to the Puritans and then the next generation to Edwards. And then go way back to the church fathers to learn how they saw things.

    So I guess I see the importance of the history of orthodox (if that’s the right term) Christianity but I’m just not so concerned with Evangelicalism. If it doesn’t go away I think it needs some sort of a reformation or revival.


  3. 3 Chuck

    Interesting question. I love the term “Evangelical”. It reminds me of my heritage from Luther and the classic Reformation Evangelicals.

    But today’s Evangelicals – who nurtured my faith years ago- leave me feeling alienated from them.

    I am grateful for the ethos of respect for scripture and their latest concerns for creationism and worldview. But by and large, I sense your ennui!

  4. 4 Scripture Zealot

    Thanks for your comment Chuck and for helping me expand my vocabulary.

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