The Battles Over the Label "Evangelical"

Thursday, 01 Mar 2001

If we were willing to distinguish between Evangelicalism as a socio-historical phenomenon (what it has been), and Evangelicalism as a theologically-defined body of conviction (what it should be), we might be able to make some headway. We could admit that where we think the movement should go is not necessarily the exact place it came from.
Who owns this thing called "Evangelicalism"? On one hand, we speak as if we all know what we are talking about when we use the term. This is especially true for those of us who were raised in the subculture. On other occasions, we speak as if there is no coherent conception of what it means to be an evangelical and that there doesn't appear to be a theological consensus. This discrepancy has contributed to the confusion over what should be done in the face of increasing diversity. Should we view the movement of some evangelicals ...

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