Monday, May 18, 2009

Evangelicalism the New Mainline?

This editorial from Christianity Today suggests that evangelicals are becoming a sort of new mainline in Protestantism. Studies show that some people who once nominally identified with Christianity are beginning to reject that label. In addition, evangelicalism is showing larger influence in traditional mainline denominations. I appreciated the closing words of the editorial:

Spreading the gospel, not seeking social or political relevance, is the heartbeat of evangelicalism. More often than not, cozying up to the culture has been a ticket to later embarrassment. To be sure, we also must remain engaged in the larger culture. We cannot afford to become consumed by our own theological distinctives and subculture. That too would be a compromise.

We are not called to identify with any culture or subculture, whether that be America or evangelicalism. Our future as a movement depends on that which is in our name, the evangel, the good news of Jesus Christ. If we keep that focus, we never have to worry about becoming the new sideline.

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