Wednesday, 7 May 2008

An evangelical manifesto

Michael points us to a fascinating new document, The Evangelical Manifesto. I’ve only read the summary, but it looks as though the manifesto is specifically trying to rescue evangelicalism from the politics of the Religious Right. Signatories include Miroslav Volf, Kevin Vanhoozer, Darrell Bock, Justo Gonzalez, Mark Noll, Alvin Plantinga and Amos Yong.


Lumière et Possibilité said...

what was delightfully funny was the hubbub that certain 'right-wingers' made about it really being a product of the 'liberal media' to bring down conservative, right wing christianity.

Anonymous said...

I thought this bit was of interest:

"Too many of the problems we face as Evangelicals in the United States are those of our own making."

I guess they want more. ;)


Anonymous said...

Which door are they going to nail this whole thing to?

I was left somewhat dumbfounded after reading it. I suppose I was most suprised at the miracle that they kept it to 20 pages. ;)

But, somehow I think the "Evangelical Manifesto Press" isn't far behind.

Theologians, get your ink and quills ready. :D

Anonymous said...

It's interesting that the document defines "Evangelicalism" over against "fundamentalism", yet several of the signatories are undeniably fundamentalists. I wonder if some see this document as an opportunity to say to the world, "See, I'm not a fundamentalist (even though I look like one, think like one, talk like one . . .)."

Guy Davies said...

I welcome the Manifesto as an attempt to define the evangelical movement against the biblical evangel. Also, good to see gospel values being brought to bear upon public life, while avoiding identifying evangelicalism with party politics. As a UK observer I have never really understood American evangelicalism's attachment to neoconservatism.

spud tooley said...

i confess that i had some hesitations and misgivings before reading the document, but was actually quite impressed and invigorated after taking in the whole of what it addressed.

i am glad they chose not to say that creationism and inerrancy were non-negotiables. for the first, there's very little biblical justification anymore behind whatever the latest flavor of anti-natural-selection dessert is being served up; for the latter, somehow we can admit that we can't prove the existence of God, but goshdarnit we have a golden egg this unprovable God laid right here. kind of stupid when you think about it ... not that thinking is a pre-requisite of course in any of these endeavors.

more than anything, i was motivated and energized by the very positive nature of the piece - that it wasn't yet another "here's everything we're against" rant but an effort to make the gospel again a message of good news. imagine that - the gospel being good news. American Christianity has lost this defining characteristic ever since it embraced the neo-con's Jesus bobble-head doll.

perhaps one unintended benefit of the proposal is a clear opportunity to take this EM (Evangelical Manifesto) and align it with the other EM (Emergent Manifesto) and finally have all our EM & EMs in a row without demonizing the other side.

one can only hope...

mike rucker
fairburn, georgia, usa

Anonymous said...

What door are they going to nail this on? I don't know now. Apparently Erwin Lutzer is a signer, so where I'd suggest "apparently" wouldn't work. *zing*

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone,

worth checking out Jamie Smith's insightful comments about this at
thinktank/2008/05/an-evangelical.html, especially point 3 about the Manifesto's simplistic hermeneutic.


Anonymous said...

Exiled Preacher: As a UK observer I have never really understood American evangelicalism's attachment to neoconservatism.

It has to do with the lack of obvious miracles in the world except one, the rise of the secular State of Israel, which they identify with the religious Kingdom of Israel prophesied to have a rebirth under the Messiah. The problem with that, of course, is that the verses predicting the return of Israel also predict the return of animal sacrifices in the temple, which would undermine the finished work of the cross and the doctrine that believers are now the temple of the Spirit of God.

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