What’s the Future of the Evangelical Past?

Are we at the end of one era in the history of evangelicalism and the beginning of another? Where is the field headed? [Read more…]

The End of American Evangelicalism

Amid the semester’s end, the following is adapted and slightly updated from the Anxious Bench archives… One of the big surprises of 2017 was the extent of evangelical support for Donald Trump. During the Republican primaries, evangelicals might well have divided their support among a number of candidates who spoke persuasively about their Christian faith, including Ted [Read More…]

Billy Sunday vs. Kaiser Wilhelm the Mephistopheles

As the U.S. enters the centenary of its entry into World War I, a look back at war’s staunchest advocate among Christian fundamentalists: baseball player-turned-evangelist Billy Sunday. [Read more…]

Is Complementarian Theology Abusive to Women?

  As you may have heard, Princeton Seminary decided to award Tim Keller the prestigious Kuyper Prize for Excellence in Reformed Theology and Public Witness. But then it revoked that honor after an outcry from faculty, students, and alumni who objected to Keller’s defense of complementarian theology and to his opposition to the ordination of [Read More…]

Defining Evangelicalism: Part 1,242…

Douglas Winiarski’s Darkness Falls on the Land of Light begins with the story of two couples in Sturbridge, Massachusetts. In the winter of 1748-1749, Hannah and John Corey withdrew from Sturbridge’s Congregational church, were baptized, and united themselves to a Separate congregation. The couple had belonged to the Sturbridge Congregational church for around seven years, [Read More…]

Are the gods present?

“After he has lunched on his God on Sunday, / You should worship his turd on Monday.” So the French Huguenot polemical poet Agrippa d’Aubigné mocked the Catholic Eucharist. Early Protestants felt and feigned horror at the idea that Catholics believed that they chewed, swallowed, and digested the very body of Jesus Christ. They were [Read More…]

Biographies Full of Females

Who’s significant? As Chris Gehrz discussed in a recent post, his students — and most publishers — think that a “biography is a book written about a significant individuals.” Most of those individuals happen to be men in positions of political power. Presidents, kings, businessmen, and a few religious leaders thrown into the mix. This [Read More…]

The Desecration of Indian Corpses

In February 1850, Mormon settlers began a brief but bloody campaign against several bands of Ute Indians in Utah Valley. On February 13, the Mormons captured a group of Indians, promising them their lives and safety. They lied. “[W]e shall deal with them in the most summary manner as soon as another day favors us [Read More…]

A New Moral Vision

If you clicked on this link because you’re desperately seeking a new moral vision, this might not be exactly what you’re looking for. But perhaps you can find here a new vantage point from which to pursue this quest… In her new book A New Moral Vision: Gender, Religion, and the Changing Purposes of American [Read More…]

Christ Our Morning Star

Adapted from the Anxious Bench archives: My local Presbyterian church has a “Longest Night” service shortly before Christmas, recognizing that even as we celebrate the light that shines in the darkness, many of us experience considerable darkness in our lives. Perhaps we sense such darkness as we contemplate yet another year marred by terrorism and war, but [Read More…]