How to Be Evangelical After World Vision: The Code

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As Trevin Wax at The Gospel Coalition and the excommunication-by-farewell trend have made clear, evangelical has become code for a couple Utterly Important Things:Hell: i.e., totally for it.Homosexuality: i.e., obsessively against it.Sure, there are some underlying principles there like Penal Substitutionary Atonement Is The Gospel Or Else (which supports Hell) and the Bible Read Superficially Without Factoring In Historical Context Is Inerrant Or Else (which wars against H … [Read more...]

How to Be Evangelical After World Vision: I Mean, Why?

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In my first post on how to be evangelical after World Vision, I admittedly assumed something. Namely, that anyone would actually want to be evangelical after World Vision.I mean, why?Why would we even want to carry on this label, if the loudest voices driving the popular perception of "evangelical" are the conservative gatekeepers who have fully farewelled the centrist/nuanced, progressive, and emergence voices?Why not just adopt the more generalized "progressive Christian" or p … [Read more...]

How to Be Evangelical After World Vision: The Principle

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When several friends had a conference call with World Vision CEO Richard Stearns and found out that 10,000 child sponsorships had been dropped in the course of one week, I wept. I know there are all kinds of counter-arguments out there to the effect that the kids will be fine because money is pooled into one budget and besides there are a million other faith-based NGO's that do the same thing and it's all just a bunch of progressive political outrage, ad infinitum, etcetera. And I'm quite … [Read more...]

Ed Cyzewski: Can We Cancel the Rapture Already?

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I know that Nicholas Cage is “starring” in a summer blockbuster that relies on an inevitable and immanent rapture to scare viewers into theaters, but I’m afraid this little end times ruse needs to stop. It’s time to cancel the rapture.Really. We’ve milked this biblically suspect, historically bankrupt, literary abomination of a doctrine long enough.Did we really need a remake of the first Left Behind movie in the first place? Did we even need the first Left Behind movie after the books? … [Read more...]

Demonstrating the State of Evangelicalism Today

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Today, Thom Rainer posted a list of the "twenty most influential evangelicals in America." In light of the recent World Vision controversy, I think this list demonstrates precisely what is wrong with evangelicalism in America, at least as it is perceived and defined by most people - both insiders and outsiders. Namely, it is limited to those who are publicly conservative in their politics, against legal gay marriage (and hiring married gay people to do charity work, apparently), and limited in … [Read more...]

World Vision and the Damage Done

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What a whirlwind.First, World Vision announced a policy change that would allow married gay Christians to work for the organization, igniting the vast indignation of the conservative evangelical establishment.Then, just yesterday, less than 48 hours later, World Vision reversed their decision, issuing an apology (mainly to their conservative constituency).Several reports cite a nearly instantaneous loss of 2,000 child sponsorships when World Vision made the initial policy decision. … [Read more...]

God Hates Double Standards: Fred Phelps and the Evangelicals

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Fred Phelps is dead.And while the Westboro cult itself is refusing to mourn ("We don't worship the dead"), some counter-protesters at yesterday's Lorde concert in Kansas City graciously expressed counterintuitive condolences for the hate-group's loss.When Phelps's death was announced a few days ago, it didn't take long for evangelical condemnations to hit my feeds, some of them fierce, some of them kinder and more forgiving. Some Christians were quick to consign Phelps himself to the … [Read more...]

Pluralistic Society is the Answer, For the World Today

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When I was little there was a popular CCM song called "Jesus is the Answer." Maybe you remember it. The chorus went, simply: Jesus is the AnswerFor the world todayAbove him there's no otherJesus is the Way. The song became something of a rallying cry for the burgeoning post-Jesus Movement evangelical right, with implications for both saving souls and enacting righteous legislation. Yes, Jesus is the Answer for every down-and-out lost person who needs to get saved. And he's also the … [Read more...]

Riffing & Reviewing: Girl at the End of the World

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Christians get agitated when you use the word "cult." I found this out recently when I suggested that megachurches can produce a cultish environment, especially if they have a revered celebrity personality for a leader (hence, "cult of personality"). High-control, high-demand, high-secrecy patterns can emerge, leading to all manner of hurt and abuse. Of course, this does not only (or stereotypically) occur within megachurches, but the very suggestion of such produced strong pushback in the co … [Read more...]

Don’t Throw Rocks – Mark Driscoll’s Humble Plea?

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It's been a busy week-or-so with Mark Driscoll news and content, but I wanted to share this video from his sermon last Sunday as a (hopefully) final entry in this saga, at least for a while. It is very likely that his sermon was referencing, at least in part, some of the controversy surrounding him and Mars Hill in recent days. Mark seemed to produce a tone of humility, and, in a different part of the sermon, even gave a very vague kind of apology.In this segment, Driscoll drew out the … [Read more...]


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