Anticipating “An Evangelical Manifesto” – Part 2

USA Today has a story out in advance of the release of the “Manifesto.” There are some encouraging signs here that were missing from the AP story that I referenced in the previous post. The opening paragraph reads:

‘An “evangelical manifesto” being released today by a group of Christian scholars and theologians is expected to try to take back the term “evangelical” from politics and return it to its theological roots.’

A spokesman for the “Manifesto” says that,

“The goal is to lay down lines on the turf and go back to the root theological meaning of the term evangelical before its character is obscured and its importance is lost.”

I am all for the reclaiming “evangelical” as a primarily theological designation. As long as the “Manifesto” has a robustly biblical definition of the evangel and its implications for engagement in the public square, this could be a good thing.

The article also notes that the “Manifesto” has been revised since it was viewed by the AP. I hope they have removed the “useful idiots” line.

The USA Today piece also releases the website for the “Manifesto”: http://www.evangelicalmanifesto.com. More later.

10 Responses to Anticipating “An Evangelical Manifesto” – Part 2

  1. Paul May 7, 2008 at 12:47 am #

    Denny deleted my comment earlier. So, I’ll try it in tamer fashion this time…

    first off, this is good: “Evangelicals need to be known for what we are for: showing and sharing the good news of Christ, not only what we are against on public policy.”

    Thumbs up.

    And, Denny, regarding the “useful idiots” line, it’s not like that component doesn’t exist. Just because it stings doesn’t mean it’s not true.

  2. Brett May 7, 2008 at 12:57 am #

    He deleted mine too so I’ll try to tame it down a bit as well.

    “I am all for the reclaiming “evangelical” as a primarily theological designation. As long as the “Manifesto” has a robustly biblical definition of the evangel and its implications for engagement in the public square, this could be a good thing.”

    So you admit that the word has lost some of its meaning?

    Also, I’m curious where you get your scriptural warrant for “engaging in the public square.” Are we ever commanded to do this, or does it just sound nice and right?

  3. D.J. Williams May 7, 2008 at 8:33 am #

    Just finished reading the document, and I’d put my name to it in a heartbeat. Good and balanced words.

  4. Darius May 7, 2008 at 9:20 am #

    Well, at least Denny is consistent in deleting the “useful idiots” line. 🙂

  5. Darius May 7, 2008 at 9:21 am #

    Oops, nevermind.

  6. Jeff Lash May 7, 2008 at 10:04 am #

    I haven’t had a chance to actually read the whole document but I did catch Justin Taylor’s summary and it looks very promising. Refocusing us on the original meaning of evangelical along with a call to civility in the public square without watering down the gospel is extremely helpful. I look forward to reading the whole document tonight.

  7. Darius May 7, 2008 at 10:28 am #

    I’m on page 12 and so far it’s very solid.

  8. Darius May 7, 2008 at 11:17 am #

    I am interested in what you think of it, Denny. For my part, I think it is really good and worthy of support. I can’t imagine someone like Dobson or Colson wouldn’t sign it, unless there is some hidden agenda that they know of that I don’t. At face value, it’s something that all Christians should be able to affirm.

  9. D.J. Williams May 7, 2008 at 12:02 pm #

    I know Darius isn’t suggesting that there is one, but does everything have to have a hidden agenda? Let’s take this for what it is and get on board, rather than lambasting it for what it’s not.

  10. Paul May 7, 2008 at 12:29 pm #

    For once, Darius and I agree. It had to happen sometime.

    Thumbs up from this camp.

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