Progressive Christian Scorn for Conservative Christians

Here’s a thoughtful post from Timothy Dalrymple chastising “progressive evangelicals” who publicly blame conservative Christians for the culture wars that have given Christianity a bad name. He concludes,

There is a growing genre — call it Progressive Christian Scorn Literature — about the scorn progressive Christians have for conservative evangelicals.  It seems to be celebrated on the Left as a kind of righteous comeuppance for the Christian Right, and it wins the applause of the Left for the Christian Left.  But it’s wrong and it needs to be called out.  It’s neither winsome, nor loving, nor constructive, nor right.  It will not improve our witness because it’s soaked through with bitterness and rancor…

We cannot get beyond the culture wars by simply joining one side and lobbing bombs against the other.  We cannot improve the reputation of the church by throwing half of it under the bus.

If you read the rest of the article, Dalrymple gives two recent examples of what he’s talking about. You can read about them and the rest of his article here.

I would tweak one detail of Dalrymple’s essay. It seems to me that the left wing of the “evangelical” movement is swinging further and further left as the years roll by. It is not uncommon to hear some “progressive evangelicals” calling into question the necessity of faith in Christ for salvation, the inerrancy of the Bible, or Christ’s teaching on sexual ethics. These are not marginal points of evangelical faith and practice but lie at the very heart of things. At some point, I think we have to wonder whether it is appropriate to call such folks “evangelicals” at all.


  • dr. james willingham

    Well, there are conservatives who do fail to add lustre to the faith they represent, but that is true for representatives of every part of the spectrum, from right to left. And, if any one cares to look, they will find a devil among the apostles as well as many who really failed.

  • Steve Martin

    Progressives make their living off of attacking what is good and established and free.

    They tear down. That is their specialty. They coherece people for ‘their own good’.

    Maybe some do deserve it, but most get caught in the net either way.

    This will only get worse as we approach the time when the Word will no longer be heard.(I believe)

    I can’t wait (but I’ll have to) for our Lord to wrap all of this up. But He is patient.

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