“It wasn’t even intentional on my part. I just noticed a few weeks ago that I had stopped describing…”

2016/03/03 § Leave a comment

“It wasn’t even intentional on my part. I just noticed a few weeks ago that I had stopped describing myself to people as an “evangelical.” I had begun, subconsciously, to say that I am a “gospel Christian.” When I caught myself doing this, I wondered why and the answer wasn’t long in coming.

The word “evangelical” has become almost meaningless this year, and in many ways the word itself is at the moment subverting the gospel of Jesus Christ.

[…]

For years, secular progressives have said that evangelical social action in America is not about religious conviction but all about power. They have implied that the goal of the Religious Right is to cynically use the “moral” to get to the “majority,” not the other way around.

This year, a group of high-profile old-guard evangelicals has proven these critics right. But thank God, that’s not the whole story.

The word “evangelical” isn’t, first of all, about American politics. The word is rooted in the Greek word for gospel, good news for sinners through the life, death, resurrection and reign of Jesus of Nazareth as the son of God and anointed ruler of the cosmos.

[…]

Evangelical is a magnificent word — a word that resonates with the gospel dissent of Martin Luther and the gospel crusades of Billy Graham. More than that, it is rooted in the New Testament itself that tells us that Jesus saves. And I’m not ready to give it up yet.

But you will forgive me if, at least until this crazy campaign year is over, I choose just to say that I’m a gospel Christian.”

Russell Moore, “Russell Moore: Why this election makes me hate the word ‘evangelical’”

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