Sunday, September 16, 2007

Curry on Evangelical Amnesia

The current issue of First Things contains an excellent commentary on the depleted theological aptitude and interest of postmodern evangelicalism, entitled Evangelical Amnesia (subscription required). The article is written by Prof. Dean Curry of Messiah College.

Hopefully the Copyright police will not sic their dogs if I give you this brief teaser:

"Loss of historical memory, however, is not the only reason young evangelicals are less interested than their forebears in drawing lines in the theological sand. American evangelicalism itself has changed dramatically in the past several decades...

"...Over the past thirty years, American evangelicalism has witnessed the homogenization of its theology and the convergence of worship content and style as denominational identities have been strategically de-emphasized. Almost all evangelical churches have the same look and feel on a given Sunday..."

The vanilla-ization of evangelical churches is cause to pause and think about the relevance of our distinctives. How is one to train up one's children in the doctrines of one's church? How do I convince my children that there is any relevance in infant baptism when many of their youth group peers were not so baptized (and don't see what all the fuss is about)? 'Tis a challenge. Curry cites data that suggest a full 60% of Evangelical youths will not continue as churchgoers as they pass into adulthood...

If you have a subscription, do give this brief article a read. If not, now seems like a good time to log onto the First Things website and send in for a free trial copy (no, I'm not a paid advertiser).

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