The Pew Forum recently sponsored a conference concerning faith and politics. Specifically, they sought to understand how Catholics and evangelicals might impact the ’08 elections. There is a link here to the story, which comes with transcripts, interviews, audio, and Q& A. It is all quite informative if you have the time and the interest in faith and politics. I would encourage you as you consider these issues to realize just how fluid the word “evangelical” has become. David Wells’ new book argues for the inceneration of the term for yet another, better-defined monicker for Christian. The fluidity of the term evangelical is on display in this article concerning faith and politics. The article asserts (and I think rightly) that evangelicals are now concerned with social justice issues. D. A. Carson has demonstrated in his works on the emergent church that the new wave of emergent Christians is simply a leftover liberalism. Given that liberalism championed social justice issues, one wonders what it means to be a new evangelical. What I am looking for in the “new” evangelical concern over social issues is the distinction between its concerns for social issues as contrasted with the liberal concern for social issues. Also, one might question why Falwell, Dobson, and Kennedy are dismissed as being unconcerned about social issues; it seems to me these men have shown great concern for social issues. The entire ordeal is peculiar to me. I’m wondering whether the issue at root is not related to environmentalism. My hunch is that it is.
What do you think?