Can you guess who said this about evangelicalism? (no googling!)

Can you guess made the following statement about evangelicalism? No googling allowed – I just want to hear the first guess that comes to your mind. Share your reactions to the quote as well. On Monday I’ll reveal the answer and post my own comment related to the quote.

“Today, Protestant [Evangelicalism] although heir-apparent to the supernaturalist gospel of the Biblical and Reformation minds, is a stranger, in its predominant spirit, to the vigorous social interests of its ideological forebears. Modern [Evangelicalism] does not explicitly sketch the social implications of its message for the non-Christian world; it does not challenge the injustices of the totalitarianisms, the secularisms of modern education, the evils of racial hatred, the wrongs of current labor-management relations, the inadequate bases of international dealings. It has ceased to challenge Caesar and Rome, as though in futile resignation and submission to the triumphant Renaissance mood. The apostolic Gospel stands divorced from a passion to right the world. The Christian social imperative is today in the hands of those who understand it in sub-Christian terms.”

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10 Responses to Can you guess who said this about evangelicalism? (no googling!)

  1. 4jumpingbeans says:

    Ouch. And pointedly worth humble reflection… hmmm… well, I don’t know who said this, but I would like to make a few assumptions – perhaps even potential observations. So here goes.
    First of all, well read people write well. So, a writer – likely a scholar, with broad interests and specific passions. This person is immersed in social commentary, has great respect for history, and a love for the Church. I think he/she spoke publicly, wrote often and was significantly involved in the local community. I think Wadholm is onto something in suggesting Bruce, but more because I think our writer here was writing in an earlier time. My guess is that these are words spoken before the fullness of their time – that the speaker was not aware of how very much more these words would become reality. That this is a picture of worlds colliding and a call to attention.

    • Nice observations. Very good. Certainly a scholar (wrote a 6 volume theology, plus several other books), was also a good leader. Love and respect for the church, check! And yes, one of the reasons that I love the quote is that it speaks just as well into today as it did in the past.

  2. Rick Wadholm Jr. says:

    I’ll go with the late FF Bruce…just seems like a fun answer. 🙂

  3. jwheels says:

    I’d say Greg Boyd, but I don’t think he cares if we challenge Caesar all that much. He’d rather just leave Caesar out of it altogether, wherever possible.

    • Nice try! Yes, some good resonance with Boyd’s thought, but as you note he’d probably be cautious about the political activism (I wonder how Boyd would view things if he were a Canadian? A very different history and church-state relationship).

  4. Ryan Turnbull says:

    Stanley Hauerwas?

  5. C Witzke says:

    sounds like Schaeffer to me! (the founder of L’Abri – not his son)

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