- Oh boy! There’s a novel “Next Christianity” coming!
- No favorites in justice?
- If she doesn’t know, you’ll never explain it.
As part of the Civil Conversations Project, Krista Tippett interviewed two guys, Gabe Lyons and Jim Daly, whose names I didn’t know because I don’t live in “their world” any more. But one of them is the new head of Focus on the Family – i.e., successor to James Dobson – which is potentially a big deal. I’d heard that the new FoF head was kinder and gentler. It looks like the other one is kind and gentle, too. Tippett titled the show/podcast “The Next Christians.”
One thing you can count on from the Evangelical world is constant reinvention to suit (within some limits, thank God, even if the limits are pretty loose) what they think the world is going to want from Christianity in the next 5 years, 10 years or more. Lyons and Daly apparently have decided that kinder and gentler is what the world will want. The military has reached the same conclusion about what the public wants is from it. Confrontational is so 70s.
If you’re not bothered yet, re-read that preceding paragraph before moving on.
How can Evangelicalism change? I thought they were “Bible only.” Has the Bible changed? Has human nature changed? Isn’t what they’re doing a sort of pandering – becoming calculated scratchers of itching ears?
It’s not that I object to kindness and gentleness. Truth be told, I think authentic Christianity is kinder, gentler, and certainly less militarist and explicitly political, than Evangelicalism has tended to be since the 70s. And I suspect that, as Lyons hints, that Evangelicalism, whose media hegemony identifies it as Real Christianity®, is largely responsible for the vociferous new atheists and and rising anti-Christian political backlash.
My real point, though, as so often, is that Evangelicalism isn’t what it thinks it is. It’s largely captive to the culture.
[Update: I listened to the podcast after musing thus on the teasers and website profiles of the two men, and commented on 9/23/12, retracting nothing about Evangelicalism generally, but favorably inclined toward Lyons and Daly.]
“In the case of justice, it shouldn’t even favour the poor.” Thus saith (or translateth) a court in Columbia, only to be smacked down for Bible-thumping in a secularist wannabe nation.
William Pfaff is not amused that our diplomats have no idea, or knowing full well choose to gull the American people (who are all too willing to be gulled) about why many Arabs are outraged at us:
“How could this happen?” Hillary Clinton demanded to be told, after the demonstrations and the attack upon the American diplomatic mission in Benghazi that killed the American ambassador to Libya and three other Americans. “How could this happen in a country we helped liberate, in a city we helped save from destruction?”
If she doesn’t know, there probably is no use in trying to explain to her—and to many other Americans—the cause of events in Benghazi and other recent manifestations of anti-Americanism in cities across the world, provoked by the YouTube video clip denigrating the prophet Muhammad …
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