Friday, August 15, 2014
So what does it mean to "be evangelical?"...Those are all good things, but that's no where near enough to get the job done when it comes to being wholly and fully Christian. Those are all a "me and God" thing - there is nothing about the church or the other generally.
... the primary dimension of evangelical identity: a personal experience of faith. We use lots of language to describe it: being born again, being saved, conversion, and so forth. But the root of evangelical identity involves a personal commitment to Jesus Christ....
A second dimension of being evangelical relates closely to the first: evangelicals experience a warm, personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. As one old revivalist hymn puts it, "He walks with me, and he talks with me."...
Third, most evangelicals have what I would call a "devotional" relationship to the Bible. By "devotional" I mean that we read the Bible with the expectation that it will address our lives in life-giving ways....
If Christianity end with me getting my goodies (personal salvation, a feel good "kick" from the morning devotional, feeling good about myself...) then it is little different that "self-actualization" or any of the other thousand of self-help programs and processes that fill the world today. Beign a Christian starts and ends not with us, but with God. Any discussion of being something Christian that does not have something in it about the nature of God and His sovereignty is short of the mark.
And somehow, I think that defines a lot of what is wrong with the church in America these days.
Christianity definitions sovereignty