This time, some Christian intellectuals are standing against cultural engagement

Today's Washington Post has what one of the CT editors calls an "almost sympathetic" account of Redeem the Vote, the Christian tour that combines CCM and voter registration.

"It's a fledgling effort and the rocker element still has a slightly forced feel, as when Democrats on the campaign trail appear with soldiers in uniform," writes political reporter Hanna Rosin, who was on the religion beat during the past presidential election. "Nobody mentions Bush or Kerry, and these get-out-the-vote efforts insist they are nonpartisan," but, she says, one is hard-pressed to find a Kerry supporter. "What counts as debate here is Justine Record and William Rassman, two friends from nearby Marion, in a heated discussion about whether God directly determined Bush's election and the Iraq war (he says) or whether human free will had some small hand in it (she says)."

The Redeem the Vote campaign is partly evidence, writes Rosin, that "evangelicals have long passed the point where they expect their kids to sing in the gospel choir and ignore the rest of the world."

But might there be a backlash?

In some ways, it seems the tables are turning. In his Breakpoint commentary last Wednesday, Charles Colson criticized Wheaton College historian Mark Noll's Christian Century article on why he's not voting—and hasn't in the last several presidential elections. For those of you who missed Noll's column, here's the main point:

Seven issues seem to me to be paramount at the national level: race, the value of life, taxes, trade, medicine, religious freedom and the international rule of law. In my mind, each of these issues has a strong moral dimension. My position on each ...
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Ted Olsen
Ted Olsen is Christianity Today's managing editor for news and online journalism. He wrote the magazine's Weblog—a collection of news and opinion articles from mainstream news sources around the world—from 1999 to 2006. In 2004, the magazine launched Weblog in Print, which looks for unexpected connections and trends in articles appearing in the mainstream press. The column was later renamed "Tidings" and ran until 2007.
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