Guest / Limited Access /
Why Catholics and Evangelicals Can Be United Against Nihilism
Image: Photo by Erik Stenbakken
Why Catholics and Evangelicals Can Be United Against Nihilism

In 1985, the year Charles Colson became a Christianity Today columnist, Gordon College professor Thomas Howard joined the Roman Catholic Church. CT devoted about seven pages to a special report on the conversion of this scion of an elite evangelical family. In 2012, it is hard to imagine the anguish that lay behind CT's handwringing.

At CT, we are under no illusion that the doctrines of salvation and the church taught by the medieval Western church are good for the soul. We believe that the Protestant Reformers accomplished a great work for God in renewing those doctrines through close attention to the teaching of the apostles and the church fathers. However, you can credit Colson, who died on April 21, for a major part of evangelicals' reduced anxiety about relations with Roman Catholics.

Colson became a Christian—an evangelical Christian—as an adult. He did not acquire skepticism of all things Catholic with his mother's milk. Instead, when he learned his theology from key evangelical theologians, he paid particular attention to the words and deeds of the great Dutch theologian and politician Abraham Kuyper (died 1920). Kuyper carefully articulated the doctrinal and philosophical differences between Rome and his beloved Geneva. Yet he admired Romanism's vigor in countries where it became disestablished. Kuyper believed that in the fight against modernism, Protestant Christianity could be effective only if it partnered with Roman Catholics.

Colson, like Kuyper, was concerned about the effects of modernism and later postmodernism on contemporary culture. And like Kuyper, he believed that unless believers are equipped with the critical tools of worldview thinking, they are unlikely to make any headway in redeeming ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Read These NextSee Our Latest
RecommendedWhere are the Mainline and Progressive Evangelical Voices Speaking Up after that Planned Parenthood Tragedy?
Where are the Mainline and Progressive Evangelical Voices Speaking Up after that Planned Parenthood Tragedy?
Progressive Christians promised us they would be prophetic voices among the Democratic party. Where are you?
TrendingMelinda Gates: ‘I’m Living Out My Faith in Action’
Melinda Gates: ‘I’m Living Out My Faith in Action’
One of the wealthiest and most controversial women in the world believes that all lives have equal value. She’s willing to spend $3.6 billion a year to prove her point.
Editor's PickWhat Having Millions of Followers Taught Me About Christian Dialogue
What Having Millions of Followers Taught Me About Christian Dialogue
Full House actress: Let’s stop attacking each other with Bible verses.
Comments
Christianity Today
Why Catholics and Evangelicals Can Be United Against Nihilism
hide thisJune June

In the Magazine

June 2012

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.