Last in the series “Evangelicals in Search of Identity”

Many evangelicals, longing for spiritual normalcy in the best sense of the word, are quite ready to go beyond obsolete institutional loyalties and to follow more challenging life charts. Desiring the evangelical community to be what it ought to be, they are ready to venture upon more biblical ways. But they will not be bludgeoned unpersuaded into new paths. They are waiting for trusted leaders who will rally fragmented forces to comprehend and carry out the new vision of a uniting task.

Often, unfortunately, these leaders champion their own special causes as the superhighway into the future. Many discerning laymen and clergymen know, however, that a numb conscience is one of Satan’s choice wishes for the evangelical community. Such a conscience reconciles Christians to the pressing needs of the age. To rely solely on already existing resources and on frontier techniques perpetuates evangelical deficiencies.

Fortunately the evangelical movement is not, for all its tensions, deeply haunted by a pluralism that embraces radically contradictory beliefs. Evangelicalism insists and relies, moreover, on the regenerating reality of the Holy Spirit to spiritually enliven those who find forgiveness of sins through the crucified and risen Lord, and it demonstrates much of the moral power that distinguishes a redeemed people from their secular milieu. In our sexually adolescent and aberrational age, evangelicalism fosters wholesome family resources. In a time when for multitudes work lacks meaning and challenge, it can define vocation in terms of divine calling and human service. In a land of greying goals and values, it can stress anew the nation’s answerability to God, who gave it ...

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