For the past several years we have heard much about “the vacuum in Christian leadership.” While this means different things to different people, our particular concern is that the best evangelical thinking often is not communicated from scholars to the parish leaders of the church. Scholarly books and conferences, though many, seldom directly affect nonscholars.
We feel an increased responsibility to glean the best thinking from evangelical thought leaders and to disseminate their seasoned judgments widely. We therefore are developing a think tank called the Christianity Today Institute, which will address many of today’s most pressing theological and ethical issues. More than 50 fellows and resource scholars will be involved on a continuing basis, and their work will periodically appear in this magazine in the form of special institute supplements.
We have been working on this project for the past year and sense considerable excitement. Kenneth S. Kantzer has been appointed dean of the institute, and V. Gilbert Beers has been appointed executive director. In November, they led a two-day meeting with carefully selected scholars on the subject “The Christian As Citizen.” Present were Myron Augsburger, Vernon Grounds, Nathan Hatch, Carl F. H. Henry, David McKenna, Steven Monsma, and J. I. Packer. Guests—who interacted in lively fashion—included Charles Colson, Jerry Falwell, and James Wallis.
From the extensive dialogue and research initiated by this meeting, we will publish a 32-page section on the subject in our April 19 issue. (Future institute supplements will cover such topics as “The Church’s Mission for the Rest of the Century,” and “The Sanctity of Life—the Quality of Life.”)
As executive director, Dr. Beers’s primary ...1
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