The Case for Converting Kings

Os Guinness on how to prevent the American experiment from flopping.
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Os Guinness, British author of The American Hour and The Call, has pursued two passions: to make sense of the gospel to the world (apologetics) and to make sense of the world to the church (cultural analysis). Born in China to missionary parents, Guinness claims a rich spiritual heritage of writers, scientists, missionaries, reformers—and Irish brewers. In 1991 he Conver founded the Trinity Forum to help senior executives and political leaders grapple with cultural issues in the context of faith. The latest Forum curriculum, on faith and freedom in America, arrives at a time of intense national debate about the role of religion in public life. This summer NavPress began publishing the Trinity Forum Study Series with When No One Sees: The Importance of Character in an Age of Image.

Why did you launch the Trinity Forum?

Our aim is to help bring about the transformation of society through the transformation of leaders. How do you change society? Marxists pretended to work through the proletarian revolution—they never did. They worked through the gatekeepers, the people astride the doors of influence and power. And one of the central weaknesses of evangelicalism is its populism, leaving the thought-leaders out. The great model was William Wilberforce, who labored in Parliament to abolish the British slave trade. He reached people like himself: leaders.

But isn't the gospel's greatest appeal to the humble? And what about the apostle Paul's warning that "the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God's sight"?

We've overinterpreted Paul in 1 Corinthians. Who is the first convert in Cyprus in Acts? The governor—the very top man in Cyprus. Many have ignored that by saying "not many mighty, not many powerful." But if you look at the ...

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