overheard: evangelicals a liberal can love
in this morning's online edition of the nyt, op-ed columnist nicholas kristof calls for bleeding heart liberals to reach out and "build a common cause with bleeding heart conservatives." throughout the short piece kristof introduces the readers to the exponential influence evangelicals such as rick warren are having on global poverty initiatives and celebrates - along with so many of us - the long belated death of the religious right.
much like kristof, i am excited by the recent sea change in evangelical priorities and have been both encouraged and challenged by the great work organizations such as saddleback church and the international justice mission are doing throughout the world. however, as a churchman, i cannot help but fear that the leadership in many evangelical churches will utilize the current interest in social justice as merely a means to catalyze "growth" in their attraction oriented churches. if our churches passionately sound forth Christ's call for justice and liberation (see Lk. 4:16-21) but fail to challenge our congregants to realign their economic, social and spiritual lives so that they can act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with their God, then our sermons and lessons will simply be a sophisticated example of oratory intended to tickle our people's ears.
by God's grace, because of Christ and through the power of the Holy Spirit, may the evangelical church not only lift up the call for justice, but live as a people of justice in a profoundly unjust world.
read more of kristof's article here