Protestant Denominations: Evangelicals

Figure 1.--Surely the best know Evangelical pastor in America was the Rev. Billy Graham. Here we see him in Africa during January 1960. The press caption read, "Evangelist Graham Visits Liberian Native Village: Evangilist Billy Graham trys to attract the attentiomn of a native child hld in his mother's arms as he visits a native village about 20 miles from Monrovia, Liberia on January 20. Liberian Vice President William R. Tolbert is at right." Moither does not seem to impressed. Until World War II, Christian Evangelicals were primarily concentratted in America. After the War, especially by the 1960s, American Evangelicals began an outreach to developing countries. They have been most successful in Latin America, but there are vivrant Evangelical churches in Africa as well.

Tne National Asspciation of Evangelicals (NAE) provide an excellent basic desceiption of Evangelicals. "Evangelicals take the Bible seriously and believe in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. The term “evangelical” comes from the Greek word euangelion, meaning 'the good news' or the 'gospel'. Thus, the evangelical faith focuses on the 'good news' of salvation brought to sinners by Jesus Christ. Evangelicals are a vibrant and diverse group, including believers found in many churches, denominations and nations. Our community brings together Reformed, Holiness, Anabaptist, Pentecostal, Charismatic and other traditions. As noted in the statement “Evangelicals — Shared Faith in 'Broad Diversity', our core theological convictions provide unity in the midst of our diversity. The NAE Statement of Faith offers a standard for these evangelical convictions. Historian David Bebbington also provides a helpful summary of evangelical distinctives, identifying four primary characteristics of evangelicalism: -- Conversionism: the belief that lives need to be transformed through a 'born-again' experience and a life long process of following Jesus -- Activism: the expression and demonstration of the gospel in missionary and social reform efforts, -- Biblicism: a high regard for and obedience to the Bible as the ultimate authority, -- Crucicentrism: a stress on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross as making possible the redemption of humanity. These distinctives and theological convictions define us — not political, social or cultural trends. In fact, many evangelicals rarely use the term 'evangelical' to describe themselves, focusing simply on the core convictions of the triune God, the Bible, faith, Jesus, salvation, evangelism and discipleship." Note the leadoff phrase, 'take the Bible seriously'. Compare this to to Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and Pope Francis. They are essentially socialists who do not accept the divity of Jesus or the metaphysical aspects of their church in general, including the existence of a supernatural God. They will not come out and say that, but if you look at their sermons and statements, it is hard not to think this is where they stand. Rather they are outspoken advocates of so called 'social justice' which means to criticize capitalism which creates prosperity and promote sovialism which destroys wealth and affluence. Evangelicals in contrast are true believers who fully accecpt the metaphysical aspects of Chrustianity. Evangelicals are most associated with the United States, but they are having a major impact in Latin America. There the Catholic Church with its embrace of socialism and empty churches is declining while the Evangelical churches with its focus on the Bible is having a major impact.


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Created: 9:00 PM 7/12/2018
Last updated: 9:00 PM 7/12/2018