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Five Fundamentals for an Evangelical Future

Written by Ed Stetzer on . Posted in Ed Stetzer

The sky isn’t falling for evangelicals

Many say it’s been a tough decade for Evangelicals. The media says that Christianity is in great decline. The media, and some Christian authors, predict doom and gloom.

Yet, the actual numbers tell a different story for evangelical Christians. (You can read much more about that in these links.)

Issues in the Future of Evangelicalism

Nominal Nation: The Shift Away from Self-Identified Christianity

The Rapid Rise of Nondenominational Christianity

Yet, that does not mean that all is well.

I do think we are in challenging times. The last ten years have brought us to that reality. There have been a few distractions along the way.

The emerging church came promising answers to evangelicals for a “third way,” but flamed out and now looks more like the avant-garde wing of mainline Protestantism.

Some tried to withdraw from culture, but culture just kept coming.

Some slowly replaced regular gospel proclamation with moralistic therapeutic deism—being good makes you a better person, and that makes “the man upstairs” happy.

Still others were so driven by pragmatism that they eventually began to look like a collection of programs and strategies, devoid of the message of Jesus.

So, what’s next. What needs to happen for the new few years?

I don’t know that this answers everything, but a few things keep coming to mind as I look to the future. To thrive, I think there are at least five things we need to face the next ten years:

1. A clear understanding of the gospel. Too many have assumed it, but we need to teach it. The gospel is not you do, it’s Jesus did. People don’t need to be taught to turn over a new leaf—they need to receive and live out a new life. That new life is from Jesus’ ...

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