In 1976 the magazine Newsweek ran a cover story entitled ‘The Year of the Evangelicals’, a clear indication that by the mid-1970s evangelical Christianity had attained public prominence in American media and politics. But about the same time, a poll of Americans who considered themselves to be evangelicals indicated that fifty per cent of them could not name even half of the Ten Commandments.
What then is an evangelical? Confusion over the meaning of the term is causing some to give up identifying themselves as Evangelicals, while others insist that any attempt to delineate the boundaries of Evangelicalism should be abandoned, Dr Beeke accepts as Evangelical, those brothers who accept the authority of Scripture, trust only in the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour and believe that the historic reality of Christ’s atoning death and resurrection provide the only hope of salvation. Danger arises when there is no real understanding of such doctrines.
Joel R. Beeke (PhD, Westminster Seminary) is president and professor of systematic theology and homiletics at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary; a pastor of the Heritage Reformed Congregation in Grand Rapids, Michigan; editor of Banner of Sovereign Grace Truth; editorial director of Reformation Heritage Books; and a prolific author.
“At a ministers’ fraternal a young pastor described how he took a stepladder and climbed up to the notice board of his church and deleted the word “evangelical” because he maintained that the term has become so wide that it no longer means anything. An experienced pastor present reproved him and told him to go and fetch that stepladder and restore the word “evangelical” because “evangelical” has a long and rich meaning which we must always defend and continue to define. This is exactly what Joel Beeke does for us.
He explains how “evangelical” can be watered down, and warns us of the inadequacy of minimal statements of faith. He exposes the fallacy that Roman Catholics are evangelical. He shows that we must never leave the 16th Century Reformation heritage out of our evangelicalism. I heartily commend What is evangelicalism? It is informative, highly relevant and written in a challenging pithy style.” – Erroll Hulse, Editor Reformation Today and director of African Pastors’ Conferences.
“This is a clarion call to Evangelicals to consider their ways. Joel Beeke writes against widespread Evangelical identity crisis. Confusion over the meaning of the term is causing some to give up identifying themselves as Evangelicals, while others insist that any attempt to delineate the boundaries of Evangelicalism should be abandoned. Dr. Beeke accepts as Evangelical those brothers who accept the authority of Scripture, trust only in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and believe that the historic reality of Christ’s atoning death and resurrection provide the only hope of salvation. Danger arises when there is no real understanding of such doctrines.
He urges definition of the great truths of the gospel and insists that a heartfelt knowledge is vital to the health of biblical Christianity. To achieve this he pleads that those who profess the name of Evangelical return to their roots and consider the writings of the teachers of historic orthodoxy; by doing this they will not only enrich themselves and their churches, but they will promote a true evangelical unity. This earnest appeal is warmly recommended.” – Robert Oliver, Faculty member for Church History and Historical Theology, LTS
- Weight: 0.5 lb
- Publisher: Evangelical Press
- Pages: 78
- Binding: Paperback
- Discount: Bulk Buy