As evangelicalism has pursued cultural influence, it has not been without eloquent voices of caution from within its ranks. Many have pointed out the errors of our ways, and have called for repentance and a new direction. Thus far, few have heeded the message.
David F. Wells
Fundamentalism was a walled city; evangelicalism is a city. Fundamentalism always had an air of embattlement about it, of being an island in a sea of unremitting hostility. Evangelicalism has reacted against this sense of psychological isolation. It has lowered the barricades. . . The great sin in the eyes of Fundamentalism is to compromise; the great sin in the eyes of evangelicalism is to be too narrow.
The church is not just another interest group or political action committee. Our goals must never be set by the standards of this fallen world. . . Our ultimate purpose must never be to “change the culture” but to honor the living God.
Michael Scott Horton
We are going to have to realize that America is a mission field, not a battlefield.
James M. Boice
To the extent that the doctrines of the Bible no longer guide preaching, teaching, publishing, evangelism, worship, and the daily life of the people of God, to that extent evangelicalism has declined to become a movement that is shaped only by popular whim and sentimentality.
We are not to be of the world. But neither are we to be out of it. Both extremes malign God’s intentions for us and those that God has placed around us. Both obscure the divine imperative to simultaneously live justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God.
David F. Wells
It is surely a great irony that what evangelicals have most surrendered in the hope of becoming culturally relevant is what, in fact, now makes them culturally irrelevant. This is true of each of the major defining characteristics of evangelicalism: the revealing work of the Father, the redeeming work of the Son, and the regenerating work of the Spirit.