Evangelicals, Social Justice, and Schism

Juicy Ecumenism | 10/15/2018 | Joshua Arnold
smnth28 (Posted by) Level 3
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The “Statement on Social Justice and the Gospel” has crystallized a deep divide among evangelicals on how to view race relations in America. Some evangelical leaders have signed the statement, which now has over 9,000 signatures, yet many prominent evangelical leaders refuse to sign.

When I began to research this piece, I intended to document the major voices and organizations that have crossed swords as this controversy unfolded. Instead, I will only touch on the arguments they have made. Partly, this is to avoid uncalled-for personal attacks. I have shared intimate fellowship with church communities in both camps, and I consider churches and their pastors on both sides to be models of orthodox Reformed teaching and faithful Christian living. More importantly, if this article adds to the division between groups of faithful Christians, then I will have hurt the cause of Christ. Paul rebuked the church in Corinth for following specific teachers instead of finding their identity in Christ alone. Given the popularity of the preachers involved, if I were to name them, I fear I may prompt some readers to espouse similar unbiblical factions. Learning which preachers are on which side is not difficult (especially with links included below), but Christ and his Church should be the emphasis—not men.

Split - Justice

What caused the split over social justice?

Evangelical confusion about social justice dates back at least to 2014. One pastor named the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and the ensuing race riots as the moment that shattered the evangelical movement. Evangelicals could not agree how to respond, and many began searching for an explanation.

System - Policies - Practices - Representations - Norms

“A system in which public policies, institutional practices, cultural representations, and other norms work in various, often reinforcing ways to perpetuate racial group inequity. It identifies dimensions of our history and culture that have allowed privileges associated with...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Juicy Ecumenism
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