World Evangelical leaders confer at Wheaton

Wheaton College Billy Graham Center - Wikipedia

By Giselle Gaytan - Posted at The Wheaton Record:

A group of 60 evangelical leaders met on Monday, April 17 and Tuesday, April 18 in the Billy Graham Center to discuss the future of American evangelicalism in the context of the term’s current political associations.

“I do think the name [Evangelical] has never been held in lower public esteem. And since we can’t really avoid it, we do need to reclaim the name if we can,” said well-known pastor and author Timothy Keller, who attended the gathering. “The name is tied to the behavior of visible churches and institutions and leaders who represent evangelicalism to the world.” The name can be reclaimed, Keller said, if the behavior of many of these representatives changes.

Associate Professor Politics and Law and Director of the Center for Faith, Politics and Economics David Iglesias attended the evangelical consultation. He told the Record about the political factors that made the evangelical consultation necessary and its political importance today.

According to Iglesias, Christians overseas now wonder if the American church focuses so extensively on political involvement that the involvement is detrimental to the Christian mission of sharing the good news of the Gospel. He said it is important to show them “there is a large remnant of American evangelicals who have not lost sight of their primary spiritual obligation of sharing our faith.”