We have to work with what we have: large numbers of people who identify as evangelical and don’t adhere to its doctrinal commitments, and large numbers of people who adhere to common doctrinal commitments but don’t identify as evangelical. The way forward will be to better understand people in the first category (who have an affinity for the labels “evangelical” and “born again”), as well as our friends in the second (who don’t).
These identity crises have come and gone before, to the point we may view them as inherent in the fabric of the evangelical movement. The good news is, we don’t have to choose between preserving the best of our evangelical heritage and reforming whatever needs to change. At its core, evangelicalism is about renewal. That’s the best thing evangelicals have to offer, and right now, that’s what we need the most.
This article originally appeared here.