A Plea for Conservative Radicals and Radical Conservatives

Article by Ronald J. Sider

Never before in this century have evangelical Christians been so involved in public life. From Sojourners magazine to Evangelicals for Social Action, from the Christianity Today Institute to Pat Robertson’s School of Public Policy and Jerry Falwell’s Liberty Federation, theologically conservative Christians have entered the political arena with a new intensity and sophistication. But ironically, …

A Voice for Grunchy Conservatives

Article by David Dark

Book Review: Grunchy Cons: How Birkenstocked Burkeans, Gun-Loving Organic Gardeners, Evangelical Free-Range Farmers, Hip Homeschooling Mamas, Right-Wing Nature Lovers, and Their Diverse Tribe of Countercultural Conservatives Plan to Save America (or at Least the Republican Party). By Rod Dreher. Crown, 272 pp. I think I might qualify as a Crunchy Conservative. I wear Birkenstocks whenever …

Assessing the Concerns of the Religious Right

Article by John C. Bennett

There has always been a ‘religious right.” Perhaps the first Christian instance of this phenomenon was the resistance of the Jerusalem Christians to Paul’s liberal tendencies, as recorded in Acts. Though Paul provided many proof texts for future conservatives, on the greatest issue of his time he was adventurously liberal, opening the church to the …

Charismatic and Mainline

Article by John Dart

On Passion Sunday in 1960, the Episcopal pastor of a growing parish in suburban Los Angeles revealed his covert spiritual experiences of recent months. Unknown to most parishioners, he and 70 other members had been “speaking in tongues” — making utterances that most mainline churches equated with overheated Pentecostalism and Holy Roller tent revivals. Dennis …

Liberalism After 9/11

Article by E.J. Dionne

Dionne, who is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, has taken a special interest in the place of religion in politics, chairing the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life and editing (with John DiIulio Jr.) What’s God Got to Do with the American Experiment? (2000). His 1991 book Why Americans Hate Politics was …

Past Imperfect: History and the Prospect for Liberalism – I

Article by William R. Hutchison

Although the term liberal Protestantism carries several meanings, and is thus more than a little troublesome, the choice of that label enables one to begin with an upbeat answer. Does liberal Protestantism — as a species of thought, faith and social commitment — have a future? I believe religious liberalism, thus understood, is doing rather well …

Slime-master: Inside the ‘vast right-wing conspiracy’

Article by Gary Dorrien

Book Review: Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative. By David Brock. (Crown, 336 pp.) Long before Bill Clinton trashed his presidency by lying about his adulterous relationship with Monica Lewinsky, the political right heaped scurrilous accusations upon him and sought to expel him from office. The litany of charges pervaded conservative magazines …

The Challenge of Conservative Theology

Article by Peter M. Schmeichen

At the very time when ecumenical Protestants are drawing closer to Roman Catholics, the rift within Protestantism is growing wider. The ecumenical and neo-orthodox movements, as well as joint participation in graduate theological education, have not brought the different traditions together. In fact, the gap between conservatives and the neo-orthodox and liberals is growing wider …

Ups and Downs of the Religious Right

Article by Leon Howell

It’s a puzzle: the Christian Coalition is fighting off extinction, but the Religious Right seems as powerful as ever. "Christian Coalition losing clout" headlined the (Norfolk) Virginian-Pilot on February 19, the day of the pivotal South Carolina Republican presidential primary. The article quoted Furman University professor James Guth, a longtime chronicler of the coalition: "If …