Friday, September 19, 2008

How to be Evangelical without being Conservative - Roger Olson

"Gradually the impression has sunk into the American mind that being a conservative Christian, being evangelical, and being narrow, rigid, militant, and angry are the same."

So begins Roger Olson in How to be Evangelical without being Conservative.

In this short book Olson manages to tackle a number of religious/social/political issues that are often unnecessarily used to polarize viewpoints, while attempting to redeem words like "evangelical." Each chapter begins by asking a relevant but often unspoken question: What does it mean to "Take the Bible Seriously Without Literalism"? Or to "Celebrate America without Nationalism"? To even to be "Religionless without Secularism"?

As we enter the final stages of the Presidential race I encourage you to read this book. Olson does not present a partisan argument, but encourages readers to think beyond pundit labels and media slant. You may not agree with all of his thoughts, but his reasoned approach and personal tone are worth reading. This book also includes a glowing foreword by Scot McKnight in which he says:

"This book reminds us that the two-option approach so popular in our world today, two options that are held with utter certitude by both sides, is not always the right one. Sometimes, in fact, there is a Third Way, a way that might not be so cocksure and certain, but just might be 'Here I stand, so help me God.'"

Check back every Friday for Andrew's updates on new Zondervan resources for ministry and Bible study! Andrew Rogers is a Promotions Manager for Zondervan.

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