“A religious right that is not able to tie public action and cultural concern to a theology of gospel and mission will die and will deserve to die.” –Russell Moore
In this year’s Erasmus Lecture at First Things, Russell Moore offers a striking critique of the religious right of decades past and present, pointing the way toward a renewal in public theology and a revitalization of Christian institutions:
Alas, while many the movement’s conversations have often focused on key issues and the right high-level policy aims, far too often, it has suffered from a narrow theological imagination and an increasingly cynical political pragmatism. As a result, we’ve found ourselves reaching for narrow policy wins and waging gruesome short-term political combat at the cost of clear Gospel witness and long-term culture-level action and institution-building.
As Moore concludes, a renewed religious right will require a more holistic and generational view of human flourishing and the People of God — one that doesn’t forget or neglect the heart of the Gospel or confuse it with moralism and political privilege: (more…)