Devo's Blog

Friday, March 17, 2006

Advice for Evangelicals

Jason Byassee has some advice for evangelicals in an article published by Christianity Today entitled, "The Almost Formerly Important: Lessons of the old mainline for the new mainline," where he speaks about the dangers inherent in wedding religion with political/social action:

C. S. Lewis's Screwtape advised his nephew Wormwood: "Once you have made the world an end and faith a means, you have almost won your man, and it makes very little difference what kind of worldly end he is pursuing. Provided that meetings, pamphlets, policies, movements, causes, and crusades matter more to him than prayers and sacraments and charity, he is ours." We mainliners were once offered the deal you have now - social action in exchange for faithfulness - and we bit hard. We're so far out of political power now that we're remembering the first task of the church is to be the church, not to play chaplain to a political party or nation. It's tempting to trade fidelity for influence, but it's hard to get fidelity back, and influence doesn't satisfy.

This is a particularly apropros admonition in my view.

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