Six features of postconservative evangelicals (Jesus Creed)

Over on Jesus Creed, Scot McKnight summarizes Six features of postconservative evangelicals from Roger Olson’s Reformed and Always Reforming. He leads in with “Friends, this is the singular contribution of this book and it will be discussed for years to come, and this postconservatism is one of the reasons why many are attracted to and sympathetic with the emerging movement.”

  1. Transformation before information.
  2. Theology is a pilgrimage and a journey rather than a discovery and a conquest.
  3. Dissatisfaction with conservative evangelicalism’s reliance upon Enlightenment and modern modes of thought.
  4. Its vision for evangelicalism is not shaped by a “who is in and who is out.” Postconservatives are centered sets while conservatives have boundaries.
  5. The enduring essence of the Christian faith is spiritual experience rather than doctrinal belief.
  6. Holds relatively lightly to tradition while respecting the Great Tradition of the Church.

McKnight comments:

All evangelicals believe, at some level, in the corrigibility of doctrine; the question is whether they do the correcting or whether they take a defensive stance every time correction is suggested. At that moment one sees the postconservative from the conservative. It’s not about claim; it’s about capacity and willingness to correct.

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