Considering the current discussion on the blog about the crisis in Evangelicalism, I found that Michael Spencer posted on this subject a few days ago. He lists 13 critical problems facing contemporary evangelicalism. I agree with all thirteen. I will also add mine to the end in brackets.

1. Vast evidence of a growing doctrinal deterioration on the essentials and implications of the Gospel.

2. The expansion and influence of the “Prosperity Gospel” throughout evangelicalism.

3. The loss of the concept of meaningful church membership and the rise of the “audience-only” model of church participation.

4. The loss of the theological “center” in mainline churches at the precise time many evangelicals are open to reconsidering the mainline vision of worship, especially in Anglicanism.

5. The triumph and glorification of unchecked pragmatic entrepreneurialism, especially in worship, but in all areas of evangelical life.

6. The corrosive and compromised influence of Christian publishing in shaping evangelicalism, as exemplified in the rise of Joel Osteen, The Prayer of Jabez and the Prosperity Gospel.

7. Growing chaos in the theological and practical preparation of pastors, especially in the “emerging” church.

8. The failure of the “Seeker” model to use its vast resources and influence to produce a Christian counter-culture or challenge the “program centered/facilities centered” model of evangelicalism.

9. The lack of rising “Billy Graham” quality new leaders for the larger evangelical movement.

10. The failure of most evangelical denominations to broadly embrace and effectively mentor the current church planting movement.

11. The demise of quality Biblical preaching at the hands of technology and entertainment.

12. The apparently fatal infection of much of the emerging church movement with the failed theology of 20th century liberalism.

13. The cannibalism of evangelicalism on issues related to theological, cultural, social and political diversity.

[14. The inability of evangelicalism to find its roots in the history of the church.]

[15. Inability to provide effective discipleship to new believers which involves a grounding in the faith both in belief and practice.]

[16. Intellectual apathy and laziness.]

[17. Inability to effectively engage culture due to stereotypes created from the above expressed points.]

[18. Movement to a short term model of missions which fails at sufficiently incarnating the Gospel, gravitating toward the unnecessary reproduction of western evangelicalism which suffers from all the above expressed points expressed.]

Do you have any to add? Do you agree or disagree with the ones presented?

C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

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