Podcast

Are You Over Evangelicalism? A Conversation with Ethicist David Gushee

By Andy Hale

It is hard to be a New York Mets fan. I know it could be worse, like a Mariners fanbase that has never witnessed their team make it to a World Series or the Rangers, Padres, Rays, Rockies, or Brewers fans that have made it to the big one but never won it. 

It’s just so hard to watch my team have a brilliant roster and pitching staff every year, only to mess it up by the end of May. I even thought that a shortened COVID-19 season would be in their favor, but they have already started the season in the pits.

I’m too faithful to go somewhere else. So, I’ll watch the season with envious eyes toward the fans of the teams who will play baseball this season.

For many who were raised Evangelical, you can relate to this sentiment.

And why not when the Evangelical church has lost roughly 25 million members in the last few decades. Some of those departing have gone on to other Christian faith traditions, while many have just left the Church altogether. There is something amiss with this movement and many of its members.

“Post-evangelicals are abandoning Church too. Some are leaving for reasons peculiar to the American evangelical experience. Those reasons begin with disillusionment over teachings that are viewed as harmful to the vulnerable,” said David Gushee on the CBF Podcast. “Most are leaving in a state of trauma, reporting their evangelical experience as one of abuse or violence.”

Gushee is the Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics and Director of the Center for Theology and Public Life at Mercer University. He is the author of a new book, After Evangelicalism: The Path to a New Christianity.

We sat down with the scholar to discuss the disillusion and tension among post and existing Evangelicals. 

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This podcast episode is brought to you by Fuller Seminary, The Center for Congregational Health, and Baptist Seminary of Kentucky.

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Andy Hale created and hosts the podcast of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. Hale is the senior pastor of University Baptist Church of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, following eight years as the founding pastor of Mosaic Church of Clayton and five years as CBF’s church start specialist. Follow on Twitter @haleandy

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