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07/30/2010

Audio: Cizik, post-schism

by Jeremy Hooper

During a 2008 appearance on NPR's "Fresh Air", Rev. Richard Cizik "dared" to speak in favor of a number of new ideas for evangelicals to consider, including civil unions for same-sex couples and reasoned considerations of climate change.  So obviously the religious right, being the understanding and diverse crew that they are, proceeded to thank Cizik for encouraging them to think outside of their usual box and question the civil discrimination that they've foisted upon others.  In fact they feted him for encouraging peace and gave him a big fat raise.

Nah, just kidding.  They canned his behind.  Put him right out on his keister.  Gave him the boot. Pink slip.  Simply because he encouraged a different kind of thought.  Because that's the way our opposition rolls: In lock-step or else!

Yesterday Cizik came back to NPR to talk about life post-"culture war."  Listen in:

 

On how evangelicalism has changed

"It became perceived by millions and millions of Americans as captive to a conservative ideology. Not captive to Jesus or to the Gospel but captive to an ideology that has departed, in so many ways, from historic evangelicalism. The movement has always been a reactionary movement. It was born out of reaction to the 19th century biblical criticism in biology in which evangelicals reacted to that and moved away. The new evangelicals of the 20th century saw the fallacy of that kind of approach towards society but after a number of decades, that kind of neo-evangelicalism that was founded by the National Association of Evangelicals -- well it's fallen back into the same kind of subservience to reactionary-ism. Evangelicalism is [seen] today by what it's against, not what it's for. And we're trying to say, we're for these things. And among those is this command to first and foremost follow Jesus -- not the Republican Party or Rush Limbaugh or anyone else, but to follow what the Gospel says."

Ousted Evangelical Reflects On Faith, Future [WBUR]

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