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bonar crump
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Monday, March 14, 2011

Love Wins: A New Split in Protestant Evangelicalism

by Jimmy Spencer
Red Letter Christians

Over the past couple years we have seen a growing hostility between conservative and more legalistic traditions of Christianity here in the USA and the more progressive traditions who focus more on loving and serving others. This doesn’t cleanly break across strictly denominational lines either.

Your witnessing something big right now.
Your witnessing a new split in Protestant Evangelicalism.

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You’ll see two sides soon with a fairly slim middle. On one side you’ll have the Reformed Conservatives—entrenching and ‘expelling’ folks. On the other side you will see the Progressive Evangelicals—migrating toward work with mainline churches. This thing is going to split wide open.

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This may be the future of Evangelicalism—and we may all be witnessing the tipping poin.

 [Full Article]


Why Love Rarely Wins (Sorry Rob Bell)

Posted by Christena Cleveland
Recovering Evangelical 

"In my work with churches, I find that most Christians agree that we should unite across ethnic, linguistic and socio-economic lines. Few people have a problem with this idea (at least in theory). However, Christians bristle at the suggestion of unity across theological divisions. Armed with the belief that our perspective is entirely right, we easily come up with reasons why other perspectives aren’t valuable and why dissenting voices should be extinguished."
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1. We hate ambiguity.

"Back in the 1950s, Fritz Heider referred to all humans as naïve psychologists. Whether we are trained in psychology or not, we have a strong need to make sense of this confusing world so that we can exert control in our lives and make informed choices about the future. To this end, we are constantly analyzing situations, trying to predict the behavior of others and pinpoint answers to complex philosophical questions. As a result, we have a strong aversion to ambiguity."
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2. We hate black sheep.

"Social identity researchers have found that ideological distinctions are so crucial to differentiating groups that groups have a special hatred for other group members who for the most part act like normal group members but do not “toe the party line” on one or two issues. This effect is called the black sheep effect and is based on the idea that nongroup members are supposed to disagree with us. As such, we are not as threatened by their disagreement. If anything, their disagreement with us further distinguishes us from them."
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"In theory, our common group membership as Christians should supersede theological distinctions, thus overriding these nasty group processes. However, anyone who spends any time on Twitter knows that this is not yet the case."