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Russell Moore (PhD, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary) is the eighth president of the Ethics Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. A widely sought-after commentator, Dr. Moore has been called "vigorous, cheerful, and fiercely articulate" by The Wall Street Journal. vis mere He is the author of several books, including The Kingdom of Christ, Tempted and Tried, and Onward. He and his wife, Maria, have five children. vis mindre
Image credit: Dr. Moore preaching in chapel at SBTS. By Theology147 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=22498114

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Værker af Russell Moore

A Guide to Adoption and Orphan Care (2012) 112 eksemplarer
This Is Camino (2015) 40 eksemplarer
Same Sex Marriage and the Future (2014) 17 eksemplarer
Plough Quarterly No. 6: Witness (2015) 2 eksemplarer

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Russell Moore is the executive editor of the magazine Christianity Today, a minister, and was in a leadership role in the Southern Baptist Convention until he was pressured into leaving as a result of his refusal to endorse Donald Trump and his unwillingness to sweep under the rug the numerous allegations of sexual abuse within the Southern Baptists. Although he maintained his beliefs he said that he was losing his religion. This book explains what he means when he says Evangelists are losing their religion and explains why many people are leaving a church that seems to have turned its back on things that had made it Christian. His key message is that "only when something is lost can it be found."

His prose style is like drinking from a fire hose with extremely dense paragraphs. Those paragraphs have so many things worth noting that my Kindle copy now is filled with highlights. The book is not only valuable for Evangelists or Baptists, it is valuable for any church goer in America. Also, many of its lessons can be applied to non-religious situations as well.

The book is divided into sections describing what is being lost and why. The end of each section includes suggestions for compensating for these loses.

Losing our Credibility. The section begins with a reference to the R.E.M. song "Losing My Religion" that had been posted by a woman who said that she was not losing her faith but was afraid she was losing her church and did not believe that her church believed what her church had taught her.

Losing our Authority. This section talks about tribalism and includes statements like "we are called not just to argue about what is true, but to say things we know to be false, just to prove that we are part of the tribe to which we belong." He continues saying that "What a movement rooted in power instead of truth actually wants are people who are willing to accept seemingly crazy ideas .... and to change them at a moments notice." He then emphasizes the "the evangelical culture of the past half century has focused comparatively little on judgement for the hearer, and much more on a different kind of fear - the imminent threat from one's neighbors or culture."

Losing our Identity. This section is focused on culture war issues that consume the evangelical community at the expense of the more religious issues. He sees a worldwide trend evolving towards a "post-Christian right" where culture war issues supplant the religious ones with religious symbols used for "shoring up an ethnic or national identity."

Losing Our Integrity. In 2016, the author had published comments saying that "Trump was morally unfit for leadership." These comments resulted in furious responses from people who were willing toss aside moral judgements in order to support a member of the tribe. He later realized that this willingness to excuse moral failings started long before the 2016 election and could be found in the willingness of so many church leaders to excuse moral failings of all types in their leaders.

Losing our Stability. This section discusses the ideas of revival versus reformation to reset the moral compass of the church. He concludes by saying that American Christianity is in crises. The church is a scandal in all the worst ways. We bear responsibility for that." concluding that we need to "Make Evangelism Born Again."
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M_Clark | 2 andre anmeldelser | Nov 19, 2023 |
Summary: A call to repentance, to come to Jesus, for an evangelical church that has lost its credibility, authority, identity, integrity, and stability.

“The problem now is not that people think the church’s way of life is too demanding, too morally rigourous, but that they have come to think the church doesn’t believe its own moral teachings.”

RUSSELL MOORE, P. 44.

Russell Moore has experienced first hand shattering disillusionment with a church that no longer seems to believe its own message. He was at one time the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) of the Southern Baptist Convention. He is a popular author and has spoken trenchantly on the moral issues of the day, grounded in his belief in the authority of the Bible. That all changed when, seeing the immoral behavior of our former president in his candidacy, he refused to endorse him. Added to that, when an investigative report uncovered hundreds of cases of sexual abuse in his denomination, he advocated for the survivors of abuse when denominational leaders were stonewalling the issue. For the first offense, there was a popular backlash that included withholding of contributions. For the second, he was called on the carpet for being divisive and jeopardizing the support of church mission programs. He was attacked and demonized. At the end of his term as president of the ERLC, he resigned and joined a nondenominational congregation, leaving the body he had been a part of since he first walked down the aisle in response to an altar call.

Moore has wrestled with the parlous state of an American evangelicalism being abandoned by those who no longer think the church believes its own message, that has embraced political rather than spiritual power, that has justified the immoral for the end of “winning” a culture war, that has jettisoned a belief in truth, and turned to a nostalgic wish to return to some unspecified past greatness rather than to trust and walk with Christ into his future for his people. He sees the crumbling of such a “religion” to be a good thing. We ought to lose such a religion. Moore recurs to the practice of the altar call, a time of decision and turning from all these illusions and returning to our first love for Christ who alone can save us.

In five chapters, Moore outlines what he sees evangelicalism has lost. There is lost credibility, the growing gap between professed belief and actual behavior. There is lost authority as churches have embraced the tribal narratives of different political groups rather the truths they profess together in the creeds. There is a loss of identity in the embrace of a Christian nationalism of blood and soil rather than the multiethnic pilgrim exile community who follow Jesus. There is a loss of integrity in the acceptance of moral compromise to “win” battles–a far cry from Christian faithfulness that prioritizes trusting obedience over “results.” And we have lost the stability of nostalgia that fails to face the traumas we have endured in the recent past, where we end up repeating what has not been repaired.

Each chapter not only addresses the losses both of our failings and our crumbling illusions. Moore addresses how the faithful live when the ruins are falling. He urges us to embrace rather than resist disillusionment, to face rather than deny judgment. He calls us to tell the truth and avoid foolish controversies. A telling challenge for me was that he urges us to not “self-censor.” Most of extremist lies come from a very small but vigorous group who persuade truthtellers to go to ground. He urges us to refuse secularization and false framings of warfare that target people rather than spiritual powers. He urges the cultivation of intergenerational community. He challenges “whataboutism” that justifies immoral acts by the immorality of the “other” side, calling us to long-term integrity rather than short-term success. He movingly describes his growing friendship with Beth Moore, of whom he once spoke critically as he urges us to new communities and friendships with those whose gospel faithfulness transcends other differences.

As he concludes, he speaks of revival in very different terms. A reviving of American moral and religious greatness might actually be a bad thing without repentance and the hard work of the deep healing of our spiritual woundedness. Nostalgia seems so much safer and yet this is like going back to slavery in Egypt rather than following God in the uncertainties of the wilderness. His final words recur to his title: “Maybe only when we lose our religion will we be, once again, amazed by grace.”

This is both a hard and hopeful book. Moore unflinchingly names the failures of evangelicalism. He doesn’t offer any glowing promises but simply, for those who will hear, a call to press through our disillusionment to repentance, through our cynicism to belief in Christ, through our culture warring divisions to engaging local communities, and through the fog of a post-truth and post-morality world to integrity of belief and behavior. There are no promises here that these things will save evangelicalism or America. Rather, the only hope offered is that come what may, we will be saved, along with those drawn by gospel faithfulness. That is the hope we all find at the altar.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the publisher.
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Markeret
BobonBooks | 2 andre anmeldelser | Sep 28, 2023 |
Russell Moore, no relation to Beth Moore, has written a wonderful, thought provoking book about how the evangelical church in America has lost its focus on Christ and instead given itself over to the lust for power, fame and political influence.

I believe that's why the subtitle is “An Alter Call for Evangelical America”.

While many in the evangelical movement are willing to side step questions about character and the notion "the ends justify the means" seems to prevail, Moore helps us understand we cannot and should not leave the cross of Jesus and his teachings behind.

Moore also provides wisdom to help us all back to the basics…. His thoughtful suggestions are timely and extremely valuable.
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Markeret
KellyHouske | 2 andre anmeldelser | Sep 28, 2023 |
A clear call to keep the gospel but to watch for how the culture (any culture) can distort or pervert the gospel. Both sides of the aisle are not free from correction.
 
Markeret
Brian.Christensen | 1 anden anmeldelse | May 30, 2020 |

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