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The Modern Evangelical’s Invisible Foundation

by randy on March 9th, 2010

Modern evangelicals accuse Reformed Christians of following men.  Ask any modern evangelical and they will tell you that their Christianity is built on nothing but the Bible alone.  It is, however, their ignorance of the history of American evangelicalism that creates this false sense of independence.  It can be easily pointed out that their faith stands on the invisible foundation of America’s 19th century sectarians.  While they do read their Bible, they do not read it alone.  They read through the hidden lens of men like Darby, Scofield, Finney, Wesley and others who have in recent days come up with novel ideas in their interpretation of scripture, eschatology, soteriology, pneumatology and more.  These views, passed down via oral tradition and modern Christian culture serve as an invisible filter to every Christian who thinks they stand alone.

The Christian who holds to the historic faith recognizes that he stands on the shoulders of giants.  He boasts that God is sovereign over history, and that history has helped to shape the church.  He does not claim that he or his church have arrived at their own interpretation of scripture without the aid of those in the past.  Instead he rejoices that his rich faith is the result of the doctrinal battles fought by men throughout history.  He can identify with men such as Augustine, Luther, John Calvin, Francis Turretin, John Owen, Charles Spurgeon, Johnathan Edwards, the puritans and more…  It is the faith that is aware of its historic context and unstated assumptions that is better equipped to distinguish between truth and error.

Find me a Church or Christian that boasts in her non-denominational status and I will show you a Church and a Christian who is ignorant of her invisible foundation!

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