“As important as those things might be to discuss, that’s not the central message of what it means to be an evangelical,” he said. “Historically speaking, evangelicals were good news specialists and because we’ve become so closely aligned with political ideologies and culture warring issues, what’s been lost is the core good news message of the Christian faith.”
While Tchividjian, who also noted that the word “evangel” means “good news,” said he’s not sure what can be done to fix the perception problem, he believes pastors need to stick to their calling if they want to undo “the damage that has been done to the brand of evangelicalism” — that is, preaching the Christian gospel.
He has recommended in the past that pastors consider spending the next five years refusing to talk from the pulpit about anything other than the Bible. He said it’s not that pastors can’t have opinions, but he highlighted the importance of compartmentalizing and being careful how ideas are shared.
“I have lots of opinions … on just about anything. I basically almost refuse to make any kind of public commentary on anything other than the gospel [from the pulpit],” Tchividjian said, adding that it is a pastor’s job to “diagnose and deliver sinners, not champion a political or social agenda.”
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