This came from http://www.internetmonk.com/archive/best-quote-ever. I frequently look at this site and like the tagline ‘dispatches from the post evangelical wilderness’. It is a place where I am, but this site, from an American context is a beacon of sanity.
Originally he headed this long quote ‘The best quote ever’. I am not sure I agree with that, but it is a welcome voice of sanity from the voices that bray ‘the Gospel is under attack’.
I love the description of a certain section of the evangelical movement running around like a flock of Chicken Littles. I love it as I guess I am still (just) part of that movement.
‘It is notable that on only two recorded occasions did Paul go so far as to make the claim that the gospel itself was at stake in a given controversy. The first in his letter to the Galatians and the issue on the table is whether or not Gentile converts needed to keep the Jewish Torah and the males among them become Jewish proselytes by having themselves circumcised.
…The other issue on which Paul is willing to stake everything is Jesus’ bodily resurrection. In 1 Corinthians 15 he tells them, “And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain” (v. 14) and “And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.” (v. 17) In other words, the gospel itself is at stake here. The resurrection of Christ is “a matter of first importance” (en protois–v. 3) and an article upon which all else hangs.
…I am always amazed at how quick we often are to sound the “The Gospel is at Stake” alarm. We evangelicals sometimes act like a flock of Chicken Littles, running around like we’ve lost our heads squawking, “The sky is falling! The sky is falling! The gospel’s at stake! The sky is falling!” at even the slightest rattling of our little hen-house of a subculture. We could save ourselves a lot of grief by remembering the centrality and priority of the resurrection and by putting everything else in (that) perspective.
…So ask yourself: If it turned out that Jesus is risen but Darwin was right about human origins after all, would you give up your faith? If it turned out that Jesus was risen but Protestantism was wrong and Catholicism or Orthodoxy was right (or the other way around), would you opt to become an atheist? If it turned out that Jesus is risen and that the New Perspective is more right than wrong about Paul, would that be grounds to abandon Christianity altogether? If it turned out that Jesus is risen but the doctrine of predestination is true (or false!), would you see no more point in following Christ? If it turned out that Jesus is risen but Genesis 1-11 is ancient Near Eastern mythology, would you apostasy? If it turned out that Jesus is risen but Mark and Luke made historical slips here and there and Jonah was actually a non-historical children’s story, would your faith be in vain?
Here’s the kicker: If you answered “yes” to any of those questions, not only are you needlessly worrying yourself over secondary matters, you may have adopted “another gospel.”’