Ed Stetzer on Defining Evangelicals and 2016April 11, 2016
Today we have Ed Stetzer, Executive Director of LifeWay Research, on the show with us to discuss defining “Evangelicals” in the 2016 election. Defining “evangelicals” has been a hot topic of debate this election season, often reduced to a voting bloc. But is that all that matters? Who is an evangelical?
Ed recently conducted a two year study on this topic, with Leith Anderson, President of the National Association of Evangelicals. They write in Christianity Today:
As one unsympathetic political activist put it recently to Leith (without knowing he was president of the NAE), “All those evangelicals really scare me.”
But our new definition shows that when we examine them by what they actually believe, American evangelicals are quite diverse.
What are those beliefs? They boil them down to these four core statements:
The Bible is the highest authority for what I believe.
It is very important for me personally to encourage non-Christians to trust Jesus Christ as their Savior.
Jesus Christ’s death on the cross is the only sacrifice that could remove the penalty of my sin.
Only those who trust in Jesus Christ alone as their Savior receive God’s free gift of eternal salvation.
And when this definition is used, they find:
When all is said and done, about 30 percent of all Americans have evangelical beliefs as described by the four questions. Broken out by ethnicity, 29 percent of whites, 44 percent of African Americans, 30 percent of Hispanics, and 17 percent of people from other ethnicities have evangelical beliefs.
Join us for The Reconnect at 3 ET today, to hear right from Ed Stetzer.
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