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“New Neutralism”
by John E. Ashbrook   
September 1st, 2007

I believe that the mainspring of new evangelicalism is found in three determinations of its founder which may be clearly traced in the state of things today.

  • First, new evangelicalism determined to reject Biblical separation.
  • Second, new evangelicalism determined to find acceptance by the world.
  • Third, new evangelicalism determined to add the social gospel to the Scriptural gospel.

1. Rejection of Bible Separation

What new evangelicalism has determined to repudiate is Biblical separatism. Separation is God’s prescription for treating the disease of apostasy. It is not ours to repudiate, for it is a divine command, not a human idea.

“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing: and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” 2 Corinthians 6: 17, 18

The same doctrine is taught in passages such as Ephesians 5:11 which says, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.” It is the theme of 2 John, culminating in verses 10 and 11: “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.”

2. Seeking Acceptance by the World

Second, new evangelicalism is determined to find acceptance by the world. I have seen boys and girls feverishly seek the acceptance of their peers. A new child comes to visit, and they rush to show him every toy in the effort to be accepted. (See also Isaiah 39:1-5). This is a note not to be ignored in the new evangelical profile. It shows itself in the desire to be accepted in the world of academia, and it also shows in the desire to make the gospel more palatable to the natural man.

Why should this be a goal for the Christian? Paul spelled out for the believer the vanity of this world’s wisdom in 1 Cor. 1:20, 21; “Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of the world? Hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.”

3. Addition of the Social Gospel

One of Satan’s most effective schemes is to redefine God’s Word and divert Christians from His unchanging Truth to man’s shifting ideals.

For example, God calls us to serve the poor and fills our hearts with love for the needy. That’s why His true followers around the world have willingly given their lives to share His truth and love in perilous places. But today’s world-centred church illustrates a different kind of service. Designed to please man rather than God, it trains its servers to hide the “offensive” truths of the gospel, while moving to meet physical and social needs.

Like Rick Warren, it uses the Bible to validate its purposes but emphasizes organizational behaviour rather than Biblical beliefs – in short, deeds instead of creeds. Behind its noble appearance hides a postmodern version of the century-old “Christian Socialism”.

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