Evangelicalism doesn’t have a brand problem; it has a product problem.
Ok, Evangelicals do have a brand problem—but they also have a major product problem.
By Valerie Tarico | Church and State
Bible-believing born-again Christians, aka Evangelicals, have had a brand problem since Jerry Falwell’s Moral Majority sold the Born-again movement to the Republican party in exchange for political power a generation ago, forging the Religious Right.
The Republican party has been using Christianity’s good name to cover bad deeds ever since, all the while tapping Evangelical media empires and churches as communications and organizing platforms to bring ordinary believers along with the merger. Having become true-believers themselves, Evangelical leaders have offered themselves up as trusted messengers for this New-and-Improved political gospel project.
And it has worked.
Born-again Christians haven’t given up their core beliefs: that the Bible is the literally perfect word of God, Jesus died for their sins, and folks who don’t accept this gift will burn forever in Hell. Rather, most white Evangelicals (and a number of Blacks and Hispanics) have appended parts of the Republican policy agenda and the underlying conceptual framework to this list. Religious beliefs and political beliefs have become, for many Evangelicals, indistinguishable objects of devotion, beyond question. Political tribe and religious tribe now have the same boundaries.