What is the Difference Between Fundamentalism and New Evangelicalism?
BETWEEN FUNDAMENTALISM AND THE NEW EVANGELICALISM?
The Fundamentalist maintains and defends the historic Christian faith. The "New Evangelical" seeks an accommodation and adjustment of that faith with present-day liberalism or Modernism.
The Fundamentalist continues to be what he has always been, and he places loyalty to the Word of God and the whole counsel of God above every consideration. The New Evangelical is a new name given to an old position, the position of compromise and expediency which has always attended the conflict between the Fundamentalist and the Modernist in its various stages.
The Fundamentalist maintains that there is no middle ground in the battle with apostasy, that obedience is the course demanded of the Bible believer. The New Evangelical speaks in what he calls the realm of "the gray," and he cooperates and fellowships with the Modernist. He refuses to co-operate with the Fundamentalist.
The two groups differ - first, in their loyalty to and evaluation of the fundamental doctrines of the Christian faith; and, second, in their concept of the nature of the church. The 'Fundamentalist defends and maintains both the purity of the Gospel and the purity of the Church. His whole fight has been to preserve a witness faithful to the Gospel. The Fundamentalist believes that if an angel from Heaven preaches any other gospel, -he should be anathema, as the Scripture teaches. The New Evangelical believes in cooperating with the "angels from Heaven," and engaging them in "the dialogue."
The New Evangelical justifies and accepts the concept of the inclusive church and is willing to work with the Ecumenical Movement. The Fundamentalist repudiates the Ecumenical Movement and calls for a 20th Century Reformation.
The Fundamentalist believes that evangelism must build true, consistent, Bible-believing churches. The New Evangelical calls his evangelistic activity "ecumenical evangelism" and he joins hands with Modernists-in joint sponsorship of evangelistic programs. The New Evangelical does not honor the Scriptural demands for the purity of the church, and consents to loose and vague interpretations of the ordination vows. The Fundamentalist preaches the whole counsel of God. The New Evangelical evades it.
The New Evangelical devotes more of his time to attacking the Fundamentalist than he does the Modernist. Much of his criticism reflects his embarrassment at the success of the 'Fundamentalist movement. The Fundamentalist in his witness to Christ exposes the Modernist and the compromise of the New Evangelical.
The Fundamentalist movement honors true Christian scholarship and believes that all such scholarship must be used to defend the historic Christian faith. The New Evangelicalism commends scholarship on the basis of the recognition which it receives from Modernist scholars. It disdains Fundamentalist scholars and attaches a spiritual pride and accomplishment to its accepted circles of scholarship.
The Fundamentalist accepts the Creation accounts of Genesis. The Now Evangelicals vary, but some accept "theistic evolution."
The Fundamentalist believes that God's work is to be done forthrightly and openly, and not in the dark or under a bushel. The New Evangelical advocates that the methods of Communists be followed in infiltrating Modernist churches.
The strategy of the Fundamentalists is patterned after the example of the apostles in their witness to the synagogues and their call for separation from all false and pagan religions.
The Fundamentalist follows a position of obedience; the New Evangelical of experience. One is the strategy of light and of Christ; the other of darkness, compromise, and the Devil.
The 'Fundamentalist calls for separation from and repudiation of the World Council of Churches and the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. The New Evangelical denounces the Fundamentalists as "Pharisees and hypocrites" and instructs the people of God to remain inside of the Ecumenical Movement.
The Now Evangelicalism is represented in the organization known as the National Association of Evangelicals. Fundamentalism today is represented in the American Council of Christian Churches. The NAE was organized following the American Council's organization in 1941 by those who refused to take the militant uncompromising stand of the ACCC.
The Fundamentalist-Modernist controversy continues in the Christian world, with the 'Fundamentalist seeking to honor the great demands of the Scriptures-to preserve the Christian faith and churches, loyal to Christ. The Fundamentalists have the open, bitter opposition of the Ecumenical Movement and its leaders, The New Evangelicals have the commendation and praise of these same leaders in the Ecumenical Movement.
The Fundamentalists count their success in the faithfulness of God. The movement is growing and is stronger today than ever before. The New Evangelicals claim Fundamentalism has failed. They misrepresent the Fundamentalists in their criticism as justification for their softer approach and middle position.
The Fundamentalist movement has developed the International Council of Christian Churches, with 64 evangelical denominations and associations of churches throughout the world uniting in a spiritual fellowship to bear witness to the doctrines of the historic Christian faith. The position of the New Evangelicals was seen in earlier years in the "Modernist-Indifferentist" coalition, with the New Evangelicals maintaining the indifferentist, compromise position, that joined hands against the Fundamentalists who fought within the denominations. Now that the separatist movement has developed under the leadership of the Fundamentalists, the New. Evangelicals still maintain their old allegiance and position in regard to the apostasy, the Modernist denominations, and the developing Ecumenical Movement. The Fundamentalist position is the one that all true Bible believers should seek to honor and maintain because it is Biblical.
20th Century Reformation Hour,
Rev. Carl McIntire, Director
Collingswood, New Jersey