I continue to hold onto the label ‘evangelical’ even though I know there is a lot of baggage that is accompanied with that. I consider myself to be a moderate, which can be lonely. I’m too conservative for my liberal friends and too liberal for my conservative friends.
It is for this reason that I enjoyed Richard Mouw’s Restless Faith: Holding Evangelical Beliefs in a World of Contested Labels.
Mouw was a long-time president of Fuller Theological Seminary, an institution that has been very influential in the development of American evangelicalism. Mouw has sometimes come under criticism for statements and actions by evangelicals on the more conservative end. This would include his respectful conversations with Latter-day Saints.
Restless Faith is the story of Mouw’s journey as an evangelical, coming from a very conservative background and only gradually learning that there were other options. I wouldn’t agree with everything that Mouw believes but his honesty and integrity are a breath of fresh air.
Mouw demonstrates that there is room to be flexible in our beliefs and practices without it becoming a slippery slope into liberalism. It is possible to embrace evangelical core values and yet evolve in our interpretation of certain issues.
As someone who has changed position on a number of theological topics, I really appreciated Restless Faith. You can benefit from reading this book without embracing every position he takes.