Evangelicalism in the United States is fracturing along social, political, and ethical fault lines, to the extent that the very meaning of “evangelicalism” is in dispute. Having surrendered its theological character and missional heritage to partisan political activism and cultural conservatism, the movement has lost its unifying identity and undermined its own testimony in an increasingly diverse society.
Mark Young believes a revitalization of the evangelical movement must happen in our seminaries, where the shepherds of the next evangelicalism are being formed. Young argues that if these leaders of tomorrow are instilled with true gospel values, they will go on to form churches and missional organizations that offer a credible and compelling Christlike witness for the sake of the world. The Hope of the Gospel takes readers through the history of evangelicalism and back to the present to make the case for how this can happen through a renewed vision of theological education.
Table of Contents
What Matters 1. The Hope of the Gospel 2. Who Are We? Past Matters 3. The DNA of Evangelicalism 4. The Foundation and Fragmentation of Faith 5. Revive Us Again! 6. The Quest for Credibility Future Matters 7. Bible 8. Cross 9. Conversion 10. Mission Epilogue For Further Thought
Mark S. Young is the president of Denver Seminary, a large evangelical school with students representing over fifty denominations. Prior to coming to Denver he taught at Dallas Theological Seminary and served as founding academic dean of Evangelical Theological Seminary in Wroclaw, Poland.
Interpretation “Mark Young . . . articulates a new vision for evangelicalism.”
“Mark Young, in The Hope of the Gospel, prophetically calls us into that liminal space which honors both the firm, historical theological roots which historically defines evangelicalism and the new contextual realities of a growing, global evangelical movement. Young courageously beckons us to look beyond the boundaries of the North American and European experiences which have shaped our movement to a more robust and biblical vision which promises to reenergize that faith ‘once for all delivered to the saints.’” — Timothy C. Tennent president and professor of world Christianity at Asbury Theological Seminary
“I needed this book. It not only challenged my nostalgia for an evangelicalism that never really was exactly like what I have remembered it to be, but it also gave me new hope for evangelical theological education. Mark Young is enthusiastic about a new generation of theological educators who are willing to face the future with an openness to challenges that can only met by a deep commitment to the Gospel. And he points the way ahead with cultural and cross-cultural savvy—and most of all, with profound theological wisdom.” — Richard J. Mouw president emeritus of Fuller Theological Seminary
“Against those who would give up on the identifier ‘evangelical,’ Mark Young pushes back with a vision of evangelical theological education in which the gospel is at the center. For the five young leaders the book addresses, as well as to all with ears to hear, Young makes good in showing why a return to the gospel opens wide a doorway of hope.” — Mark A. Noll author of Jesus Christ and the Life of the Mind
“The Hope of the Gospel by Mark S. Young invites our next generation of theological educators to carve out a process of transformation within our institutions, a movement of intellectual spiritual renewal he characterizes as ‘orthodoxy on fire.’ Young encourages us to create hope-infused spaces for institutional growth and change beyond the status quo of American evangelicalism and highlights the urgent need to articulate a meaningful public theology. By calling for a renewed vision of theological education, Young challenges us to examine our prevailing values and assumptions to embrace more fully God’s redemptive mission for the church and society. Asking us to recalibrate our historical narratives and inherited frameworks, Young’s book is a highly relevant, insightful, and timely read for current and future generations of theological educators. “ — Karen An-hwei Lee provost and professor of English at Wheaton College
“Mark Young writes as thoughtfully as an evangelical and as insightfully as the president of a leading American seminary. Evangelical theological educators should read this book because it will remind them of the gifts that have distinguished this evangelical movement and point them to the generative work that needs to be undertaken to extend those gifts into the future. Others should read this book because it gives needed clarity to the identity confusion evangelicalism is experiencing and provides valuable insight into the work of evangelical theological schools.” — Daniel O. Aleshire executive director of the Association of Theological Schools from 1998 to 2017
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