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USA: Christian Evangelicals After Trump, Will Christians Be 'Still Evangelical?' - by Emmna Green

Under President Trump, the word “evangelical” has been tossed around a lot, used interchangeably with other broad terms like “conservative Christians” and “the religious right.” Evangelicals are portrayed as cohesive, all-powerful, and monolithic; they are almost always discussed in the context of politics, and the unspoken assumption is that they are white. This is a regrettable failure of description, since it does not remotely cohere to reality. But more importantly, this way of talking about evangelicals papers over significant disagreements among those who claim the label—fractures that will fundamentally shift how evangelicalism is perceived and expressed in the coming years.

Still Evangelical?, a new book from InterVarsity Press, captures the way a certain segment of Christian leaders are thinking about this moment of evangelical identity crisis. All of the writers hold prominent positions in the worlds of ministry, seminaries, and religious advocacy, but none are household names outside of the Christian world. This is part of the point: Many highly respected evangelicals with significant influence are basically ignored by the mainstream press, creating a skewed view of what evangelicalism is.

Yet this group is also arguably at odds with many Americans who call themselves evangelicals. They write from elite perches. Many are unabashedly progressive, and at least one is a female executive pastor of a church—a controversial role for women in some evangelical denominations. Although some are bona fide conservatives, none seems to be a full-throated Trump supporter. For the most part, these are Christians who feel disoriented by their brothers and sisters who supported Trump in the election. That fact alone means they sit in the minority.

The statistic that 81 percent of the white evangelicals who voted chose Trump has been cited constantly over the last year and a half. All jokes about conservative Christians supporting a thrice-married, foul-mouthed casino owner have become canned. Non-Christians weren’t the only people who were shocked. “Most evangelical Christians like me exclaimed, ‘Who are these people?’” wrote Mark Galli, the editor in chief of Christianity Today, in his essay. “‘I know hardly anyone, let alone any evangelical Christian[s], who voted for Trump.’”

 Read more: After Trump, Will Christians Be 'Still Evangelical?' - The Atlantic

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