We Must Meet the Challenge of Our Times

Albert Mohler | January 6, 2016

Editors’ note: This excerpt is adapted from The Gospel Coalition eBook Revisiting ‘Faithful Presence’: To Change the World Five Years Later, edited by Collin Hansen. Download the book for free in ePub, MOBI, or PDF files.


I first began reading James Davison Hunter back in the early 1980s when I was a seminary student. He had just published his first major work, American Evangelicalism: Conservative Religion and the Quandary of Modernity. I was at a crucial stage in my own theological and intellectual understanding of both Christianity’s place in the modern age and of evangelicalism as a movement and a theological identity.

My Debt to Hunter

More than anything else, Hunter’s argument concerning theological accommodation and the fragility of evangelical identity under the conditions of modernity caught my attention. His concept of “cognitive bargaining” became an important factor in my analysis of what was then a raging controversy within the Southern Baptist Convention. The controversy centered around theological identity—something that was then (and now) an ongoing struggle for American evangelicals. I was immediately able to see…

To read the rest of this article, visit http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/we-must-meet-the-challenge-of-our-times.