Category: Fundamentalism

Machen and Fundamentalism

J. Gresham Machen (1881-1937) was seen as an ally by the fundamentalists, but he did not accept the term for himself. According to John Piper, Machen’s criticisms of fundamentalism were:-

  1. the absence of historical perspective;
  2. the lack of appreciation of scholarship;
  3. the substitution of brief, skeletal creeds for the historic confessions;
  4. the lack of concern with precise formulation of Christian doctrine;
  5. the pietistic, perfectionist tendencies (i.e., hang ups with smoking, etc.);
  6. one-sided other-worldliness (i.e., a lack of effort to transform culture); and
  7. a penchant for futuristic chiliasm (or: pre-millenialism).

‘Maximal Conservatism’

It occurs to me that theological liberalism reached the height of its influence in the period leading up to 1977.  In fact, Alister McGrath makes a comment to this effect in his biography of J.I. Packer, To Know and Serve God, p212.  In that year two books were published by SCM Press which seemed finally to demonstrate that liberalism was, in the end, an impoverished, negative, destructive influence that was incapable of serving the purpose of Christ in this or any other generation. …

Fundamentalism and evangelicalism

The word ‘fundamentalism’ has gone through several metamorphoses in the course of its 100-year history.  Originally, it attached itself to the sentiments of a set of articles entitled, The Fundamentals: a Testimony to the Truth, which sought to affirm, in the light of ‘attacks’ from liberals and modernists, what were regarded as essential doctrines of the Christian faith.  Latterly, of course, the word has often been used to refer to militant extremists of any religious background. …