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Theological Commission: Pastoral Statement on Fundamentalism

September 27, 2006
WEA Theological Commission

"Promoting Biblical Truth by Networking Theologians"

Annual Meeting Nairobi, Sept 21-23, 2006

The WEA TC held a Mini-Consultation on the topic, Theological Reflection on Religious Fundamentalism as a Global Issue, in which key note papers were delivered by Professor Yusufu Turaki and Dr Rolf Hille, supported by three other papers by Dr Matt Cook, Dr David Parker and Dr Claus Schwambach, with approx. 20 participants. At the conclusion, the following Pastoral Statement was prepared for international circulation.



Pastoral Statement on Fundamentalism

The term “Fundamentalism” is used in popular media to communicate a negative view of certain groups who hold various kinds of radical, political positions toward others including the use of violence and terrorism.

As evangelicals, we respect every human being as created in the image of God. All humans, everywhere, are obliged to protect, to promote, and to defend the dignity and value inherent in this image regardless of the person’s social status, religious background, or ethnic origin.

The teaching and example of Jesus Christ calls us to show love and reconciliation toward all people. We are motivated to show love to those who oppose us and even to those who declare themselves to be our enemies.

Based on the apostolic teaching and experience of the early church, we hold that the gospel cannot be forced on any person by economical, political, or violent pressure. Christians should respect the freedom of conscience of others. Conversion to Christ is always through the power of the Holy Spirit and not through coercive means.

We call on the evangelical community to pray for peace in the world and to work for the reconciliation between the different religious, ethnic, and political groups.

We must be ready to proclaim faithfully, even under suffering or persecution, the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ as Good News to the whole world. Promoting social care, justice, and love for all human beings are integral aspects of this proclamation.

Nairobi,

23 September 2006

Enquiries:

Rev Dr David Parker
Director of Administration and Publications
Editor, Evangelical Review of Theology and Theological News
tc@worldevangelicalalliance.com
http://www.worldevangelicalalliance.com/commissions/theological.htm
17 Disraeli St., Indooroopilly, Queensland, 4068
Tel (+61 7) 3878 3178 Cell 0404 083 108