Good news for rationally-minded religious folk and nonbelievers alike: young evangelicals increasingly care less and less about abstinence, abortion, and same-sex marriage. Which is to say: they're more interested in, as one expert told Buzzfeed's Anna North, "outward expressions of the faith" than purity balls and Prop 8.
Some inspiring quotes:
Ken Wilson, senior pastor of the Vineyard Church in Ann Arbor, Michigan, argues, "The culture war stuff just does not appeal to younger generations." Many are children of divorce, he says, and they've tired of conflict: "They're not interested in a spirituality that helps them become culture warriors. They want to repair the culture."
…when young evangelicals talk about "life issues," they don't just mean abortion, says [Jonathan Merritt, author of A Faith of Our Own: Following Jesus Beyond the Culture Wars,] - "They're talking about an ethic of life from the womb to the tomb. They care about issues like war, poverty, the global water crisis, environmental degradation."
Of course, there are still scores of young evangelicals who wouldn't be out of place in Jesus Camp. But these experts and studies give us hope that, as Merritt said, future generations of self-described evangelicals will see the world "through the lens of biblical theology rather than through the lens of conservative politics."
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