Monday, June 08, 2020

The Chicago Declaration of 1973

Signatories include names you might recognise, like Ron Sider, Lewis Smedes, Jim Wallis.  Though if you have not been following the general movement that considers itself focused on social justice the last fifty years, even those names may not mean much to you.

I should let it speak for itself, but I will give you the hint that it connects very strongly to my recent link to CS Lewis's The Dangers of National Repentance.  In the 1973 Chicago Declaration of Evangelical Social Concern, they spend their time confessing other people's sins.  It's pretty clear they don't mean themselves.  They are decent enough people, and usually have lived exemplary Christian lives.  But they don't see what they are saying here.  (Sider did later admit that he didn't know much economics when he wrote Rich Christians in and Age of Hunger.) 

Contrast this to the courage of the Barmen Declaration as Nazi Germany was getting under weigh.


Sam L. said...

Never before heard of these guys.

james said...

I think I started reading one of Jim Wallis' books once.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Just some background, then. Jim Wallis is/was strongly associated with Sojourners magazine. I have written about his theology and politcs very critically, and do not repent of this. That he wrote a book called God's Politics might give you a hint where he comes from. Even Tony Campolo acknowledged that Wallis is pretty much reflexively liberal without much internal pushback. However, he was extremely kind in crisis to a young friend of ours who worked for him, maybe even preserving life itself. These things matter.