I'm an Evangelical Ecumenist? What Does That Even Mean?

Working with other believers on common issues


I consider myself an Evangelical ecumenist. Big ‘E’ for Evangelical, little ‘e’ for ecumenist, because I don’t follow the classic approach to ecumenism.

To put it another way, I don’t believe in searching for the lowest common theological denominator in a general statement like “Jesus is Lord.” Actually, Jesus is much more than that. For example, he is “the Son of God,” “the One born of a virgin,” he suffered, died, was buried, and rose again, ascended into heaven, and is coming to judge the living and dead. He is the head of the church, which has pastor/elders and deacons, calls people into covenant membership, and baptizes believers.

That’s too specific for many big ‘E’ Ecumenists.

But I am more of an ecumenist than are many Evangelicals. I’ve spoken at the national meetings of 50 different denominations and I train pastors, evangelists, lay leaders, professionals, and church planters from all different denominations.

Some don’t like my ecumenism. I was actually accused by one leader in my denomination of being an “Evangelical Ecumenist.” He explained I was “the most dangerous person” in the denomination because I was, well, an Evangelical ecumenist.

I like that.

I mean, the part about being dangerous.

Because that’s the kind of danger that Jesus calls us to— acting like the body of Christ.

When Together Is Better

What my ecumenism means is that I avoid saying that all Christians are the same and believe the same— and I believe they can still have the gospel. Yet, I work with others (even more broadly) on common issues, such as the sanctity of life and issues of justice.

What do the Anglican ...

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