Australian Evangelical Alliance: Faith and Community 1-09 (February 2009) – the bulletin of EA’s Public Theology Work

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Welcome to the February 2009 issue of Faith and Community, the bulletin of EA’s public theology work. In this issue, in accord with the favourable response we received from the last edition, we have solicited some Australian responses to events and documents over the past year.

Motivated by the strange, publicised ’prophecies’ of Danny Nalliah at the last federal election, we asked four Australians to muse on the theme ‘prophecy and politics’. I have to admit, I had second thoughts about whether to raise this issue, but with another round of spurious comments in the public domain leading up to the U.S. Presidential elections, and then the recent outrageous comments regarding God’s apparent removal of “conditional protection” from Victoria, it seemed appropriate to present these critical and constructive thoughts.

Last year, many Evangelicals in America tired of being automatically associated with the ‘religious right’ in media and popular consciousness and, under the guiding hand of Os Guinness, produced the Evangelical Manifesto. The manifesto spoke to both Evangelical identity and political engagement and was commented on briefly in the U.S. media and for a somewhat longer time in the Christian ‘blogosphere’. Most of that commentary and critique was North American; so we have asked a few Evangelicals closer to home to give their views.

Our next issue will include reflections on ‘providence in public’ (thinking about God’s activity or ostensible absence during tragedy) and ‘one year under Rudd’. If you would like to contribute, please contact me at [email protected] to discuss further. Lastly, I hope that even in the midst of economic crisis (and the desperate needs of catastrophes close to home), you won’t forget to renew your EA ‘membership’ as an individual EA partner or as an affiliated organisation or church. Please contact me or our office on (03) 9890 0633.

Grace and peace

Ian Packer
Director of Public Theology
Australian Evangelical Alliance