“Big Tent” Versus “Small Tent” Evangelicalism
Comparing the “Big Tent” with the “Small Tent” Evangelicalism The 6th of October, 2014 Roger E. Olson is an American businessman and author. The progressive dissolution of the evangelical movement in the United States is something that I find quite upsetting. As for the source of my dissatisfaction, I can pinpoint it to what I refer to as “little tent evangelicals,” who engage in tribalism and totalizing thinking when it comes to determining who counts as “authentically evangelical.” The things I recall from elementary/primary school, which was a very long time ago, are hazy at the best of times.
At this point, it doesn’t matter who wrote it because I don’t remember who wrote it.
The poem is as follows: “He put a circle around me, declaring me a heretic, a rebel, and somebody to be despised.
I’ll never forget the feeling of awe I had when I finished reading Harold Lindsell’s explosive book The Battle for the Bible (1976).
He reacted to Lindsell’s work by asserting that inerrancy is not what it appears to be, despite the fact that he passionately believed in inerrancy.
I grew up in a highly evangelical church and denomination–charter members of the National Association of Evangelicals–that did not use the language of “biblical inerrancy.” I was raised in a very evangelical church and denomination that did not use the language of “biblical inerrancy.” Lindsell asserted that confidence in the inerrancy of Scripture is crucial to the Christian identity.
I was shocked!
Over the following years, I came to the conclusion, which I still hold, that most of evangelicalism’s fragmentation has not been caused by genuine theological differences, but rather by tribalism.
People who do not pronounce “Shibboleth” correctly are referred to be the “enemy” (false evangelicals).
In the end, after we agreed that we probably believed the same thing about biblical accuracy (given all the qualifications he added to the term “biblical inerrancy”), I asked him if I could join the ETS, despite the fact that I do not believe “inerrancy” is an intellectually honest word to describe what we both believe.
- That has just verified to me that “inerrancy” has devolved into little more than a tribal euphemism to keep people out who are thought unworthy to be members of the tribe in question.
- How many Calvinists were in agreement?
- Instead, I’ve heard that Calvinist leaders are still distorting Arminianism and referring to it as Pelagian or semi-Pelagian in their descriptions of it.
- Fundamentalism in a little tent.
I believe that this worldview, as well as the exclusionary rhetoric and actions that accompany it, contributes to “neo-fundamentalism.” Unfortunately, it is catching on to the point that totalizers and exclusivists are seizing control of the term “evangelical” to call themselves “evangelical.” These individuals have exerted immense pressure on “big tent” evangelical publishers and academics to accommodate them–in particular, to refrain from publishing articles and books written by those who do not pronounce Shibboleth correctly.
- Fortunately, the majority of the aforementioned publishers and instructors have not folded in to their demands–at least not yet.
- He spoke directly to it and counseled moderate to progressive evangelicals to “hunker down” until the storm passed through their area of influence.
- My evangelicalism is the same as that of the founders of the evangelical movement that emerged after World War II.
- NAE and similar groups that brought together nonfundamentalist and postfundamentalist evangelicals in a “big tent” coalition based around the gospel represented evangelicalism in my formative years, and I long for that evangelicalism to come again.
- The “Word Made Fresh” statement (2001), which I recently put on my blog, was our (moderate evangelicals’) attempt to summon all evangelicals back to “large tent” evangelicalism by calling all evangelicals to “big tent” evangelicalism.
More than 100 evangelical leaders and intellectuals wrote and signed the document, which is just as relevant now as when it was first published.
The Big Tent
Many conservatives were turned off by such actions. “Dr. Graham has stated categorically that he will not hold a meeting anywhere, North or South, where the colored people and the white people would be segregated in the auditorium,” Bob Jones stated, “and I do not believe that the good Christian colored people and the good Christian white people will want to set aside an old established social and religious custom anytime in the foreseeable future.” Since then, Graham has been on a long, inexorable march to the center, from which he has never returned, and over the years, he has gradually softened his positions, even on issues that are central to his religious beliefs.
- In 1949, after a period of self-doubt, he ran for mayor of Los Angeles and came to the conclusion that Hell was not necessarily a bottomless pit of fire and brimstone, but rather the perpetual punishment of “separation from God.” He was elected mayor of Los Angeles in 1950.
- Dogmatic fundamentalism had been relegated to the sidelines, and with the emergence of international terrorism and the subsequent cultural wars, the entire concept of fundamentalism became odious.
- The term “fundamentalism” no longer defines us as loyal Bible believers; instead, it now bears connotations of extremism and terrorism, according to the author of the article.
- We who are alienated from Christ believe that it is necessary to create a new title that would describe us more positively and correctly.” Jones’s proposal was to use the term “preservationist,” which has so far failed to gain widespread acceptance.
- Despite the fact that overall church membership in the United States has increased by more than one-third since 1960, the mainstream churches have seen their membership decline by twenty-one percent since 1960.
- New York’s First Presbyterian Church continues to serve in the liberal tradition of Harry Emerson Fosdick, but an evangelical church called Redeemer Presbyterian has emerged as the most important Presbyterian congregation in the city.
- As a ministry for evangelical city workers, Redeemer Presbyterian was founded by Timothy Keller, a graduate of Machen’s Westminster Seminary.
In addition to more than a score of “plant” churches in the city and elsewhere, the church has spun off a number of congregations, including the evangelical Emmanuel Church, which holds its weekly services in the James Chapel of the Union Theological Seminary, which was formerly presided over by Reinhold Niebuhr and now serves the greater New York City area.
According to Greg Laurie, senior pastor of the megachurch Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California, and a member of the Graham association board of directors, “I think it put a kind face on what was perceived to be fundamentalism.” Inspiring, interesting, and with a strong cultural link, it was a hit with the audience.” The vital Gospel message and biblical emphasis were not jeopardized, however, during this process.
- It is instructive that Dr.
- A former Black Muslim, Bernard began his ministry with a storefront church that has developed into a megachurch the size of Texas (with with a cafeteria, fish ponds, and gardens) that draws more than 20,000 worshippers each week.
- It is our belief that we may be a prophetic voice in that society by studying that culture and adapting to it while being true to our beliefs.
- Just a few weeks before the crusade, Dr.
- “We have received several complaints,” Butts said.
Butts told me, “I feel he has every right to come to New York and preach the Gospel—we do have religious freedom in this nation.” “Having said that, I personally feel that he has served as an apologist for political right-wingers throughout his professional life.” Despite the fact that Graham eventually evolved to avoid making political statements, his early political inclination resembled the conservatism of his home region.
Because of Graham’s close relationship with Richard Nixon, he has suffered a tarnish on his image, not least because of recorded transcripts of a White House conversation in which Graham denigrated Jews (for which he has apologized, often and abjectly, offering to crawl on his knees for forgiveness).
- The first President with whom Graham had come into contact, Harry Truman, ignored him during a 1952 crusade in Washington, rejecting him as “just another religious charlatan,” prompting Graham to implore him (in vain) with seductive pleadings to reconsider.
- While in Palm Beach, he met up with President-elect Jack Kennedy and former President Gerald Ford in Palm Springs.
- For politicians, affiliation with Graham resulted in a very specific type of public approbation, as well as the private consolation provided during difficult times, such as those experienced by Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, among others.
- He rose to prominence as a symbol of Protestant Christianity in America, thus establishing evangelicalism as the majority religion in the United States.
- When Graham and Bush’s prodigal son, George W.
- In a subsequent letter, Bush added, “Billy Graham didn’t make you feel bad.” “He made you feel adored,” she says.
While growing up, William Franklin Graham III was likewise a devout heller, the epitome of “preacher’s kid” syndrome, which was heightened by the fact that his father was not just any preacher but the founder of the Graham Organization.
(His father allowed the police to enter, and Franklin was told that he would be sent to jail if he did it again.) He had a desire to fly and obtained a pilot’s license, but he was killed when a plane he was piloting made an ill-advised landing.
In the end, you’ll have to make a decision: whether to embrace or reject what Jesus Christ accomplished on the Cross of Calvary.
Franklin, you’re going to have to make a choice soon enough.
Within a few weeks that summer, Franklin had completed his associate’s degree at a local two-year college, married his high school love, Jane Austin Cunningham, and enrolled in a Bible college in Colorado to further his education.
While his new life became a source of constant conflict after that, a year later, in the summer of 1975, he and his wife were living with his parents and the only employment he could find was assisting his father in his crusades.
Pierce had been a contemporary of Billy’s at the outset of the war, another young preacher in the Youth for Christ organization during the conflict.
(Templeton later left the government and returned to Canada, where he pursued a career in journalism, eventually rising to the position of managing editor of the TorontoStar.) Despite the fact that Pierce showed up at the Youth for Christ Chicago headquarters one day in a deep depression, resolved to leave the pulpit, he was moved to the West Coast and finally to Asia, where he discovered his purpose.
- The social disarray, poverty, and human misery that Pierce experienced in China were of a magnitude he could hardly comprehend; but, there was also a strong spiritual hunger within all of the filth, and the combined impact was oddly exciting for Pierce.
- Pierce immediately handed over all of the money he had in his pocket and promised that he would personally see to it that the child’s education was fully funded.
- When the Maoist victory resulted in the expulsion of Christian preachers in 1949, Pierce relocated to other locations and experienced new exhilarations.
- While traveling back to his hometown, he visited churches and Christian groups, playing films depicting the remote pains he’d promised to alleviate, with a starving youngster as the prominent focus practically every time.
- With a kind of reckless enthusiasm, Pierce was pushed in his purpose, begging for the capacity to directly experience God’s own anguish for his most wounded people, to take on their suffering—and then betting that God would somehow make good on Bob Pierce’s promises to them.
- Known for his outbursts of anger, which were quickly followed by remorse, Pierce’s personality and operating style became increasingly disruptive to the Christian enterprise as World Vision grew.
- His personal life was no less chaotic as his professional life.
He discovered that he had leukemia a couple years after the first diagnosis.
He was well aware that Franklin was freshly married and at a loss for what to do, and in that phone call he urged Franklin to accompany him on an Asian trip that would be unlike any of the international excursions Franklin had had with his father.
Pierce sold Franklin Graham on the tremendous adventure of conducting God’s work on an entrepreneurial level, rather than on a religious level.
Franklin was moved by Pierce’s thrill-ride evangelism, and he took over the running of Samaritan’s Purse shortly after Pierce’s death in 1978.
One of Franklin’s first humanitarian missions led him to a distant missionary hospital in Kenya, where patients were treated two to a bed because the institution was overcrowded.
Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker’s television show “Praise the Lord” featured his tale about the hospital.
In Graham’s mind, Samaritan’s Purse should be unlike any other organization, and certainly separate from a Christian assistance bureaucracy, and his ideals were occasionally unrealistic or misguided in their implementation.
While serving as commander of the American forces in the first Gulf War, he distributed thousands of Bibles to soldiers stationed in Saudi Arabia, an action that enraged the coalition’s commanding general, Norman Schwarzkopf, who said that it threatened to destabilize the fragile alliance.
Big Tent Revival
Many conservatives were offended by such gestures, and they were right. “Dr. Graham has stated categorically that he will not hold a meeting anywhere, North or South, where the colored people and the white people would be segregated in the auditorium,” Bob Jones stated, “and I do not believe that the good Christian colored people and the good Christian white people will want to set aside an old established social and religious custom anytime in the foreseeable future,” Bob Jones added.
- After a long, inexorable march to the middle, from which he never turned back, Graham has gradually softened his positions, even on issues that touch on core doctrine.
- In 1949, after a period of self-doubt, he ran for mayor of Los Angeles and came to the conclusion that Hell was not necessarily a bottomless pit of fire and brimstone, but rather the everlasting punishment of “separation from God.” He won the election that year.
- Indeed, Bob Jones III, the current president of the university founded by his grandfather, proposed in 2002 that fundamentalism be dropped from the name.
- According to current usage, the term “fundamentalist” conjures up images of fear, suspicion, and other repulsive feelings.
- Jones proposed the term “preservationist,” which has yet to gain widespread acceptance.
- In spite of the fact that overall church membership in the United States has increased by more than one-third since 1960, the mainline churches have seen their membership decline by 21% since 1960.
- New York’s First Presbyterian Church continues to serve in the liberal tradition of Harry Emerson Fosdick, but an evangelical church called Redeemer Presbyterian has emerged as the most important Presbyterian church in the city.
This megachurch was founded as a ministry for evangelical city professionals by Timothy Keller, a graduate of Machen’s Westminster Seminary.
A capacity congregation of twenty-eight hundred worshipers attends Redeemer’s Sunday meetings at Hunter, and that is just one of the church’s three weekend worship services.
A remarkable amount of growth has occurred in evangelical churches and organizations, evangelicals claim, owing in large part to the doctrinal latitude and character of moderation established by Graham and the New Evangelicals.
The essential Gospel message and biblical emphasis were not jeopardized, however, during this process.
Bernard, of the Christian Cultural Center in Brooklyn, was chosen as Graham’s New York chairman for his final crusade is significant.
In the words of Bernard, “We are committed to Christian orthodoxy.” “We recognize the authority of Scripture and are quite conservative in our outlook.” The culture, on the other hand, is not antagonizing us.
Too often in the past, Christians were heard speaking in a language that only other Christians could comprehend.” When it came to black church leaders, there was a lot of disagreement over the tragedy in New York.
Calvin Butts, the pastor of Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, told the New York Times a few weeks before the crusade that he’d received multiple complaints from his parishioners about Graham’s advertising efforts in Harlem, which included a large billboard on 125th St.
As a result of this, I personally feel that he has spent his whole professional life defending political right-wingers.
Not least because of tape transcripts detailing a White House conversation in which Graham denigrated Jews, Graham’s unique proximity to Richard Nixon damaged his reputation (for which he has apologized, often and abjectly, offering to crawl on his knees for forgiveness).
The first President with whom Graham had come into contact, Harry Truman, ignored him during a 1952 crusade in Washington, rejecting him as “just another religious charlatan,” prompting Graham to implore him (in vain) with seductive pleadings to reconsider his position.
While in Palm Beach, he met up with President-elect Jack Kennedy and former President Gerald Ford in Palm Springs.
When it came to public endorsements, affiliation with Graham provided a very specific type of public support, in addition to the private consolation provided during difficult times, such as those experienced by Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon.
He rose to prominence as a symbol of Protestant Christianity in the United States, thus defining evangelicalism as the dominant religion of the United States of America.
When Graham and Bush’s prodigal son, George W.
In a later letter, Bush stated that Graham “didn’t make you feel bad.” The fact that he made you feel loved is significant.
While growing up, William Franklin Graham III was likewise a devout heller, the personification of the “preacher’s kid” syndrome, which was heightened by the fact that his father was not just any preacher.
He also once led the local police on a vehicle pursuit, only to escape at the last minute by squeezing past the automated gates of the Graham estate.
Two Christian schools, where he was prone to fight and breach the rules, as well as church, were pressured to expel him, and he describes the experience as “boring.” At the age of twenty-two, Franklin’s father approached him and said, “I sense there’s a war for the soul of your life,” according to Franklin’s recollection.
- Riding the fence is not allowed.
- As for your mother and me, we’re praying for you, hoping that you’ll be able to make the correct decision.” The next night, Franklin claims he went down on his knees, threw away his smokes, and gave his life to the Lord.
- He had made a public commitment to devote his life to God’s service during his wedding, but he was determined to avoid any profession that may bring him into direct competition with his father.
- Franklin received a phone call one day from an evangelist called Bob Pierce, who was, by nature and by calling, somewhat of an anti-Billy Graham.
- Originally, Pierce had been a contemporary of Billy’s in the Youth for Christ movement during World War II, and he had been another young evangelist involved in the organization.
- (Templeton later left the ministry and returned to Canada, where he pursued a career in journalism, eventually rising to the position of managing editor of the TorontoStar newspaper).
- The social disorder, poverty, and human misery that Pierce encountered in China were of a magnitude he could hardly comprehend; however, there was also a deep spiritual hunger among all of the squalor, and the combined effect was strangely exhilarating for him.
After a while, a missionary shoved a young Chinese girl into Pierce’s arms, claiming that the child had been beaten and thrown into the streets by her father, who had become enraged by the attention she was receiving from the Christian missionaries.
Despite the fact that it was a reckless promise that Pierce had no reasonable expectation of keeping, his perception of China had been tipped.
It became his standard operating procedure to make rash promises; however, he soon learned to follow through on those promises.
Despite Pierce’s best efforts, the public reacted favorably, and he went on to found World Vision in 1955, which eventually grew to become the world’s largest Christian relief organization.
To be sure, the method was not without its drawbacks.
The World Vision board of directors expelled him from the organization after a bitter disagreement in 1967.
The man was suffering from a mental breakdown and was being treated with intravenous insulin.
It was during this dark period that Pierce began to suspect that Franklin, Billy Graham’s prodigal son, possessed a semblance of his own character.
He invited Franklin to accompany him on an Asian tour that would be unlike any of the trips Franklin had taken with his father.
Pierce pitched Franklin Graham on the great adventure of doing God’s work on an entrepreneurial level, rather than on the spiritual level.
Franklin was moved by Pierce’s thrill-ride evangelism, and he took over the running of Samaritan’s Purse shortly after Pierce’s death in 1978.
One of Franklin’s first humanitarian missions took him to a remote missionary hospital in Kenya, where patients were treated two to a bed due to overcrowding in the facility.
He appeared on Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker’s “Praise the Lord” television broadcast, where he told the story of the hospital and raised $489,000.
It was Graham’s desire for Samaritan’s Purse to be unlike any other organization, and certainly distinct from a Christian aid bureaucracy, and his ideas were sometimes unrealistic or misunderstood.
During the first Gulf War, he sent thousands of Bibles to American soldiers stationed in Saudi Arabia, a move that enraged the commanding general, Norman Schwarzkopf, who claimed that it threatened to destabilize the already-fragile coalition he was leading.
Amazon.com: Under the Big Top: Big Tent Revivalism and American Culture, 1885-1925: 9780199397860: McMullen, Josh: Books
“a well-written account of the revivalism of the Progressive Era in the United States In comprehending the complexity of white American Protestantism and its answers to modernity prior to the establishment of the so-called two-party system, which sees only evangelical or liberal Protestants, McMullen’s work is an essential source.” Journal of American History (Journal of American History) “Under the Big Topwill be of interest to scholars who are interested in American evangelicalism and the link between religion and mass consumer culture, as well as to general readers.
He has a natural ability to construct thoughtful, nuanced arguments, and he does a great job of situating turn-of-the century revivalists within the framework of a rising mass consumer culture in this book.
They were also huge fans of massive tent revivals.
Religion evolved from being something to be experienced to becoming something to be consumed alongside the greatest spectacles of the day.” -Matthew Avery Sutton, author of American Apocalypse: A History of Modern Evangelicalism (American Apocalypse: A History of Modern Evangelicalism) “With his book, McMullen provides an elegant and meticulously researched study of a small but influential group of ‘big tent’ evangelist abolitionists in New York City at the turn of the twentieth century.
The author claims that these personalities, both intentionally and unintentionally, fused old-fashioned revivalist theology with new-fashioned therapeutic consumer culture, drawing on extensive research to support his claim.
McMullen has made an important contribution to our knowledge of religion throughout that formative period.” G.T.
Instead, he demonstrates how Victorian evangelicals used advertising, celebrity culture, and the yearning for healing – all of which are all too familiar themes of the current period – to spread their message.
Matthew Bowman, author of The Urban Pulpit: New York City and the Fate of Liberal Evangelicalism (The Urban Pulpit: New York City and the Fate of Liberal Evangelicalism), says A valuable contribution to the study of evangelicalism, this microstudy of mass evangelism at the turn of last century demonstrates how this very specific form of religious community was linked with major cultural forces in play during that time and demonstrates how these mass meetings and campaigns helped to mediate the critical dynamics at work in American society.” -Religious Studies Review (Religious Studies Review) It is through this book that we can better understand how the fervor of large tent evangelists left a legacy that not only affected the church, but also conditioned many attendees to the rising consumer society, which places a high value on the person and their well-being.
The truths and history of the Catholic Church Josh McMullen has acquired his Ph.D.
Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary awarded him a Master’s degree in Theology and Church History, which he completed. He is presently employed as an Assistant Professor of History at Regent University in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Presbyterians and “Big Tent” Rationale
The commissioners of the Presbyterian Church (USA) will meet on June 20th, in about one hundred and eighty days. The focus of the 224th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United States is social rather than doctrinal. At the beginning of this year, the ” Big Tent,” an annual PCUSA convention focused on disadvantaged and oppressed people, assembled in Baltimore, Maryland. In response to a comment by late novelist and blogger Rachel Held Evans that was re-tweeted by More Light Presbyterians, an unofficial LGBTQ+ caucus within the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America: “If the Gospel you’re preaching isn’t good news for people on the fringes, it isn’t the Gospel,” says theologian Richard Foster.
- During his incarnation, Jesus extended out to individuals who were on the periphery of society.
- Today, persons on the periphery include those who hold unconventional religious ideas, immigrants, and those who are destitute.
- those who have nowhere else to turn” – how could we possibly refuse to?
- Jesus had a soft spot for the sinners who were in his immediate vicinity on Earth.
- Jesus treated his sinful followers, who included former tax collectors and working-class fishermen, like members of his own family.
- Jesus did not allow Zacchaeus to continue extorting money from others.
- The Big Tent movement’s language indicates that the tent should be opened up to meet the edges where they are.
Since the Sexual Revolution of the 1960s, the church has shifted to the left on theological concerns as well as social issues, and this is not a new development.
It is excellent news for people who are on the edges, but they must first join the tent of meeting.
The wealthy young man was unable to give up everything he owned, no matter how diligently he followed the Ten Commandments, and he was excluded from the festivities.
Instead, it must entice people who are on the outside to come inside.
When you enter someone’s house, you must conform to their expectations.
You inquire as to whether shoes should be removed or not.
The majority of the time, though, the gift comes from the guest.
The door does not come to you; rather, you must come to the door to find it.
Christians must travel to the fringes, just as Jesus did, in order to minister in a social and evangelistic capacity to those in need.
The way Christ accomplished this was by healing individuals of physical disease while also forgiving them of their sins.
Several good Christian social groups are devoted to this concept, and they are included below.
Jesus traveled to the peripheries in order to promote spiritual and physical healing, but He also established the rule of law in the process. “Welcome home!” is something Christians must say as well. Please come in, but please remove your shoes before entering.”
Last Reformation’s religious ‘Big Tent’ revival in New Ipswich causing no issues, say town officials
Torben Sndergaard, a Danish preacher, spoke to a crowd of hundreds in New Ipswich, Massachusetts. Since the arrival of the ‘Big Tent’ revival in town, everything has run well – including the adherence to the COVID-19 safety guidelines established by town officials and enforced by police officers. Photograph courtesy of Meghan Pierce
Original Reporting from
NEW IPSWICH, N.H. (AP) — Dane Torben Sndergaard pulls out a blue mask from his pocket as he stands in the open air outside a huge red-and-white tent on the property of state Rep. Paul Somero in New Ipswich. Sndergaard is an evangelist who travels the world preaching the gospel. He’ll put on a mask if the occasion calls for it, but the majority of those attending his tent revival in New Ipswich on Thursday night aren’t. ANOTHER RELATED STORY: 23rd of August ‘Please pray for us:’ After a violent wind destroys a tent at a faith healing revival, several people are hurt.
- Members of Sndergaard’s The Last Reformation read from the Bible and preached, occasionally handing the microphone to others who spoke about their efforts to spread the Gospel and offer prayer and healing from Jesus in New Hampshire this week.
- The story of one man’s day in Portsmouth, during which he baptized an acquaintance on the street in a public fountain, was told by another.
- The announcement of the approaching gathering prompted municipal officials, as well as officials from nearby towns, to speak out against it, claiming that it poses a health concern during the COVID-19 epidemic.
- Chris Sununu issued an emergency order last week requiring face masks to be worn at any organized gatherings of more than 100 people was because of the tent revival in New Hampshire.
- According to the New Ipswich Police Department, the tent revival has not generated any problems in the town during the previous week.
- It appears that there are more state police in town this week, and she believes she served a group of tent revival goers last week, who she describes as “quite kind” and who didn’t cause any disturbances.
- “I believe we had a large number of individuals from out of town for three days, and a large number of them claimed to be members of that group.” As nice as it possibly could be.
Some people were wearing gloves.
A man declared, ‘We’re here to preach the word of God, not to promote COVID,’ and that was the end of it.
Photograph courtesy of Meghan Pierce However, she stated that following that, it has been business as usual with just the regulars at the market.
“I experienced chills, and it terrified me out,” she said afterward.
Plans to bring the tent revival to New Hampshire began to take shape when COVID-19 regulations came into effect and the Granite State had rules and mandates that the tent revival would be able to adhere to, according to him.
It was done in order to avoid issues,” he explained.
‘We’ve traveled to the major cities — and the people there have been friendly — and we’ve had some interesting chats,’ Sndergaard added.
The participants are showing courtesy by maintaining a respectable distance or by donning a mask when requested to do so by a business or the individuals with whom they are conversing, he explained.
“However, if we approach someone and they are wearing a mask, we too will be wearing a mask.” The majority of out-of-state attendees have come from surrounding New England states, and just a small number of locals have attended the nighttime gatherings, according to him.
Torben Sndergaard, a Danish preacher, claimed he had avoided the town of New Ipswich because the people there have been so nasty.
baptized and confirmed, but I did not know Christ,” he said.
“Unfortunately, many people attend church on Sundays, but they conduct their lives as if they were part of the rest of the world the rest of the week.” According to him, the people who will be in attendance are looking to “experience Christ, life, and transformation.” “Many individuals come because they have previously seen our films and are looking for God,” says the pastor.
- They desire to have a personal encounter with Christ.” Sndergaard stated that he had avoided the town of New Ipswich because the people there have been so unwelcoming.
- It has been suggested that the Last Reformation, which promotes faith healing, may be regarded as a cult.
- Online footage of the New Ipswich tent revival nights may be seen at the following link: In addition to these films, Sondergaard invites visitors to check out the many more available on his website.
- Despite receiving several invites, he explained that he was looking for a state that was both excellent and easy to deal with because of the COVID situation.
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Under the Big Top: Big Tent Revivalism and American Culture, 1885-1925 (Review)
Paul Putz is an American actor and director who is most known for his role in the film The Great Gatsby. Janine Giordano Drake is a model and actress. Several scholars have lately indicated that it may be time to abandon the vocabulary of a “Fundamentalist/Modernist Crisis” when discussing early twentieth-century Protestantism in the United States. In particular, the writings of Matthew Bowman and Priscilla Pope-Levisonhave led to a more circumspect use of the “fundamentalist/modernist” dichotomy.
Among other things, R.G.
Tomlinson that “there are sectarian modes of modernity” and that, rather than providing a refuge for rural values in urban settings, the radical Holiness movement adapted “old cultural forms to new social realities.” In his book, Under the Big Top: Big Tent Revivalism and American Culture, 1885-1925 (Oxford, 2015), Josh McMullen continues the movement to reconsider how we arrange early twentieth-century Protestantism in the United States.
According to McMullen’s research, the biggest tent revivalists of the early twentieth century and the spectacles they produced should not be interpreted as anti-modern reactionaries or fundamentalists, but rather as participants in the transition away from a Victorian culture (with its emphasis on self-control and the importance of character) to a modern consumer culture (with its emphasis on materialism and consumerism) (with its emphasis on self-fulfillment and personality).
- In this interpretation of large tent revivalism, the Fundamentalist-Modernist binary is challenged and refined, primarily by relegating its usefulness to the restricted confines of certain theological discussions.
- The interplay between the growth of a mass consumer culture and evangelicalism, in particular the “unique and essential role” big tent revivalists played in bringing together “the Protestant ethic of salvation with the burgeoning consumer ethos,” is of more importance to McMullen (6).
- McMullen saw them as the professional traveling preachers who drew the most crowds during a period of time between the 1880s and the 1920s, when attending revivals was an exceptionally popular hobby in the United States.
- Bosworth (J.
- Gordon McPherson), and “Gipsy” Smith (Gipsy Smith).
- Big tent revivalists, he believes, are both rivals for Moody’s mantle and builders on the foundation that Moody established, and he views them as such.
People associated with Pentecostalism and divine healing join those who reject such signs of the Spirit; evangelists like Smith who believed women had no place in the pulpit join women evangelists; and revivalists like Sunday who often garnered community-wide Protestant mobilization for revival campaigns join those who, like Woodworth-Etter or Bosworth, operated on the margins of the Protestant establishment, even if they managed to gather clout for their campaigns.
- McMullen is well aware of the wide range of personalities that exist among revivalists.
- However, he is frequently more concerned in the things that the revivalists had in common with one another.
- McMullen’s attention is frequently drawn to the parallels between the two characters.
- Revivalists, according to him, saw the Protestant church of the late nineteenth century as spiritually sedentary, lacking of enthusiasm, and all too content with the trappings of fashion and respectability.
- As a result, Christians who were willing to go out into the world in order to convert it before the world came into the church were in short supply.
- Then they had to figure out how to make their message resonate with an urban society that was increasingly affected by a mass-market consumer mindset.
- Their attempt to make their message palatable resulted in them having an uneasy connection with mass consumer culture, which they later regretted.
The bulk of McMullen’s book is devoted to tracing the complicated relationship that big tent revivalists had with broader cultural trends, such as the rise of entertainment and celebrity culture, the emphasis on personality and self-fulfillment, the therapeutic search for well-being, and anxieties about American manhood in the twentieth century.
- The theme of “old-time religion” plays a significant role in McMullen’s work, and it is worth discussing briefly since his interpretation of it is emblematic of his whole approach to religion.
- When it comes to redemption from sin via trust in Jesus in order to avoid everlasting damnation, McMullen acknowledges that revivalists typically adhered to traditional Protestant principles.
- The packaging of the message of old-time religion is the focus of McMullen’s attention instead, since he sees it as an evangelical adaptation of a larger cultural trend.
- The focus on evangelical Protestantism as a style, rather than as a collection of ideas, is placed on revivalists’ demands to return to old-time religion in this way, which is comparable to the approach used by Matthew Bowman in The Urban Pulpit.
- Because McMullen’s book appears to be accomplishing for revivalists and conservative evangelical Christians what Susan Curtis’ book accomplished for social gospelers in A Consuming Faith, this is especially relevant at this time (1991).
- That being said, academics interested in American evangelicalism and in the link between religion and mass consumer culture will findUnder the Big Topan intriguing study.
- I indicated at the opening of this article thatUnder the Big Topstands with other work contesting the fundamentalist/modernist divide.
For researchers continuing to rethink, rewrite, and rearrange how the recent history of American evangelicalism is portrayed, McMullen’s book is a must-read.
What’s the Deal With That Big Evangelical-Christian Tent on the Mall?
We were confused. They prayed for us.
On the Mall, a Christian organization constructed a tent of 1,600 square feet, which has been there ever since, according to the group. What exactly is this item, you might question if you’ve ever passed by David’s Tent, as it’s known locally. I decided to pop by on a recent day to find out. David’s Tent is a nondenominational organization founded by an evangelical called Jason Hershey that operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. A rotating three-person crew distributes Bibles and plays Christian music at the organization.
As opposed to attempting to sell me one of the Hershey-authored books that were piled high on a neighboring table, he snatched his coat and suggested we meet outdoors.
My visit, on the other hand, had been inspired by practical rather than spiritual considerations, so I asked him to explain how the organization is able to occupy this prominent location.
All that is required is a simple permission from the National Park Service, which can be secured in a matter of minutes and is renewable every four months—indefinitely.
The snag is that the area that has been allocated must be consistently occupied.
The rental of the structure as well as the upkeep of a row of porta-potties are included in the costs.
“Do you want to find out how much you adore God?” says the speaker.
Fort recounts that a passerby once inquired as to how long the group intended to remain on the premises.
Fort walked back into the tent and prayed for him there in the darkness.
Elliott began working as an assistant editor at The Washingtonian in January 2018.
His writing has also featured in publications such as the Washington Post, TheAtlantic.com, and DCist.com, among other places. He currently resides in Bloomingdale.