In Search of Ancient Roots: The Christian Past and the Evangelical Identity Crisis

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by: Kenneth J Stewart

The Gospel Coalition Book Award; Jesus Creed Book of the Year in Church History

Protestant evangelicalism is in crisis.

As evangelicals increasingly lose contact with the churches and traditions descending from the Reformation, it becomes harder to explain why one should remain committed to the Reformation in the face of perceived Protestant deficits and theological challenges. A number of younger Protestants have abandoned evangelicalism for traditions that appear more rooted in the early church.

In Search of Ancient Roots examines this phenomenon within a wider historical context. Ken Stewart argues that the evangelical tradition in fact has a much healthier track record of interacting with Christian antiquity than it is usually given credit for. He surveys five centuries of Protestant engagement with the ancient church, showing that Christians belonging to the evangelical churches of the Reformation have consistently seen their faith as connected to early Christianity.

In Search of Ancient Roots shows that evangelicals need not view their tradition as lacking deep roots. Christian antiquity is the heritage of all orthodox Christians, and evangelicals have the resources in their history to claim their place at the ecumenical table.