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A Return to Primitive Christianity in a Modern Age

Jane Lampman

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The earliest texts provide shelter from currents of change

As many seekers have set off in recent years to pursue spirituality outside the bounds of organized religion, another trend has quietly emerged within and across Christian denominations: a return to orthodoxy.

In response to the disillusionments of modern life, this resurgence is gathering believers of many ages and faith communities - mainline and evangelical Protestant, Catholic, and Eastern Orthodox - in a vigorous ecumenical exploration of the early teachings of Christianity.

It is perhaps most visible in the least expected place - the liberal mainline churches - where many "renewal" groups are taking an assertive stance, seeking to replace what they consider secularized theology and political activism with biblical authority and evangelical fervor.

Methodist theologian Thomas Oden, a former liberal turned avid orthodox, describes and makes the case for this new movement in "The Rebirth of Orthodoxy: Signs of New Life in Christianity." While his book seems addressed more to the theologically and philosophically attuned than to the average layperson, his aim is to win believers to the cause of "classic Christianity." That is, Christian tradition as defined by the sacred texts of scripture, the ecumenical councils of the first five centuries, and the teachings of the "fathers of the first millennium."

Read the entire article on the Christian Science Monitor website.



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Copyright 2001-2014 OrthodoxyToday.org. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of this article is subject to the policy of the individual copyright holder. See OrthodoxyToday.org for details.


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