Whenever the word "evangelical" appears in the media, you can be almost certain that it will be synonymous with "conservative" or even "right wing." And while that equation is often true, there are welcome signs that it is changing.
Last fall, the National Association of Evangelicals issued a document resulting from a several-year-long process. "For the Health of the Nation: An Evangelical Call to Civic Responsibility" begins with a strong "basis for Christian civic engagement" and then sets forth principles for evangelical engagement in specific areas of public policy.
Ron Sider of Evangelicals for Social Action, co-chair of the project, says, "The declaration calls evangelicals to a biblically balanced concern that reflects the full range of Gods concerns for the well-being of marriage, the family, the sanctity of human life, justice for the poor, care for creation, peace, freedom, and racial justice. No longer dare one accuse evangelicals of being one-issue voters focused exclusively on one or two issues."
The "care for creation" is what has drawn the most attention. While groups such as the Evangelical Environmental Network have for years been raising the biblical case for protecting the environment, for the NAE to join adds major credibility to the call. In a section titled "We labor to protect Gods creation," the NAE asserts: