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Quote of the Week

One must be very brave to offer a concise definition of fundamentalism in today’s climate. The only thing he can be sure of is that it won’t be universally accepted by fundamentalists. Here is a good attempt. It merits some thought.

Fundamentalism can be understood as a category of people and ideas that are aimed at living, maintaining, propagating, and protecting a sustainable and genuine Biblical Christianity as exemplified in the revelation of the Holy One of Israel and as described and prescribed exclusively in the absolutely authoritative revelation of God’s Word in Scripture.

Thomas Pryde


4 Responses

  1. Maybe not so much brave as stupid? LOL…

  2. Not a bad definition…in fact, its probably a pretty good shot at a definition of “fundamentalism” but I am still left with a few questions.

    How does that definition distinguish fundamentalism or fundamentalist from say…evangelicals or evangelicalism? Is it the word “PROTECTING” that is the distinguishable characteristic of fundamentalism? Is evangelicalism more about “propogating” and fundamentalism more about “protecting”? If it is, then I would be anxious to know what Pryde meant by the word “protecting” (as well as the rest of the descriptors I guess).

    Thanks for the post.

  3. Dear Tom Pryde/NeoFundy: This definition might have worked in 1920 (for the paleo-fundies), but I don’t think it makes distinction that you intend. (Unless I misunderstand where you’re coming from, which is possible.)

    Orthodox, conservative believers battling for truth in mainline denominations would insist that this definition applies to them. But I gather that the definition is not intended to apply to those affiliated with the PCUSA, ELCA, ECUSA, etc. And for all I know, you would also exclude those in the smaller, conservative denominations (PCA, LCMS, “Continuing Anglican”, etc.). Maybe even Southern Baptists are beyond the pale, but they would see themselves in your category.

    Personally, I like the definition, but I’m afraid it’s back to the drawing board. To vindicate your notion (?) of what makes a “fundamentalist”, I think you’re going to have to make a much bigger and more explicit and detailed deal of “separation”. –David

  4. Thank you for your thoughts on my definition. I just posted a bit of an explanation of what I mean by my definition. It is a bit rambling, since I haven’t had time to properly exegete my own definition, but it should push the discussion forward. Incidentally, I have no qualms with a broader definition of fundamentalist than many are willing to allow today. Welcome to NeoFundamentalism, David 🙂 …

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