“My great sorrow is that America is squandering her heritage.”

Those strong words came from author, theologian and philosopher Os Guinness. He joined Austin Hill In The Morning to discuss his new book Renaissance: The Power of the Gospel, However Dark The Times.

Guinness has written eloquently in three previous books about Christians’ engagement in the public square. This time he’s calling to the church to pray for revival, and to change its ways.

“Evangelicalism is in a total meltdown right now” he says. “It is absolutely incapable of changing the culture right now. Is our view of the world around us informed by our culture, or is it informed by the Gospel? We need to restore our belief in the power of the Gospel.”

Guinness

Guinness

Guinness’ book ends each chapter with a specific prayer for renewal. He’s also calling the church to un-do some of the things it has brought about in the realm of public policy. Noting that the “Christian right” is endearing a tremendous backlash right now, he says that Christians in the U.S. have sought to correct cultural and spiritual problems with governmental power.

“We’ve lost our understanding of the common good” he says. “We have to understand that every freedom or right that we try to secure for ourselves must also be secured for everybody else, even people with whom we disagree.”

Noting that many things are “profoundly wrong” with America, he says that a transformed and empowered Church is what will make the difference. He also calls on American Christians to stop being ambivalent about their own country, and recognize that the great American experiment, however flawed it has been, is nonetheless a noble experiment.

A transformed church

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