Who is an evangelical? Dr. Thomas Kidd joins Matt and Derek to discuss this pertinent question which is also the title to his recent book, Who Is an Evangelical?: The History of a Movement in Crisis. Listen in on why Dr. Kidd does not include activism as an identifiable factor for evangelicals, why it seems that evangelicals are susceptible to politicization, and if being “born again” unmoors evangelicals from historical institutions?


Intro + defining what an evangelical is [0:00 – 5:05]

Why are we still arguing about who *really* is an evangelical? [5:05 – 10:10]

Is there something about evangelicalism that enables its members to become susceptible to politicization? [10:10 – 15:30]

Why Dr. Kidd’s thesis of who is an evangelical does not include activism, politics, and prosperity gospel preachers [15:30 – 21:23]

Why evangelicals are ethnically diverse and how evangelicalism has handled racial tensions historically and contemporarily [21:23 – 27:30]

Are certain social issues part and parcel to the broad definition of evangelicalism? [27:30 – 34:02]

Does the criteria of being “born again” untether a movement from its original institutions? [36:06 – 41:35]

The future of evangelicalism and who Dr. Kidd is voting for in 2020 (not really) + Conclusion [41:35 – 49:27]


If you’re interested in supporting the show financially, you can check out our Patreon here.

Finally, as always, follow DerekAndrew, and Alastair for more tweet-sized brilliance. Thanks to Timothy Motte for his sound editing work. And thanks to The Joy Eternal for lending us their music, which everybody should download out of gratitude for their kindness.

Resources mentioned: 

Who Is an Evangelical?: The History of a Movement in Crisis

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Posted by Caleb Wait

Caleb Wait (MATS, Westminster Seminary California) is a writer and the producer of Mere Fidelity. He and his wife Kristin have two children and live in Northern California. You can follow him on Twitter @calebwait and he invites you to email him at ciwait93@gmail.com.


  1. Neither John nor Charles Wesley left the Church of England.


  2. […] “Who Is an Evangelical?” with Dr. Thomas Kidd – Mere Orthodoxy […]


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