Christian Ethics Conference to Address Policy Issues

Sept. 15, 2008

by Jaime Bates, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

With the current intersection of politics and Christian issues, the Christian Ethics Today Foundation will host a conference on "Red Letter Christians, An Emerging Evangelical Center, and Public Policy Issues" on Sept. 16 - 17 at Baylor University's George W. Truett Theological Seminary.

The Christian Ethics Today Foundation is dedicated to providing laypersons, educators and ministers with a resource for understanding and responding in a faithful Christian manner to moral and ethical issues. Since 1995, the foundation has published a journal five times a year, providing it free of charge to more than 5,600 readers. The journal, like the conference, focuses on public policy issues that are of concern to contemporary Christians.

Joe Trull, editor of Christian Ethics Today, said in recent years politicians have chosen to sway evangelicals with the two main issues - abortion and homosexuality - while neglecting other issues such as hunger, AIDS and poverty.

"The conference addresses the question, 'Is there an increase in the number of evangelicals focusing on a wider range of issues?'" Trull said.

Such evangelicals in recent years have become known as Red Letter Christians, hence the title of the conference. Red Letter Christians receive their name from the term "red letter Bible." They believe that Christians need to focus on "the red letters" of the Bible, they need to focus on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. As such, they believe the view of public policy should be the same, broad and encompassing all issues, not just the few that are in high debate.

The Conference registration begins at 11 a.m. Tuesday in the Truett Seminary lobby.

The Conference will begin at 1 p.m. Tuesday, with a look at Baptist heritage starting at 1:15 p.m. Interim Baylor President, David Garland, also dean of Truett Seminary, will present a lecture on Henelee Barnette. James Dunn will lecture on the life of Thomas Buford Maston, and Jimmy Allen will lecture on Foy Valentine.

Tony Campolo, author of Red-Letter Christians, will present a lecture on "Red-Letter Christians in a Red and Blue World" at 7p.m. Tuesday.

Dunn will give a presentation on "The Two Kingdoms: God and Politics" at 9:15 a.m. Wednesday. His lecture will address the question, "How can you be in the kingdom of God and not be corrupted by politics?"

Following Dunn, David Gushee will give a lecture on "A Seamless Garment Ethic: Sanctity of Life Issues" at 10 a.m. Wednesday. His lecture will focus on how an individual can maintain a consistent view of Christian ethics that encompasses all public policy issues.

Looking for more news from Baylor University?