Absent Allies by David Mills

Absent Allies

David Mills on Conservative Avoidance

In my years in the Episcopal resistance, I often ran into conservative men and women who would explain to me that though they rejected some liberal innovation, “it is not a hill I am going to die on.” More than once someone told me that he would not fight an innovation right after telling me that he thought it completely unbiblical. Friends in other churches have told me that they have heard the same declaration from those who ought to have been their allies.

Often such people will concede that the innovation is heretical, or may well be heretical, but then claim that the battle has been lost and the innovators have won, or that the issue is not a “Gospel imperative,” or that opposing the innovation is either “not a hill I am going to die on” or “not a trench I want to die in,” or that the people on the other side are good and godly people whose good work cannot be denied, or that we cannot make a definitive judgment when sincere believers disagree.

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David Mills has been editor of Touchstone and executive editor of First Things.

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