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Despite the civil rights progress he fought for and saw on the horizon in the 1950s and '60s, Martin Luther King Jr.—increasingly concerned by America's moral vision, admitted—"I've come to believe that we are integrating into a burning house."
In A Burning House, Brandon Washington contends that American Evangelicalism is a house ablaze: burning in the destructive fires of discrimination and injustice. The stain of segregation remains prevalent, not only in our national institutions, but also in our churches, and this has long tarnished the witness of Christianity and hampered our progress toward a Christ-like vision of Shalom—peace, justice, and wholeness—in the world. Common doctrine may unite black and white evangelicals, but rifts such as social ethics and cultural influences still separate us.
Throughout this challenging but reconciliatory book, Washington gives a historical and theological appraisal of American evangelicalism to understand how we came to be where we are and what our response should be. Instead of calling the movement to become something new, he challenges it to live into what it has always been in Christ and strive for deliberate and sacrificial integration—the unity of believers of all ethnicities.
A Burning House is a rallying call to a waning movement whose most public leaders have often turned a blind eye to, or even justified, the sin of racism—a movement whose theology is sometimes compromised by a secular anthropology. This is a call to both white and black evangelicals to better understand our past so that we can better embrace the unifying and comprehensive message of the gospel we preach.