Republicanism is not fundamentalism says leading evangelical
The director the Evangelical Alliance has urged that clear blue water be put between "legitimate Republican ideology" and an "evangelical fundamentalism which behaves as a new imperialism and distances people from the living God".
His call came in a statement following the election of George Bush in which religion played a key role.
Most notably issues of private morality were ranked more important by US voters than Iraq, the war on terrorism, or the economy.
Warning about the dangers of defining morality in purely private terms, Joel Edwards said that evangelical Christians in the UK would do well "to stress a biblical range of Christian values it puts forward into the public arena aimed at furthering the common good."
"Christians and non-Christians alike must ask; ëwhat are the important religious and moral issues of today?í" he said.
"In American political terms, it is a debate about the middle ground, the heart of Christian beliefs and ethics, as opposed to ideological extremes. This is now a global debate in which religious convictions and political behaviour can no longer be separated."
Echoing calls by Jim Wallis of the Sojourners Community in the USA, who ran a campaign during the election pointing out that God was "not a Republican or a Democrat" Edwards also warned about the confusion of Christianity with one political party.
"We all have a responsibility to ensure that he (Bush) does not present God as a Republican mascot or a member of the Republican Party" Edwards said.
"We must work to promote a political analysis which puts clear water between a legitimate Republican ideology and an evangelical fundamentalism which behaves as a new imperialism and distances people from the living God who belongs to everyone."