Few court cases have aroused more concern among evangelicals—or created more puzzlement—than the recent creation-science case in Little Rock, Arkansas. At stake were basic values to which the fundamentalist-evangelical community is deeply committed. The evangelical will lay down his life in defense of freedom of religion, and for most evangelicals, this includes the right to determine the education of his children. He knows that in many public schools, evolution is taught explicitly as the rational alternative to the biblical teaching about creation held by uneducated fundamentalists!
All evangelicals resent this. It is a violation of their constitutional right to the free exercise of their religion. They will make laws to secure their rights, and they will battle them through the courts and beyond. Eventually they will win—if America is to remain a free nation.
But evangelicals are equally committed against any infringement of the religious rights of others. For conscience’ sake they support separation of church and state and reject the establishment of any particular religion, including their own.
Evangelicals are divided over whether or not to support the Arkansas law. Here you can read how two conservative evangelicals sorted out the issues.—Eds.
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