That’s the question Frank Bellizzi poses, and he suggests, based on coverage of Old Testament studies in Christianity Today magazine, that the powers-that-be among evangelicals today are not interested, though they used to be, in keeping the rank-and-file of the movement up-to-date on developments in the field. Go here.
I don’t see that myself. For example, CT’s famous book awards made from 2000 - 2009 (go here) contain an exceptionally broad range of recommendations. Most of the recommendations are designed to stretch and challenge the average evangelical reader. No evidence of a dumbing down process in my opinion. This is true across the range of subjects treated, biblical studies and theology included. Further, a comparison with CT of old and CT today is deceptive, since in the present the heavy-duty intellectual debate takes place more often in its sister publication, Books & Culture. And who is one of the prime mover-and-shakers behind B & C? None other than Mark Noll, who famously wrote The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind.
To be clear, the scandal remains. But in a country in which 1/3 of Democrats believe that Bush and Cheney were 9/11 co-conspirators and 1/3 of Republicans believe that Barack Obama is a Muslim and that he was born in Kenya, in short, in a country in which a vast number of people are prone to buying the flimsiest of theories, evangelicals don’t stand out as different. I wish we did. But we don’t. Someone ought to write a book entitled The Scandal of the American Mind.