Christianity is not compatible with Platonism (contra Radical Orthodoxy’s 12th thesis). Nor, in fact, compatible with Aristotelianism or Stoicism, the other two of the ancient philosophies that sometimes try to overcome biblical Christianity. There are elements of Platonism, Aristotelianism, and Stoicism, and Christianity should affirm these.
There are also truths in Hinduism, Islam, and Buddhism. Christianity is not compatible with these, either. Nor is it, in fact, compatible with Enlightenment modernism. Post-modernism is an amoebic entity which sometimes contains things compatible with Christianity, sometimes does not.
I think Radical Orthodoxy (as in the 24 Theses) is not something I can embrace, partly because the high concentration of philosophic and academic jargon renders many of the theses incomprehensible. And I also don’t think evangelicalism is “creepy,” and find that High Anglicanism, especially in its Anglo-Catholic manifestation, to be something that is as creepy as evangelicalism, just in different ways, contrary to this:
14. Radical Orthodoxy is focused on the recovery and non-identical repetition of an authentic pre-Scotist Catholicism. It finds elements of an authentic continuation of the same in High Anglicanism, but also in many other places and countries as well. It detests evangelicalism, because it is creepy, voluntaristic and therefore nihilistic.
What on earth do you suppose they even mean by evangelicalism? Evangelical is a good, solid Protestant word. It’s the word Luther used to describe himself. It means gospelly. To be evangelical is to be committed to the Gospel of Jesus Christ as it is presented to us in the Holy Bible. This is not “creepy, voluntaristic and therefore nihilistic.” This is what one would hope the Radical Orthodox wish to be.
I imagine, of course, that the composers of this manifesto have in mind certain manifestations of denominations called “evangelical” that originate largely in the United States and involve things that the British, due to a difference in culture, find inherently “creepy”, such as altar-calls and a strong emphasis on Public Displays of Religion. And rock’n’roll worship. And pastors who are treated like celebrities.
But those bits of the evangelical tradition that are potentially creepy and voluntaristic are not the sum total of evangelicalism. Much is to be affirmed in evangelicals, regardless if you consider yourself one, such as the strong commitment to the Bible. You may not agree with how a perceived “evangelical” reads the Bible — but s/he reads it. A lot. And seeks to understand in such pro-active living choices as weekly Bible studies and sermons rooted in Scripture.
This commitment to Scripture alone (rather than in any ancient pagan philosophical system) puts many evangelicals farther ahead than a lot of people in High Anglicanism. God encounters us through the Scriptures, not just the sacrament. To say evangelicals are creepy is almost a re-statement of the false dichotomy of Word vs. Sacrament. We need both to nourish our spiritual lives; Christ feeds us through each (and herein, frequently, lies evangelicalism’s weakness).
Evangelicalism detested because it is creepy? Pretty lame reason.