Christianity Today Investigates Influential Evangelical Figure David Jang
Religion TodayReligious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
- 2012 Aug 16
Editor's note: At the request of the Christian Post, the sentence that previously stated "Jang and his followers have also founded media outlets -- including the Christian Post -- and are key influencers in the World Evangelical Alliance" was changed August 27, 2012. The Christian Post maintains Jang was not the founder of its publication.
The National Association of Evangelicals is studying the theology of a potential buyer of Glorieta Conference Center to guide staff leaders and trustees of LifeWay Christian Resources in deciding whether to sell the 2,100-acre property near Santa Fe, N.M., to Olivet University, according to ABP News. The study is a "primary condition" regarding the sale of the property to the San Francisco university, whose founder, Korean pastor David Jang, has become an increasingly influential figure in Asian and now American evangelicalism. According to an investigative report by Christianity Today, Jang's followers and associates have also founded media outlets -- including the Christian Post -- and are key influencers in the World Evangelical Alliance. However, many say Jang leads a group that has encouraged the belief that he is the "Second Coming Christ." Christianity Today reported on both sides of conflicting allegations that Jang's teachings are influenced by Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church and that many of his followers secretly believe he is a messianic figure completing Jesus' earthly mission. Olivet's president, Bill Wagner, doesn't believe the allegations against Jang, but LifeWay officials said in response to the Christianity Today report: "We have been aware of concerns about Olivet University and its movement for some time. Those concerns are precisely why we engaged the National Association of Evangelicals to conduct a thorough review of their theological views to determine compatibility with ours." The review is expected to be completed this fall, and will then be reviewed by LifeWay's leadership and trustees.