Question: "What is the World Evangelical Alliance?"
Answer: The World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), founded in 1846, is an international association of ministries with the stated goal “to strengthen the evangelical Church around the world to advance the Good News of Jesus Christ and to seek holiness, justice and renewal at every level of society, so that God is glorified as the nations of the earth are transformed” (from their official website, accessed 9/18/2018). The World Evangelical Alliance has networked churches in 129 nations and represents more than 600 million evangelical Christians. The rationale behind the World Evangelical Alliance is that, when the world sees the body of Christ united for good, the unsaved are more likely to be drawn to Him.
The World Evangelical Alliance addresses specific issues such as religious liberty and social justice from an evangelical perspective. The World Evangelical Alliance advances issues of importance to Evangelicals and addresses the concerns of the marginalized. The World Evangelical Alliance uses government diplomacy, engagement at the United Nations, and media outlets to make itself heard.
In addition to advocating for evangelical positions around the world, the World Evangelical Alliance also “serves to equip its members with publications, research, leadership training and resources on topics of theology, missiology, social justice and more” (op. cit.). The World Evangelical Alliance promotes Christian unity in evangelism, citing Jesus’ high priestly prayer in John 17. The World Evangelical Alliance sponsors many collaborative projects to foster greater strategic impact for the ministries it represents and stresses the importance of united prayer among Evangelicals.
The doctrinal statement of the World Evangelical Alliance is thoroughly biblical and evangelical. Membership is open to four types of organizations who can wholeheartedly agree with the World Evangelical Alliance statement of faith:
• Regional evangelical fellowships and their national fellowships/alliances.
• Independently incorporated organizations that work in harmony with WEA structures and serve the WEA constituency.
• Independently incorporated organizations with their own specific ministries and accountability, an international scope of ministry, and the capacity and authority to serve in and beyond the WEA community.
• Church networks and denominations in agreement with the statement of faith and objectives of the World Evangelical Alliance.
The World Evangelical Alliance may be considered the evangelical counterpart to the theologically liberal World Council of Churches (WCC).