But what is evangelicalism? It is essentially a movement in the Christian church towards a recovery of Christianity in its original form. While recognising a vast cultural gap between the modern world and the first century, evangelicals want to recapture the beliefs and morals of Christianity as Christ founded it. To do this, we hold centrally the importance of studying the Bible, believing it to be a true representation of God's will, and therefore the supreme source of authority for recapturing "pure" Christianity. Study of the Bible has led evangelicals to hold certain core doctrinal beliefs: that all people sin and therefore are in need of salvation, that only God can save us, that he acted to do this by sending his Son Jesus Christ to be our representative and substitute as he died on the cross, that we can receive forgiveness of sins by trusting in Jesus' death for our sake, that we should respond to Jesus' actions for us by living for him.
Evangelicals are not so arrogant as to claim to have perfectly achieved authentic Christianity, but we continue to strive for it, while recognising that other Christians may have different views on how to reach it. The evangelical position rests on assuming the unchanging sovereignty of God, and our ability to understand what he reveals to us. Other movements, by way of contrast, prefer to trust subjective experience, or tradition, or human philosophy as the final source of authority.