Protestants: they strongly supported and undertook catechesis of their church members, while opposing anti-ecclesiastical forms of "enthusiasm"; they were only providing the clear scriptural message to believer-priests via translations in the first place - which already involved interpretation by church teachers - and they did so for personal reading but not for public interpretation or instruction.

Nevertheless, evangelical identity regarding the authority of Scripture has a history since the early days of Protestantism. This history introduces two other qualifiers or contrasts. First, evangelicals are oriented to piety that is personal. Their heritage stems not merely from those who opposed Orthodox and Catholic clericalism or hierarchy, but also from those who sought renewal of what they judged to be dead or dying Protestant state churches later on. Evangelicals hear and read the Bible for application and guidance not just doctrine, at home as well as in church - expecting to encounter the living God when doing so. Second, evangelicals are confes-sionally orthodox, rejecting "liberal" theologies and anti-supernaturalist approaches to the Bible. Accordingly, they view themselves - whether in free-standing churches or inside mainline denominations working for renewal - as the true heirs of the Protestant Reformation. The spread of Christianity within the global South admittedly complicates this picture, with shades of gray concerning how closely some "evangelicals" think they dwell to the classic Protestant "house of authority.''5 Moreover, questions about the viability of such an intellectual foundation within the Western academy, coupled with ever-increasing theological vitality and internal variability, make evangelicalism a very shadowy figure indeed. Nevertheless, we can still trace the outlines of an ''evangelical'' approach to Scripture around three major points: two themes regarding the nature of the Bible, and then (ideally productive) tension regarding the nature of its interpretation.

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