This Easter a clear line was drawn in the sand in British Evangelicalism. For years, whenever the word “evangelical” was mentioned, people in the UK would think almost immediately of Spring Harvest — easily the UK's largest Christian conference. Part of that package has been Word Alive, a distinct all-age event run by UCCF (who owns the UK-based Intervarsity Press) and the Keswick Convention in partnership with Spring Harvest. At the heart of Word Alive has been a separate student track with up to 2,000 students. Beginning in 2008, there will be no more Word Alive at Spring Harvest.
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Steve Chalke has made his dislike of penal substitution very clear by likening God's act of punishing Jesus in our place to a cosmic child abuser. In good conscience, we simply could not allow Steve to teach during the Word Alive week. We're very sad that after 14 years of fruitful ministry, Spring Harvest has decided to end the Word Alive partnership because we feel unable to shift on this position.