Fundamentalism, within Christianity, has gained a bad name over the last four decades. Part of that bad name has been the product of men and ministries I would never associate myself with and would doubt their claim to historic fundamentalism. So, before you answer the question in the title with a resounding, NO, let me explain what I mean.The term fundamentalist has it’s roots in the early 1900’s.It is a term that describes those who believe in and hold firm the fundamentals of the faith.So, though the term, as descriptive of a group of people, is relatively new, the beliefs we hold dear are not.Fundamentalism as a movement within Christianity began, in large part, within the Presbyterian denomination, especially within conservative theologians at Princeton University.The necessity of Fundamentalism arose from liberal theology in the early 1900’s that declared the Word of God, the Bible, was not as authoritative or as reliable as once thought, an idea known as ‘higher criticism’.The debates between liberal theologians, asserting higher criticism, and conservative theologians, holding fast to historic Christian positions, became known as The Fundamentalist-Modernist Controversy. During these debates within and between denominations in America there was a series of booklets published known as ‘The Fundamentals’.There were 12 books in all, dealing with just five subjects.These five subjects became known as the fundamentals of the faith and are in fact the identifying marks of historic fundamentalism.These five fundamentals of the faith are:· 1.) The inspiration of the Bible by the Holy Spirit and the inerrancy and reliability of Scripture as a result of that inspiration.· 2.)The virgin birth of Christ.· 3.)The Deity of Christ.· 4.)The substitutionary death of Jesus Christ on the cross as the atonement for our sin.· 5.)The Bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and the future physical return of Christ to earth as promised.There is a necessity in today’s culture of Fundamentalism to draw a distinction between what I would identify as Historic Fundamentalism and Social Fundamentalism.Historic Fundamentalism is what has been described above.Fundamentalists are generally a conservative bunch, both theologically and socially.This conservative nature has led to non-Fundamentalist being called Fundamentalists based on their conservative stance, not their doctrine.Groups like Westboro Baptist and their pastor, Fred Phelps, have been identified in the media lately as Baptist Fundamentalists.This is the group that pickets at funerals of dead soldiers, spouting hate-filled and unchristian rhetoric.Groups like these are seen by the general public as extremely conservative, when in reality they are just extremely wrong. This is not Historic Fundamentalism.Social Fundamentalists are ones who believe that their sense of morality and modesty are fundamental to true faith.Don’t get me wrong here, I firmly believe in Biblical standards of modesty and morality, but I am not willing, as Social Fundamentalists are, to assert that to remain modest, a woman has to wear a skirt all the time. Neither would I assert that a ‘good Christian’ avoids all secular forms of entertainment. Nor am I willing to dictate that men have to have short cropped hair and wear their suit and tie to church. I do have short hair, I do wear a suit to church, and I am cautious over what I and my family are exposed to in entertainment, but those things are not fundamental to my faith, they are the result of my faith, not the basis for it.I have a friend who was on the road and decided to attend a church he came across in his travels.As he entered the church he was told that he would not be allowed to attend if he did not have a tie.Unfortunately, anymore this ridiculous mandate is reminiscent of other stories from within the very broad range of Fundamentalism. I have met socially conservative people from nearly every mainline denomination in America, not all of them were Fundamentalists. I don’t care if you wear skirts all the time or don’t have a TV in your home, but don’t make those things the marks of Fundamentalism.My point is this, not all Fundamentalists take the ‘fun’ out of Fundamentalism.Not all Fundamentalists judge others spirituality based on how they dress, how long their hair is, or where they go and who they hang out with.I am a Fundamentalist who rides motorcycles, generally dislikes wearing a tie, watches TV when I’m not reading a book, and am nearly as comfortable in a hunting blind as I am at the beach.I’m a Fundamentalist and if you believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God, Jesus was born of a virgin, Jesus Christ is God, Jesus died on the cross for my sins and yours, and that he resurrected from the grave to return to heaven and will return again to earth one day to establish his kingdom in eternity, then you too are a Fundamentalist.