Top 10 Ways You Know You are Desperately Clinging to Your Theological Tradition
10. You constantly have to keep telling yourself and others, "Nobody before [insert historical figure's name] believed [insert doctrine you don't like]."
9. Your first response, while interacting with someone about a certain text, leads you immediately away from it and to another verse. You won't handle the text on its own terms.
8. You have a list of pet verses that are "so obvious" that exegesis of them has never been necessary.
7. When interacting with honest exegesis that offends your beliefs, you find some obscure "scholarly" reference to disprove it, without ever following through to see what the text would actually say if this "scholar" was right.
6. You spend most of your energy trying to demonstrate why the text can't say something rather than determining what it actually does say.
5. You are glad you can come up with an isolated interpretation of a verse that doesn't force you to believe something you don't want to believe, but placing that interpretation back into its immediate context is something you just aren't ready to try.
4. The most common phrase uttered from your lips is, "But you have to take into consideration what the whoooooole Bible says!"
3. Accurately understanding and representing opposing views before you try to destroy them is optional.
2. If you can't overcome their honest exegesis of Scripture, you can always attempt to character-assassinate the exegetes who disagree with you. That way others will see that these men couldn't possibly be right since they are so "un-Christian".
1. You ask a myriad of questions, mostly philosophical in nature, that you have absolutely no honest desire to hear an answer to. You just hope it will throw the other person off so much that they will shut up. Because in the end, all that matters is not what the text really says, but that the other person's interpretation isn't right.
Let us all examine ourselves to see if we fall into these. This is something we all need to be watchful for.