When Changing Your Mind is a Sign of Strength and When It Isn’t
by Matt Rawlings
One of my former theology profs used to remind his students that it is not enough to learn the historical and cultural background of the Biblical text but to go on to ask, “What does this text require me to change?” The Bible should constantly challenge us to re-examine our lives including our theology.
I came to Christ in 1997 but held a pretty fuzzy view of the faith. I attended a pretty progressive seminary and wondered through the Emergent Church movement wilderness for nearly seven years. But then the works of Lee Strobel and a handful of others converted me to classic evangelicalism. I read through Wayne Grudem’s massive but accessible Systematic Theology and listened to a lot of sermons from Mark Driscoll, John Piper, etc. and became a Calvinist.
But then I listened to William Lane Craig debate Paul Helm on a radio show and read Kenneth Keathley’s Salvation and Sovereignty, which has me examining Molinism.
I have changed my mind a lot over the years and some have hinted that this is a sign of weakness. I agree that someone changing their mind for purely volitional reasons is indeed a sign of weakness. (i.e., the young people I meet who become atheists or agnostics at exactly the same time they engage in new romantic relationships). But changing one’s mind because of a close study of Scripture that agrees with a logical argument is always a strength. In fact, it should be a part of everyone’s ongoing process of sanctification.
If you hold a certain theological position such as any of the following: young earth creationism or old earth creationism; premillennialism or amillennialism; egalitarianism or complimentarianism; arminianism, molinism or Calvinism; evidentialism or presuppositionalism; etc. Ask yourself if you have truly examined other positions with an open mind. If not, then at least hold your position with a fair degree of humility…
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