We've been reading through 1 Corinthians in the reading meetings on Wednesday nights. I've been convicted by a lot of things we've discussed. One particular point has been the taking of sectarian titles (1 Corinthians 1:10–17; 3:1–9). I don't want to get all legalistic about this, but I have to admit it's been hitting my conscience pretty hard.
I've been noticing how easily these sorts of titles roll off my tongue: "I'm a dispensationalist", "I'm a calvinist", "I'm no calvinist", etc. They just come out without my thinking about them.
I know there is a certain pragmatism to using descriptive vocabulary. It's a lot easier to say someone is a "calvinist" than to try and explain that she holds to the TULIP. I recognize that, and I'm not at all convinced that Scripture is condemning a vocabulary to make discussion easier. On the other hand, our words affect our thoughts...
And really, the Scripture calls "schools of opinion" a "work of the flesh" (Galatians 5:19–21). That in and of itself ought to give us pause.
So I used to say, "I'm a dispensationalist" but now I'm really uncomfortable with that sort of terminology. I'll be a lot more careful about saying something like that going forward.