Somebody made up a joke like this ten years. I decided to give it my own spin. I’ve tried to make it funny and not just mean-spirited.
- You might be a gnostic if…you think demons only exist in the Bible and not in real life.
- You might be a gnostic if…someone quotes Isaiah without citing it and you accuse them of carnal eschatology.
- You might be a gnostic if…you think that connecting bodily habits with spiritual disciplines denies the gospel.
- You might be a gnostic if…you think liturgy denies the gospel, even though the Holy Spirit uses that word in Acts 13.
- You might be a gnostic if…you deny the free offer of the gospel.
- You might be a gnostic if…you are a hyper-Calvinist.
- You might be a gnostic if…you don’t realize (5) and (6) are the same thing.
- You might be a gnostic if…you have the same view of angels as Immanuel Kant but you know your presbytery will never call you on it.
- You might be a gnostic if…when I ask that singing the doxology literally invokes angels in worship but you respond by saying, “That’s just words. We don’t really mean it.”
- That means you are also a nominalist.
- You might be a gnostic if…you confuse the intermediate state, which is necessarily dis-embodied and rightly in the presence of God, with the eternal state which is resurrected and drinking wine on Yahweh’s mountain.
R. Scott Clark made a humorous one of these on the Heidelcast one time on neonomianism. I cracked up listening to it.
A more charitable reading of criterion number 11 would make me a gnostic :).
During the summer I started a thread on Puritanboard on the soul and near death experiences. The result was predictable: the usual Monte Python style of discussion. What no one realized was that I was summarizing what every Father, East and West, said on the nature of the soul and angels.
So I hold to the disembodied soul in the intermediate state. But a resurrected body will be on the new heavens and new *earth*. Even Amils like Hoekema and Beale say this.
I understand to a degree their skepticism of “near death experiences.” One thing that is particularly troubling for me, as a Reformed Christian, is the ignorance of patristics; it seems that most Reformed have, at best, a survey of patrology and some understanding of Augustine’s soteriology.