Tuesday, February 26, 2008

this time, a serious quiz...i think

Somebody sent me this link, so I thought I'd share it here: The Hermeneutics Quiz.

This quiz is designed to help you identify what patterns of thought etc. you use when interpreting Bible scripture. The designers of the quiz mean it seriously--and fortunately, they add a caveat emptor (I seem to be using that phrase a lot, lately.) by acknowledging that one little quiz isn't going to identify all the nuances of an individual's method of interpretation.

That aside, it *is* an interesting quiz, and it will lead you into a little bit of self-examination if you allow it.

I "scored" a 52, which, according to the quiz, places me in the "conservative hermeneutic" group. According to the quiz, the opposite end of the scale is "progressive."

I recently told someone recently, I no longer know what the labels "conservative" and "liberal" mean. The main cause of my confusion is the reactions of other people to my expressions of certain beliefs: The Conservatives label me "liberal," and the Liberals label me "conservative." As a result, for me, those two appellations no longer have definition and have become wholly meaningless bywords.

So when this quiz labels me "conservative," it perplexes me. Like I said, it's definitely thought-provoking...but it's also annoying--which, I suppose, means that it does have meaning to me, after all...and not a good one. The fact that the opposite end of the scale is "progressive" gives me the impression that "conservative" means "lack of progress."

I take umbrage at that. True, I have my hard times of spiritual stagnation (which, I believe, we all of us have)...but I certainly do categorize the general state of my spiritual life as one of "moving forward" or "making progress."

I've thought for a long time that I'd like to write out a sort of "belief statement" for myself. As in, a collection of beliefs that I hold. I feel the need to do this for me, if for no other reason than to gain a little clarity (not the "Minority Report" versionof clarity, don't worry). This would be for my own benefit, so I might or might not post it here. Dunno. Hafta think about that one.

Anyway...like I said: The Hermenutics Quiz = a bit annoying, but also thought-provoking. And since the two (annoying and thought-provoking) so often go hand-in-hand (those two *really* need to quit with the PDA), I'd say taking the quiz is worth one's time. It swings my verge, anyway. ;o)


Amy Nickerson said...

I took the quiz just now and scored a 51. Not surprising to me at all. I figured I'd be somewhere on the fence of conservative/progressive. I can relate to your feelings about these labels we place on people, though. I dislike being considered one or the other and would rather just be known as a Christian than what "type" of Christian I am. I guess I've turned a few heads since I've joined Quail. It frustrates me that I have to try to explain myself to some people. Sigh...anyway, thanks for the though provoking material!

The Raabs said...

I have for a long time realized that the labels only mean something to the person using them at the moment (and you have to understand their bias and context - or is that progressive thinking? ;-)).
I just took the test and came out at 46, but they didn't give me enough options on some questions. The Sabbath question, for example - there was NO answer that I agreed with. The Sabbath was a Jewish custom not applicable to Christians (but not necessarily done away with) and did not morph into Sunday. But that option was not offered.
"Progressive" is indeed not the opposite of conservative. "Liberal" implies freedom - does that mean that I am not free if I am "conservative"? Playing with words.

Court said...

Amy: You're quite welcome, my dear head-turner. One is glad to be of service. ;o)

Scott: I agree wholeheartedly. Playing with words, and not enough options. Altogether, a biased quiz.