By Dr. Kenneth L. Gentry Jr
YOU MIGHT BE A DISPENSATIONALIST IF:
IF you have on your den wall a framed, aerial photograph of Jerry Falwell.
IF in casual conversation with friends and fellow employees at work you begin every sentence with: “According to biblical prophecy….”
IF more than one of your children is named Ryrie, Chafer or Darby. (However, you may deduct this from your overall score if you have a child name Calvin.)
IF you get excited when you see a sentence with a parenthesis.
IF your license plate reads: “IM PR TRB.” (You get extra credit if you have a friend who actually knows what it means — and wishes he had one.)
IF you believe the musical “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” contains an apocalyptic message. (You get extra credit if on the basis of the coded message you have sold your house and cashed out your retirement investments and moved to the top of some mountain — on the side facing towards Jerusalem.)
IF you ever thought you sealed a victory in a theological argument by introducing your rebutal by stating: “Nevertheless, as Tim LaHaye has saliently argued….”
IF there are more underlined sentences in your copy of Late Great Planet Earth than in your Bible. (You get extra credit if you have a thumb-indexed edition of Late Great Planet Earth.)
IF your Pastor gives a sermon exclusively from the Scofield Reference Bible study notes. (You get extra credit if he doesn’t realize he has done so.)
IF you own a leather-bound, red-letter edition of the Left Behind series.
IF you have to have a full-color foldout chart before you can understand salvation by grace through faith.
IF you’ve ever had more than three candidates for the AntiChrist at one time. (You get extra credit if you justified it by arguing from the doctrine of the Trinity.)
IF you can read Stephen King novels and chuckle, but you see 666 on a cash register receipt and you run screaming out of the store, crying out: “I told you so!”
IF you took Hal Lindsey’s advice forty years ago not to make any long term plans and are now broke, uneducated and in a dead-end job. (You get extra credit if your sanctification is such that you are not miffed at his raking in millions and investing them in long-term real estate ventures while you declare: “He deserved it for all of his time-consuming research in the newspapers.)
IF you always make sure there’s at least one non-Christian pilot on every flight you take. (You get extra credit if you discount the argument that: “If God had meant for us to fly he would have given us tickets.” You must deduct points, however, if you are convinced Matt. 28:20 is a compelling argument against Christians’ flying, because you understand that in this passage Jesus warns that: “Low, I am with you always.”)
IF you believe the concern about “population explosion” refers to Muslims blowing themselves up on a daily basis to make a salient theological point, and you are convinced there must be a verse in Revelation that mentions it (because explosions produce fire, fire occurs often in Revelation, and Revelation contains the letters “M,” “U,” “S,” “L,” “I,” “M” scattered throughout the text).
IF you still hold a lingering suspicion about Gorbachev’s birthmark on his forehead. (You get extra credit if you never confuse the shape of his birthmark with a map of Texas.)
IF you believe that Grant Jeffrey, Dave Hunt, Hal Lindsey, or John Hagee is a theologian.
IF you know the location of the European Central Bank because you believe you have properly exegeted Revelation 13:17 from the original Belgium version.
IF you count trampoline aerobics as “Rapture Practice” in your 4:00 am devotions each morning. (You get extra credit if you believe the neighbors who live in the apartment below you are non-Christians and are persecuting you because they complain.)
IF you think Texe Marrs’ books belong in the “Reference Works” section of your local Christian bookstore. (You get extra credit if you think they belong in your Christian bookstore at all.)
IF you look for Chick Tracts in the “Theology” section of your local Christian bookstore. (You get extra credit if you shop at a Christian bookstore that actually has a “Theology” section. Note: The WWJD supply section is not considered a “Theology” section.)
IF you ever stand on your head out of the fear that the Rapture will occur when Jesus returns over China, because you are confident of your exegesis of Rev. 9:16 regarding the battle involving 250,000,000 million Chinese soldiers. (You get three extra points if you can name each one of the 250,000,000 million soldiers without making the sound of a spoon hitting the floor.)
IF your baby’s stroller has a break-away sun bonnet. (You get extra credit if it also has a bumper sticker on it stating: “In case of Rapture this vehicle will be unbabied.”)
IF you have five children, but refuse to buy life insurance on yourself because “I won’t be needing it.”
IF your personal hymn favorite is: “My hope is built on nothing less, than Scofield’s notes and Moody Press.”
IF Clarence Larkin is your favorite artist and you scoff at Norman Rockwell’s meager artistic attempts.
IF you think there are only two millennial positions: Pre-Trib and Liberal.
IF your favorite party game is “Pin the horns on the Beast.”
IF your favorite Christian TV game show is: “Name that Antichrist.”
IF after reading the Left Behind series you file formal legal papers leaving your body to science fiction. (You must deduct points, though, if you realize the error of reading too many dispensationalist books and you donate your eyes as an organ donor before you die.)
Tomorrow I will finalize this intriguing theological discovery tool, which I have named: YMBI Analysis. Check in tomorrow, same time, same URL. Be there, or be a trapezoid (which is worse than being a square because a trapezoid appears to be a dizzy square).