An interview with Scot McKnight from 2010 —

Trevin Wax: Scot, in your article, you write: “It is not exaggerating to say that evangelicalism is facing a crisis about the relationship of Jesus to Paul, and that many today are choosing sides.” Why do you think evangelicals feel the need to choose sides in this discussion?

Scot McKnight: We are driven by the way we think to synthesize (or systematize) or to harmonize or to compartmentalize. These sorts of actions are inherent to how our brains work…

Many evangelicals came to faith through a Pauline-anchored set of categories. In many ways it was about the gospel of the Romans Road…

An analogy: the Judaizing opponents of Paul in Galatians knew how to read the Bible through a Moses lens, and Paul was teaching them to read the Bible (or Israel’s Story) through an Abraham lens. The Judaizing opponents couldn’t make sense of what Paul was saying, and that led them to say “Why then did God even give the Law?”

I see the same thing going on today. Evangelicals have grown up with a gospel, and that gospel has become their hermeneutic, and that hermeneutic is essentially derived from a specific way of reading Paul, and by that I mean a soteriological reading of Romans 1-8. It is the way we (or most of us) think.