When trying to discuss inconsistencies in the doctrines of the hardline Churches of Christ, it becomes frustrating. Many hardline members operate from a condescending attitude: We have the truth, we will never be proved wrong; everyone else is ignorant; if they would only follow our clear logic they would see the truth; they must be dishonest if they cannot see the truth.
The result of this attitude is that the person leaving the Churches of Christ feels misjudged and unheard. The amount of hard work that the leaver puts into the discussion is completely disproportionate to the amount of work the stayers put into the discussion. The leaver carefully thinks out the bible stories that show how the faith plus works doctrine is unbiblical, then combs over his essay repeatedly, correcting and polishing. Only to find a hardline stayer writing slapdash stream-of-thought replies that start out: “I am so glad you are willing to reason with the scriptures. We need to speak where the Bible speaks…” and ends with, “you are ignoring biblical authority, spitting in the face of God, and will pay for it in eternity.”
But stop for a minute and look at what is motivating that condescension. Condescension is always motivated by low self-esteem. The staunchest members have the most to lose by changing their understanding of God. They have found a way to be important. They may have been slapped around and knocked into obedience by their parents, made fun of for crying as children and told their opinions were stupid, but spiritually they are superior to every other church in town. Do you really expect you can take that away from them so easily?