David Wells on how we put ourselves in place of the Bible (or, evangelical paganism)

The Bible is not a remarkable illustration of what we have already heard within ourselves; it is a remarkable discovery of what we have not and cannot hear within ourselves. Thus, our inward sense of God and our intuitions about meaning are irrelevant in any effort to differentiate biblical truth from pagan belief. It is how we apply ourselves to learn what God has disclosed of himself in a realm outside ourselves that is important. And unless we steadfastly maintain this distinction in the face of the modern pressures to destroy it, we will soon find that we are using the Bible merely to corroborate the validity of what we have already found within our own religious consciousness - which is another way of saying that we are putting ourselves in place of the Bible. It is another way of reasserting the old paganism. When that happens, theology is irredeemably reduced to autobiograpy, and preaching degenerates into mere storytelling.
— David Well, No Place for Truth, 279