The Bible and Logic

A common misrepresentation of the faith essential to pleasing God is that it is irrational to some degree.

The two most common reasons for declaring this blasphemy are: 1) the belief that there is insufficient evidence for faith (and therefore, it is a “leap in the dark”) and 2) the belief that self-contradiction is inherent in Christianity but is insignificant (and therefore, faith is “better felt than told”). All of this is a lie.

Like electricity, logic is of divine, not human, origin. While it is true that Greek philosophers like Aristotle probed and prodded the field of logic and then made axiomatic observations, none of them invented it. The first use in Scripture of the word “therefore”–an essential tool in the world of logic—does not occur after the lives of Aristotle or Plato; it occurs in the Garden of Eden when God says, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:24).

In Scripture, rational thinking in harmony with God’s word is never condemned as evil or sinful, but a lack of it is. In Matthew 22:29-32, for example, Jesus condemned the Sadducees in the strongest of terms for their ignorance of God’s word and their failure to rationally and rightfully infer the immortality of the soul and the certainty of the resurrection.

Throughout the book of Romans, the inspired apostle Paul logically exposes the Jews and their irrational rejection of the gospel. In chapter three, he quotes in rapid fire (vv. 10-18), Old Testament Scriptures decrying the sinfulness and unrighteousness of the people. He then immediately points out that these statements were not made about Gentiles but about Jews: “Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law” (v. 19). The Jews’ sin problem was equal to the Gentiles’: “they are all under sin” (v. 9).

In Romans 4, another atomic blast of logic is unloaded on the Jews and their widespread, irrational rejection of the gospel. Father Abraham—their venerated patriarch who received the nation, land, and seed promises (Genesis 12:1-3)–was justified not by meritorious works (vv. 1-8), circumcision (vv. 9-12), or the Law (vv. 13-25), the three essential taproots of first century Judaism. If a Jew wants to truly be Abraham’s spiritual descendant, he will need to walk in the steps of faith which Abraham took while he was still uncircumcised (v. 12).

Embracing the mantra “We have Abraham as our father” does not validate a Jew’s irrational rejection of the gospel’s offer of justification by faith in the faith; it destroys it. Abraham is “the father of all who believe” (Romans 4:11), i.e., of those “who walk in the steps of the faith” which Abraham took (Romans 4:12).

Being made in God’s image (Genesis 1:26-27) and loving God with all your mind (Matthew 22:37) necessitates the proper use of our innate ability to be rational creatures. Such is not contradictory to faith; it is conducive to the faith which pleases God (Hebrews 11:6).

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Author: jchowning

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