Come Let Us Reason – Objections to Logic – Part 3
I am walking through the book “Come Let us Reason” by Norman Geisler and Ronald Brooks. Enjoy!
“Simply put, you can’t avoid studying logic, so you might as well know what you’re doing. It is the basis for all other studies” (p. 13). As the authors point out, “The only way to avoid logic is to quit thinking, because logic is the basis for all thought.”
Objections to Logic:
There are many kinds of logic? This is true in the sense that there are many forms such as Aristotelian or Boolean etc. But, the laws of logic are the same across those fields. The great thinkers of the past did not invent logic, they merely discovered how correct thought worked (p. 13). Once you know the laws, they apply to all thinking.
People are not logical. Why bother? C.S. Lewis once wrote that good philosophy must exist if for no other reason than bad philosophy does. Thus, good thought is necessary, even more so in a world where bad thought is so easy and practiced. The authors also make a parallel point that often people are not moral, but that has not stopped Christians from working hard for morality (p. 14). We should be logical so we can discover the truth.
Logic doesn’t work. People do not respond to it. The authors who are writing this book clearly do not believe this. In fact, Brooks even came to Christ shortly after reading Aristotle. Christianity seemed all the more accurate after his studies of the great logician. I myself have been deeply impacted by books on reasoning and philosophy (Check out William Lane Craig from www.reasonablefaith.org ). In reality, most Christians have been affected by these works. Anyone who has confessed or adhered to the great Creeds has been borrowing from the correct thought of the first few centuries of Christianity. If it worked for the early Christians, we are not in a place to avoid it now.
Not everything is subject to Logic. This objection is easily agreeable, as expressions of emotion or aesthetics are not subject to logic (p. 14). But, that misses the point of logic, logic is about evaluating concepts and ideas. Therefore, one cannot run away from it.
Logic is contrary to human intuitions. This is not totally true. Intuition is still evaluated by logic if it has made a public claim (p. 15).
The biggest objection: Logic does not apply to God or the mysteries of the Christian faith.
This is actually false. I have heard it time and time again as a Pastor and a layman. First, logic is being used in objecting (p. 15). A person is trying to logically make clear that there are some things about God that cannot be logically discussed. I think they fail in this respect, but we should not let the covers be pulled over our eyes. Just like any study or “ology,” theology is the “logic of God” (p. 15). When we talk about theology or we try to bring various verses together that weigh into the same subject, we are participating in logic.
The whole history of Theology (from Theos-God and Logos – Logic/study) assumes the presence of logic. All of the great councils and debates had the presence of logic. If the leaders of the church were going to lead well, they were going to have to offer correct teaching about God. That is why the very concepts such as God being a Trinity or Jesus being truly God and truly Man, were largely done wrestling with the data of Scripture but with the tools of correct thought (logic).
Objections are overcome. 🙂