Come Let us Reason – Part 2 – What is Logic?
I am walking through the book “Come Let us Reason” by Norman Geisler and Ronald Brooks. We all can use these lessons.
“It is the function of the wise man to know order.” – Aristotle (As quoted on page 11).
The opening quote above should help us to think about Logic. Logic is the way of orderly and correct thought. Wise people take the time to wrestle through their thinking and correct the junk. Geisler and Brooks point out that most people get scared by the very word “Logic.” Yet, logic is used (knowingly or unknowingly) every day.
We order our thoughts about regular activities such as purchases and we order our thoughts and actions regarding various beliefs about the world that we live in or the movies that we watch. Many Christians I have run into have often made the point, whether clearly or clouded, that we do not need to think about our faith. What happens next is comical to me. They begin to share their beliefs with me about any given topic of doctrine (teaching) and think that they must be right.
What they have done is actively engaged their reasoning and tried to put forth a logical position. The only question is if they have done well. Numerous times a simple question or a counter-point can fold the house of cards regarding some beliefs that individuals hold. Our job as Christians is to take the time being honest with our beliefs. We should not take them because some slick preacher on television said so or because of some feeling.
Geisler and Brooks give this helpful definition of logic on page 12. “Logic is the study of right reason or valid inference” Or they simplify it and say, “Logic is a way to think so that we come to correct conclusions.” Moreover, logic helps us to figure out when one idea implies another idea. Very often Christians jump to unnecessary conclusion from the data that they have.
One of the nice things about studying logic is that there are helpful rules for thinking correctly as well as there are these things called fallacies. A fallacy is “a mistake in the way that we set up our thinking” (p. 12) Thus, if you know a number of the mistakes that others make, you can spend time vetting yours and others thoughts to see if they are true.
The final and simple definition finally given is, “Logic is the way to think so that we can come to correct conclusions by understanding implications and the mistakes people often make in thinking” (p. 13). All of us need logic!