Today the body of Christians at home and abroad faces immense opposition from those who would deny the Lord Jesus. Many of these fronts come in the form of physical aggression, apathy, etc., but I would like to hone in on one of the most devastating weaknesses in our church today. The body of believers as a whole is simply not thinking critically or acting consistently with the central tenets of the Christian faith.
What Good Logic Does
The modern Christian has many leaders to defend the faith, such as William Lane Craig, Ravi Zacharias, Lee Strobel, and more. Good logic promotes the pursuit of truth and the defense of right thinking. Many people come up with different ideas about Christ and Christianity, quite often based on personal opinion and second hand reports. What good logic will do is make plain the claims made in the Bible and other sources so that they can be examined and the truth can be determined.
“In coming to understand anything we are rejecting the facts as they are for us in favor of the facts as they are.”
C.S. Lewis – An Experiment in Criticism
It will lay plain the borders of any worldview against truth so that hearts and minds may be changed. This is a powerful tool in the hands of apologists and the local believer. What we see most often are the debates had between giants of the faith and well regarded atheists. What we don’t often see is the everyday interaction between people on opposing sides of the cubicle wall reflecting where we often stand on matters of eternal significance.
What Bad Logic Does
Down in the trenches, we as lay Christians don’t often have the same breadth of perspective as our giants do. We are often found in offices, our homes, in traffic, at dinner, etc., consumed with the needs of the day, far more subject to our emotions and desires than we would allow ourselves to be on stages against leading atheists. The lay Christian simply is not trained to handle the high demands of reason from their fellow man. When a lay Christian is pressed for evidence, one of two routes is usually taken: admit that they don’t know and leave the questioner wanting, or declare the truth as true and proclaim dogma. The first way will turn off a seeker because they were not satisfied by one of God’s people with the Bible that promises to lead us to the One that fulfills all our heart and soul. This will lead to the fallacies of Appeal to Ignorance, Argument from Silence, or even to Shifting the Burden of Proof. The second way leads the seeker to be offended by the Christian. The fallacies here include Winning the Argument but Losing the Arguer, Appeal to Illegitimate Authority, and Appeal to Force.
To put things plainly, when we cannot reasonably answer the criticisms given by our atheist neighbors, Christ is taken as foolishness and we as the royal fools. It’s up to us as Christians to learn and grow so that we may, with Paul, “[be] prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks [us] for a reason for the hope that is in [us]; yet do it with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15 ESV).
Blake Moore graduated in 2013 from Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas with a B.A. in Philosophy. His experience in teaching has come from tutoring students in mathematics, from developmental math to graduate level statistics, as well as chemistry, physics, test prep, and introductory programming. He has also taught camps for video game building and chess. Blake and his family of three live in Cypress, Texas. His favorite subjects to study are logic, math, and the Bible. He loves to cook as well, having won “Hottest Chili” in local competitions for five years running now. His favorite weather is a sweltering summer’s day and his favorite environment is the peaceful outdoors, preferably on the lake or in the woods. His classes with Excelsior include Intro to Java Programming, Game Design I, and Logic.