The principles of right reasoning

Is Christianity Irrational?

Is the Christian faith illogical? Critics allege this of course. But surprisingly, many Christians also say that biblical faith is illogical, contrary to reason, and yet that we should hold to it anyway. Some would say that faith by its very nature is contrary to reason. Others would say that the core principles of the Bible defy logic: principles such as loving your enemies, that Jesus is both God and man, that we should rejoice in being persecuted for Christ’s sake, and so on. How are we to handle such claims?

Logic: Our Moral Obligation

A thorough knowledge of logic can be immensely helpful in our own reasoning, or when reasoning with others. But in addition to any pragmatic advantage, we have a moral obligation to be logical. Thinking rightly is not optional for the Christian. It is something God requires of us.

Logic: The Importance of Definitions

One of the most important tools in logical reasoning is a dictionary. Correct reasoning requires that we use words properly – according to their meaning. Failure to use words correctly often results in miscommunication, but it can also result in errors in reasoning.

Logic: Enthymemes

An enthymeme is an argument in which one of the premises or the conclusion is not explicitly stated. Usually, this is because the unstated claim is obvious. Enthymemes are perfectly acceptable if used properly. But sometimes, they can be used incorrectly to draw a false conclusion. So, understanding enthymemes can be extremely useful in apologetics.

The Biblical Basis for the Laws of Logic

Laws of logic are the rules of correct reasoning. They reflect the way God thinks and the way we must think if we are to think correctly. Laws of logic are also called “rules of inference.” Correct reasoning can never violate a law of logic. There are many laws of logic. But three are considered the most basic or primary.

The Failure of Unbiblical Worldviews to Justify Laws of Logic

We saw previously that the Bible can make sense of laws of logic and their properties, and that the three laws of thought are rooted in the nature of God. However, non-biblical worldviews cannot make sense of laws of logic or their properties.