Trusting in Reason or Trusting in the Spirit?

By Gregory Koukl

Is it true that if one is trusting the Holy Spirit to do the work, then one is not using arguments?

Here was the objection I heard the other night about myself: “Greg Koukl is too rational and too logical, as opposed to trusting in the spirit.”

I can understand why somebody might say that, and maybe you have heard this objection raised to you as well. I do not like that characterization. I wish people would say that Koukl is a careful thinker. When you say he is rational and logical, it makes a person sound like a machine. Data in, data out. Click, click, he is a robot. He has no feelings about these things, certainly no feelings about God. And this is not a good description of me. I like to think of myself as careful and I like to encourage other people to be careful about what we think about God, but I can understand why people would say that.

But to add to that observation a further statement “you’re not trusting in the spirit” makes me wonder how they could ever know such a thing? Whether or not I am trusting the Spirit is a factor of my interior life that they have absolutely no access to whatsoever. You cannot see me trusting, can you? You might ask me, if you’re inclined to, but I would have to report that to you.

You say, wait a minute, Greg. We cannot see people’s thoughts. We cannot know their intentions, but we can infer them from actions, can’t we? Can’t we infer that a person is feeling angry by the actions that we see that person have? Can’t we infer that this person loves another person by the actions that he or she shows them? Can’t we draw inferences about internal states by external evidences? My answer is, of course you can. But then, I have another question with regards to this issue…

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