Faith and Reason Are Enemies? Not Even Close!
by Tom Gilson
“Reason is the enemy of faith.” Atheists love that phrase. Unfortunately they’re not the only ones who use it. Some churches actually teach that reason is opposed to belief in God. I’ve heard about it mostly from people who grew up in those churches. “Just believe,” they’ve been told. “We don’t ask questions around here.” Most of the people I’ve met who had that experience in church are no longer interested in Jesus Christ.
It’s a strange stance for a church to take. The pastor who says, “Reason is the enemy of faith,” has got to expect someone to ask him why he thinks so. If he explains his reasoning he’s contradicting himself right there.
He’s got the same problem if he answers in terms of some Bible passage, say, Col. 2:8. It says, “See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.” Does that say we should avoid all logic and reasoning? Should we even avoid all philosophy? Or should we just avoid empty, deceitful reasoning? These are all valid questions to ask such a pastor. In order to answer, he’s going to have to explain his reasons for opposing reasoning…