Thursday, April 7, 2011
Faith vs Reason
Actually, there should be no conflict between faith and reason, if only each enduement functions appropriately. Reason is a gift of God, the crown of manhood and the principle in man to which God Himself appeals (Isaiah 1:18). Faith is also a gift of God (Ephesians 2:8). So when he endowed man with these dual qualities, He never meant there to be any inherent antagonism between them. They were designed to co-operate and be mutually helpful, but sin has separated them. Reason is the eye of the soul, and faith is the eye of the spirit. “Faith which is irrational is irreligious: reason which is unbelieving is illogical.”
Faith does not contradict reason, but rises superior to it. What reason cannot understand, faith accepts. Faith is not subject to reason, seeing it rises into the realms of the unseen where reason cannot follow. Man, with all his God-given reasoning powers, cannot find God out, but faith accepts Him as a living, bright reality. Faith trusts God where reason cannot trace Him. Reason argues from things seen that there must be an unseen realm. Faith enters that unseen world and endures as seeing Him who is invisible. The Christian walks by faith, not by sight (Colossians 2:16; II Corinthians 5:7). “Sight” here means form, external appearance, and is the opposite of faith (Hebrews 11:1; Romans 6:24,25), by which “we know,” and “we have” (II Corinthians 5:1). “Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet believe.” (John 20:29). Reason may ratify the conclusions of faith, but it cannot override them. ...
Faith, then, rises into the sphere where God is all and in all and in which He moves and rules without limitation of godless reasoning. Reason is full of “whys” and “wherefores.” Faith, on the other hand, asks no questions. It takes God at His Word. In the realm of truth it is not what do reason and experience say, but what does God say, that counts, and faith rests in the assurance that there is nothing too hard for Him.
Herbert Lockyer, All the Doctrines of the Bible, p. 197