Deductive Reasoning

One thing that surfaces in almost all discussions I have with atheists is that they contrast faith and reason. Christians don’t, and logically the two should not be pitted against one another. Rather, the opposite of faith is unbelief.

Jesus identified “witnesses” to His identity as Messiah. In John 5 He named the following as witnesses: John the Baptist, the works that He did (such as feeding 5000 with a few loaves and fish, healing lepers, casting out demons, stopping a storm with a word, raising a dead man, and others), the Scriptures (specifically Moses’s writing), and the Father Himself.

The author of the book of Acts starts out by saying this about the resurrection of Christ: “To these [the apostles] He also presented Himself alive after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God.”

I could go on, but the point should be clear: God never intended people to check their brains at the door and enter into some kind of “against all reason” state in order to believe. Quite the opposite. In fact, the first five books of the Bible are history. They include genealogies and place names and natural events and historical figures that would anchor the circumstances in time for the people who lived then.

And for those of us who were not alive at the time? How are we to know that these things really happened? There are a number of tools we can use: science (much to the dismay of those who embrace scientism, or a belief in only natural phenomenon—I’ll go into this in more depth in another post), archaeology, prophecy, the unity of Scripture.

The point is this: all history has been pieced together, and the events of the Bible are no different. Some things have not been verified by some extra-Biblical source, but some things, like the resurrection, which could have easily been demonstrated to be false, has no record of such—only accounts of witnesses.

The real problem is that some approach the Bible with a bias against the supernatural. That’s scientism, not science. Science would come to the issue with an open mind, not with an assumption that the supernatural does not exist.

And yet, time and again, “experts” who oppose the Bible admit that they simply do not entertain the possibility that what they cannot see does in fact exist.

The double irony is that those same people claim that the universe came from . . . they know not where or how. But definitely not from God.

This is where deductive reasoning comes in. When someone is piecing together evidence in order to determine the truth of a matter, all the facts are considered and the most reasonable explanation is the one left standing. In other words, by eliminating the things that are not possible or reasonable, the actually can be determined.

One article that addressed the issue of the reasonableness of the universe coming into being on its own includes this statement:

A system requiring such a high degree of order could never happen by chance. This follows from the fact that probability theory only applies to systems with a finite possibility of occurring at least once in the universe, and it would be inconceivable that 10(158) different trials could ever be made in our entire space-time universe.

Astro-physicists estimate that there are no more than 10(80) infinitesimal “particles” in the universe, and that the age of the universe in its present form is no greater than 1018 seconds (30 billion years). Assuming each particle can participate in a thousand billion (10 [12]) different events every second (this is impossibly high, of course), then the greatest number of events that could ever happen (or trials that could ever be made) in all the universe throughout its entire history is only 10(80) x 10(18) x 10(12), or 10(110) (most authorities would make this figure much lower, about 10[50]). Any event with a probability of less than one chance in 10(110), therefore, cannot occur. Its probability becomes zero, at least in our known universe. (“Probability and Order versus Evolution”)

The thing about numbers, they can be massaged and manipulated to say pretty much anything. But deductive reasoning is not so easily fooled. Does life come from non-life? I have never heard of that occurring. Do matter and energy come from nothing? That postulation doesn’t seem reasonable. Does intelligence come from non-thinking? That hardly seems possible—how could something lacking intelligence even conceive of intelligence, much less come up with a way to develop it. To think that the intelligence was a mere quirk, a mutation, is perhaps as great an improbability.

In short, without going into much depth, deductive reasoning says there has to be something or Someone who brought about the universe. It simply is not credible to believe it manufactured itself.

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Published in: on May 15, 2018 at 6:42 pm  Comments (19)  
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  1. It’s true, many who believe evolution won’t admit that it, too, is a religion. It takes faith to believe in the Christian view of creation and it takes faith to believe in “billions of years ago…”

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is absolute rubbish. If you are going to make things up at least make it half sensible. Please look up “religion” in a dictionary.

      You obviously do not understand evolution because you would know there are tons of evidence to support biological evolution. Evolution is accepted by most of the economically advanced countries and only rejected of course by Muslim people and those who believe in talking snakes.

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  2. “Science would come to the issue with an open mind, not with an assumption that the supernatural does not exist.”

    Becky, science, so every Christian keeps telling me cannot be used to determine if the supernatural exists. And I agree, science does not poor funds or time into the supernatural because science is limited to explaining the natural world by means of natural processes, it cannot use supernatural causation in its explanations. Similarly, science is precluded from making statements about supernatural forces because these are outside its provenance.

    “The double irony is that those same people claim that the universe came from . . . they know not where or how. But definitely not from God.”

    When you consider what science has discovered today and understand about quantum mechanics, 60 years of modern space exploration, gravity, black holes, the time and space complexity, ground breaking Biological Discoveries such as evolution, the Human Genome Project and cloning, this all comes together in natural science without any creator magic and strongly emphasises there is a scientific answer to everything, including the beginning of the universe and life on Earth.

    “Do matter and energy come from nothing? That postulation doesn’t seem reasonable.”

    Yes, it does. Albert Einstein was the first person to realize that empty space or something you cannot see is not nothing. Space has amazing properties, many of which are just beginning to be understood. We know how much dark energy there is because we know how it affects the universe’s expansion.

    “deductive reasoning says there has to be something or Someone who brought about the universe. It simply is not credible to believe it manufactured itself.”

    When you consider what science has bought to mankind over the last 150 years, some of which I have already mentioned earlier in this comment there is so much logic, more deductive reasoning and credibility in real scientific answers rather than the non-evidential Biblical supernatural causes.

    Becky you have actually quoted an “Institute of Creation Research” publication that along with a young Earth ideology is rejected by the scientific community and you thought you may have bought credibility to your argument, but I am afraid not.

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  3. Becky, you wrote this basically, but I can’t help but notice when the militant atheists talk about origins….they never put forth a viable alternative. Just so long as it’s not God. Although one near and dear to you said alien implantation was a more viable alternative than God.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. That is true Wally, the chances of a meteorite striking the Earth billions of years ago with a living cell or the elements that were required to produce one is thought to be quite realistic by scientists (not creationists).

    Of course there are also more sightings of UFO’s than there is of your God, and that makes little green men also more credible than any gods.

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    • Steve, thanks for the back up. You have made my point finely and I have no further need to add to it.

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      • Glad to see you agree with the credibility rankings here Wally.

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  5. Faith and logic always go hand in hand. For example, reason will tell you that a simple chair has been carefully constructed, but you must put faith in its builder–enough faith to sit down in it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Faith for theists is a strong belief in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual conviction rather than proof.

      Logic for me is reasoning conducted or assessed according to strict principles of validity.

      These do not exist hand in hand or mean the same thing, your faith is based only on conviction that is a firmly held belief or opinion, whereas logic is based on validity that is the quality of being logically or factually sound; soundness or cogency.

      Faith for me is complete trust or confidence in someone or something such as a regular event such as the sun rising in the morning or the postman will deliver the mail.

      I may have trust or faith in the builder to carefully construct a chair, but I would only after assessing the chair come to the conclusion that my trust was justifiable and valid therefore based on this reasoning it is a logical conclusion that the chair is constructed strong enough to sit in.

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      • Steve, you really shouldn’t comment about things you don’t know or understand. Since YOU don’t have faith in the existence of God or the reliability of Scripture, you are being very presumptuous to say what Christians who claim faith do or don’t base our faith on. I’m sure you read your definitions somewhere, and I’m not saying that some religious people don’t rely on the type of faith you outlined, but NOT CHRISTIANS.

        First and foremost our faith is in a Person, the Lord Jesus Christ. In that regard, what you said about trust would more nearly mirror the faith of a Christian than that high-sounding jargon about firmly held belief or opinion.

        But you would know that, I think, if you’d ever read the Bible. Or listened to Christians, rather than filter everything through your mantra “brainwashed” that you must have read somewhere.

        I’m sorry. I’m not feeling real well right now—just a routine cold I must endure—and I’m afraid it has made me want to cut to the chase without any fluff.

        Becky

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      • Okay. Christians actually put their faith in proof. Granted, not every Christian is knowledgeable of all the proof that is out there, but what they believe has already been proven.

        I believe in Jesus Christ, not because my parents told me, not because it feels good and not because it gives me a peace of mind. My faith in the bible is grounded on it’s authenticity. Jesus was a real person who did real miracles, so it’s obvious that he’s not from this world, therefore I believe he is who he says he is.

        As I’m sure you already know, truth is truth. It doesn’t need you to believe in it or have faith in it. Truth will be truth in spite of one’s opinions and feelings.

        I respect the desire to investigate and to get to the bottom line. Here’s the funny thing about proof though: it does not dictate someone’s faith. You can do research for years and still feel like you’re missing something. You can have all the proof in the world and still choose not to believe.

        We do this all the time. Let’s say I told you your best friend died (just an example, I’m not wishing bad things for you). Initially, you’re probably not going to believe me. The first thing you’re gonna do is ask questions, you might even call this friend directly. And let’s say you come to find out that your besties is actually dead. Now, the fact that you investigated and asked all those questions doesn’t changed the fact that what I was telling you was the truth in the first place.

        This is what the bible is for Christians. It makes claims for us to study and examine. The Bible has been investigated over a million times through out the centuries and even though many Christians don’t launch their own personal investigations, they still believe. That doesn’t mean that they are stupid or naiive, it just means that they have…. faith.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thanks for your response.

          “You can have all the proof in the world and still choose not to believe.”

          It is a fact that the scientific evidence against any gods existing is quite overwhelming, however it means very little in this world of tradition and superstition.

          “even though many Christians don’t launch their own personal investigations, they still believe. That doesn’t mean that they are stupid or naiive, it just means that they have…. faith.”

          I guess it just boils down to what level of evidence is acceptable for each of us. I have always turned over every stone where I can, and I find absolutely nothing I could embrace in any of the religions, however I find certain people would not want to investigate or even care because they rely on and need their religion and a God for personal reasons and to a large degree the word “faith” suits them just fine.

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          • I completely understand that. Religion can be very misleading and some aspects I find ridiculous. From my research and personal experience in the faith, the inherent value comes from having a relationship with God. That may seem like an odd concept to unbelievers, but essentially our faith rests upon having a connection with God.

            Some of the religious practice may help lead up to and even sustain that connection, but the practices themselves are not what create that connection.

            Side note: Jesus was against tradition because it blinded people from the faith was all about.

            I don’t know what you’ve seen or studied. I, myself, have spent many years looking at different religions and doctrines, looking at both sides of the fence. And you’re right, at the end of the day it all comes down to one’s personal convictions. We believe what we want to believe.

            Liked by 1 person

    • Absolutely true! Thanks for the illustration.

      Becky

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      • Sorry to hear you have a cold. I used what are English dictionary meanings and I completely understand that many Americans simply do not understand real English terms as you often make up your own rules, and this is one brilliant example. I thought you were a published writer, what dictionary do you use? I hope you are well soon Becky.

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        • Thanks for your compassionate thoughts, Steve.

          I use the Oxford American dictionary, but when it comes to matters of faith, anyone compiling a dictionary—any dictionary—isn’t going to isolate the difference in Christianity and other religious beliefs. So they simply aren’t adequate.

          Becky

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          • I think this is a case of making up your own rules to fit your ideology and your own emotional feelings Becky. Being a writer, you must understand the implications of this.

            The first English dictionary was written by Robert Cawdrey, a schoolmaster and former Church of England clergyman, in 1604. The English language is very expressive having been created from many languages, it is not biased in any way and has the words to describe all things more than adequately.

            I realise the words you use for your faith do not mean what you want and expose your faith for what it really is, “simply faith” therefore maybe you should take heed of this fact.

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          • Again, Steve, I find it amazing that you think you who claims you have no faith can tell me who lives by faith what that actually means.

            Maybe if you would read “trust” in place of faith you’d have a much better idea. Christians are actually using the first definition offered by the Oxford American Dictionary: “complete trust or confidence in someone or something.” We do not ascribe to the number 2 definition that atheists want to pigeonhole our faith in. It only tells part of what Christians believe and is wrong as far as the other part goes.

            But apparently you atheists know better than we do what our faith is.

            Becky

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  6. […] I wrote “The Early Church and Problems” back in July. Before that I wrote “Deductive Reasoning” back in May. A month earlier I wrote “Daniel’s Prophecies—Evidence That The Bible […]

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