Archive for the ‘doubt’ Category

Young Christians are by and by, like their Master led into the wilderness

December 7, 2009

Young Christians are by and by, like their Master led into the wilderness…At this time we think that we are not God’s child, that we are not justified nor pardoned, that we are mistaken with ourselves…After the devil has tried us thus for a season, he then assaults us with evil imaginations and blasphemous thoughts, doubts about the authority of the holy Scriptures, scruples about the divinity of our Saviour…At these times we are apt to reason with ourselves, saying, Surely we are not born again; surely we are not Sons of God, for if we were, why are we thus?

William Grimshaw, quoted in Faith Cook, Fearless Pilgrim: The Life and Times of John Bunyan, Evangelical Press, 2008, p.485-6, n.24

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science is not religion and it doesn’t just come down to faith. Although it has many of religion’s virtues, it has none of its vices. Science is based upon verifiable evidence

October 4, 2009

…science is not religion and it doesn’t just come down to faith. Although it has many of religion’s virtues, it has none of its vices. Science is based upon verifiable evidence. Religious faith not only lacks evidence, its independence from evidence is its pride and joy, shouted from the rooftops. Why else would Christians wax critical of doubting Thomas? The other apostles are held up to us as exemplars of virtue because faith was enough for them. Doubting Thomas, on the other hand, required evidence. Perhaps he should be the patron saint of scientists.

Richard Dawkins,

Is Science a Religion?,

the Humanist, January/February 1997

1. But the other apostles did have evidence. They saw Jesus’ miracles, the empty tomb, his resurrection, hte testimony of others to the same events.

2. Thomas was not criticised because he asked for evidence. He was criticised for lacking faith when he had so much evidence. He had the testimony of the other 10 apostles; he had seen Jesus’ miracles; he had heard the testimony of the empty tomb etc.

3. Science does rest on faith: faith in induction, a uniform, ordered, law-governed universe, uniformitarianism, the reliability of the senses, the reliability and credibility of scientists etc. Dawkins overlooks these ‘minor’ matters.

Doubt

July 31, 2009
If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts he shall end in certainties.
Sir Francis Bacon
English author, courtier, & philosopher (1561 – 1626)

The key is to doubt received wisdom, untested assumptions and human tradition. The Scriptures give a source of eternal and infinite wisdom as a rule for all human speculations.