What Is the Relationship Between Faith and Reason? | Proof for God
What is the relationship between faith and reason? Webster’s dictionary says that, “Faith is a firm belief in something for which there is no proof.” The American Heritage Dictionary says that, “Faith is a belief that does not rest on logical or material evidence.” Is that true? Is that what faith really is? That’s what we’re told. In fact, what we’re told is that faith is contrasted with science. And we’re told that modern science is a belief that is solely based in experimental evidence and that faith is a warm, emotional, fuzzy feeling that somehow people hold, in spite of the evidence or lack of evidence and they just have it because their grandmother told them it was true or because it makes them feel good. But did you know that there are serious problems with this dichotomy between faith and reason and faith and evidence? The fact of the matter is, modern atheistic evolutionary science is not evidence-based and true faith actually is evidence-based. Atheist physicist Paul Davies made this statement: He said, “In science we are repeatedly told it’s the most reliable form of knowledge about the world because it’s based on testable hypotheses. Religion by contrast, is based on faith. The problem with this neat separation is that science has its own faith-based system. Clearly, then, both religion and science are founded on faith.” Harvard geneticist Richard Lewontin stated, “Our willingness to accept scientific claims against common sense is the key to an understanding of the the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of its patent absurdity of some of its constructs. For we cannot allow a divine foot in the door.” You see, the atheistic evolutionary based science that is purported to be based on facts and evidence and reasoning, well it’s not that. Here’s what I mean. According to atheistic evolution, at some point in the past, life arose from non-living chemicals. And yet, every single scientific experiment that has ever been done proves that that cannot be the case. Atheistic philosophy says that this universe had to arise from nothing. And that would violate the Law of Cause and Effect. Atheistic evolutionary teaching says that the life that supposedly came from non-living chemicals could change from a single-celled amoeba to multicellular bacteria and into all of the organisms in the world. That’s simply not scientific. You cannot find a place in nature where that is occurring and put your finger on it and say, “This is a scientific fact.” And so what Lewontin is saying and what Davies is saying is that it’s supposed, it’s stated that science and faith–or religion–are separate because science is based on evidence and faith is not. He says but that’s not true. Science is based on some things that you absolutely, positively cannot prove. And now when I say ‘science’ put evolutionary atheistic teaching in science. But now here’s what I would like to say. That real religion and true science are both evidence based systems. In fact, when you look at the Bible writers presenting the religion of Christianity, on numerous occasions they tried to make sure that we understood that the definition of faith was not holding something without evidence, was not a belief in something that we could not prove. In fact, it was the very opposite of that. Christianity is the belief in something for which you have evidence to validate the conclusion. Peter–one of Jesus’s closest followers–stated, “For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty.” You see, people were accusing the apostles of following myths and fairy tales and making up stories or following cunningly devised fables. And what was Peter’s solution? What was his answer? “No, we’re not. I have valid material evidence that proves what I’m saying. I was an eyewitness to Jesus’s life and His miracles and His actions.” Luke–the author of the book of Acts– wrote that when Jesus rose from the dead, “He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them for forty days.” You read that in Acts 1:3. Now the skeptic can try to assail the proofs that the Bible presents and that Christianity presents and say, “No, that’s not evidence and that’s not evidence,” although they will not succeed in that. But you cannot say honestly and legitimately that the faith of the Christian religion is something not based on evidence. When the early writers demanded that they weren’t writing cunningly devised fables and they weren’t presenting the resurrection of Christ without evidence. Paul–the author of almost half of the books in the New Testament–once stood before the Roman official Festus and he presented his case as to why he had faith in Jesus Christ. After listening to Paul’s case, Festus said to him, “Paul, you’re beside yourself. Much learning is driving you mad.” And Paul responded by saying, “I’m not mad, most noble Festus, but I speak the words of truth and reason.” Notice that Paul claimed to base his decisions to follow Jesus on truth –what really is actually the case– and reason–proper thinking about that truth. Jesus’s claims always were based on material evidence. He said, “I come and I’m explaining to you that I am God in the flesh, but you don’t have to believe Me just for My word and from My testimony. I do miracles that are evidence of My deity. The prophecies in the Old Testament that were written hundreds of years before I came, are evidence of My deity. There was a voice that came out of heaven that Peter–you heard– that James–you heard–that testifies to My deity. I’m going to die and rise again the third day. That’s going to testify to My deity.” You see, Jesus never said, “You need to believe in Me because of faith and that faith is not based on evidence.” He said, “You need to have faith in Me and that faith is looking at what is true, all of the evidence that’s available that proves I’m God and reasoning properly about that truth.” You know, while it is true many religious and scientific people hold beliefs by blind faith, that idea is completely foreign to the Bible. True faith requires that each person test all things and hold fast to what is good.