Is Christianity based on blind faith?
"While sitting in a coffee shop reading C. S. Lewis's Mere Christianity, I put down the book and wrote in my notebook, 'the evidence surrounding the claims of Christianity is simply overwhelming.' I realized that my achievements were ultimately unsatisfying, the approval of man is fleeting, that a carpe diem life lived solely for adventure is just a form of narcissism and idolatry. And so I became a believer in Christ." (Kevin, New York City, from the book The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism, by Timothy Keller.)
Man, of all the creatures, has the capacity to contemplate ultimate reality. French mathematician and philosopher Blaise Pascal (1623-1662) said this: "I only know that on leaving this world I fall into nothingness or into the hands of a wrathful God, without knowing to which of these two states I shall be everlastingly consigned." Modern theologian William Lane Craig (resource list) adds, "Man's condition ought to impel him to seek to discover whether there is a God and a solution to his predicament. But people occupy their time and their thoughts with trivialities and distractions, so as to avoid the despair, boredom, and anxiety that would inevitably result if those diversions were removed."
This website is all about using reason and evidence to examine ultimate things. First we will examine how faith fits into the use of reason and evidence in such exploration.
In one sense, we all operate every day on faith in many different areas of our lives. If you've ever eaten at a restaurant, accepted a doctor's prescription, or planned for the future, you have certainly been operating on a degree of faith, that in fact, may be a bit blind.
As C. S. Lewis said (see resource list), most of the things you believe are believed on authority, secondary evidence, etc. For example, you may never have actually seen a molecule, but you have no doubt that molecules exist. Even more to the point, we are confident that things like gravity, time, the laws of logic, and true love exist even though we cannot see them. Of course, experience and rational investigation should increase your confidence in what is true.
Even the atheist has faith. The atheist has faith that the world exploded into existence but nobody caused it. Philosopher William Lane Craig explains the faith of atheism further in thos one-minute video clip:
The issue is not faith. Everyone has a faith—atheist, agnostic, or Christian. And everyone places something at their personal pinnacle of importance. The real issue is what is a worthy object of our faith and our affection, and what parameters or limits one places on his examinations of truth. For example, here are some things that atheists may worship, that is, to place above all else: (1) Naturalism, which is the dedication to the natural world to the exclusion of any supernatural things, science being the New Sacred, (2) Statism, which is elevating government to the position of highest authority, (3) Mother Earthism, which can manifest itself as radical environmentalism to the exclusion of people, (4) Liberalism/Libertarianism, which are differnt versions of attempts to establish the autonomy of self, or simply (5) the unexamined hatred of Christianity, which could be shunning the possibility that one could be judged by a higher authority. This last one is a mark of the vocal "new atheism" movement, and is characterized by a dangerous intolerance.
In this section of our website we will show that Christianity is reasonable and rational, that it is logically consistent, that it fits the evidence, and that it is relevant for modern man. We will demonstrate that nobody rejects Christianity for lack of evidence. And we hope to clear up a few common misconceptions about Christianity.
Christianity is not mere blind faith. As emphasized by theologian D. James Kennedy, the claim that belief in Christianity produces an irrational, uneducated, unintelligent, or unintellectual view of life is completely false. And the statement that unbelief produces a rational and intelligent and enlightened view of the universe is equally false.
Blind faith is faith without evidence, which would be superstition. The Bible does not call us to blind faith. The Bible calls us to faith in evidence. We submit that various truth claims, including Christianity, should be evaluated on the evidence.
We do not ask the inquirer to accept the claims of Christianity to be proven to an absolute certaintly, such as is only possible in purely formal analytics such as mathematics. We ask you to consider Christianity based on the standards of a court of law: the preponderance of the evidence, or the even higher standard of beyond a reasonable doubt.
Yes, there will always be a step of faith for the Christian. But that step doesn't require a person to leave his brains at the church door.
This is an invitation to those who are not Christians to look into truth, not religion. To ask questions like: How would I recognize the truth if I saw it? What would it take to convince me that Christianity is true?
Note to the skeptic who is willing to delve into religion based on reason and evidence: Human beings have imperfect knowledge. There are always things outside the realm of our experience. So we often base our perception of things on assumptions or "presuppositions," either consciously or unconsciously. But we must be careful not to become prisoners of our preconceptions. There is always the possibility that some new information could overturn our previous ideas. Through the various articles on this website, we challenge you to examine your presuppositions and invite you to challenge us as well!
Our pre-suppositions can be self-destructive! One is at risk of having built a house on sand. When the rains of existence come down, the house may not stand. We argue that you may have claimed the right to judge the rationality and morality of things. But consider that apart from God you cannot make any of your claims stick beyond your own subjective state. This is so because you cannot explain rationality itself. Why do the laws of logic seem to work? Who says so? Why do we all have moral ideas about right and wrong and the desire to impose them? Why do we expect nature to act uniformly? The skeptic cannot provide a satisfactory explanation for the "why" of the most basic "laws," the very criteria he wants to impose. He has to admit that either he made them up or that he accepts them on the authority of other finite creatures.
The Christian, however, asserts that God has spoken to us—that deep down we know this, and that God has explained these most basic laws and criteria. God has not told us everything there is to know, but He has told us enough with which to navigate existence. We are suggesting the bold claim that the unbeliever has nothing to stand on.When the unbeliever uses logic against Christianity, he implicitly acknowledges a God who grants us logic! The believer has at his disposal every datum of the universe—even things as "unlikely" as evil and suffering—because Christianity provides the only satisfactory explanation for this data. (Source: Mike Osborne.)
Perhaps you have never seen a reasoned, logical explanation of Christianity. Stand by to be challenged...