December 5, 2008

Faith and Reason

This semester at seminary is winding down, one week of classes to go, then finals. And a quiet and Merry Christmas to be enjoyed by all (or at least by me).

Doing some final reading and listening to the last few lectures and one theme has been rolling around in my head, faith and reason. I am reading Fides Et Ratio - On the Relationship between Faith and Reason, an Encyclical Letter written by John Paul II. In class we are reviewing Christianity and the Nature of Science by J P Moreland.

Both hold similar theses. Faith and reason are not incompatible nor contradictory. In fact you use your reasoning to understand your faith. Similar to the saying by Anselm that I bloggd on earlier, "Credo Ut Intellegam".

In discussing Moreland we are even getting into how science relies on faith, just faith in different things than a faith in God. (I will not get into things like making an enumerative induction argument to prove a natural law, which requires some element of faith since the certainty of your argument is not absolute)

I like the fact that everything requires a level of faith even before we use our reasoning, as Jesus taught faith in Him is the right approach, then I can use my reasoning to understand what my faith has already come to know.

It just seems to be the right order of things.


Anonymous said...

I've always been intrigued by the relationship between faith and reason. When I first read Mere Christianity (many many many years ago), the thing that Lewis helped me see most clearly was the reasonableness of faith.

Laurie M. said...

This brought to mind a quote I jotted down from a lecture I was listening to:

"God's truth doesn't insult our reason; but it often overwhelms it."

(Take the doctrine of the Trinity, for instance.)

Andy C said...

I think it is our reason that allows us to know what a great gift from God our faith truly is.