I wanted to share this with you. Christianity is for Weak, Stupid People? - The Role of Reason for Christians by Rich Deem IntroductionMany skeptics think that Christianity is for people who do not want to think. Christians are often characterized as people who believe whatever they are told by the church. Faith is thought of as something that one believes blindly - with no supporting evidence. However, this viewpoint does not represent biblical Christianity. In contrast, to what many skeptics believe, the Bible challenges its readers to test it and come to a reasonable conclusion. There are those Christians who believe blindly, and certain cults (such as Mormonism) teach that truth can be known through prayer. These ideas are heretical to biblical Christianity and often lead to deception, making such individuals susceptible to conversion by the cults. Test everything. Hold on to the good. (1 Thessalonians 5:21) What does the Bible teach?Contrary to what many non-believers think, the Bible does not teach blind faith. In fact, the Bible actually tells believers to test everything.1 No other "holy" book tells its readers to actually put what it says to the test. The Bible can make such a statement because it passes the tests of truthfulness that no other "holy" book can. God Himself in His revelation to Isaiah stated, "Come now, and let us reason together..."2 God, the Creator of humans and human reasoning ability3 wants us to use that ability to determine His plan of salvation. How do we determine if the Bible is true? We test it and see if it is reasonable. Psalm 19 tells us that the universe "declares the glory of God" and that this "voice goes out into all the earth."4 This site is dedicated to showing how the universe declares God's love and design. In fact, the Bible says that the evidence for God's design of the universe is so strong that people are "without excuse" in rejecting God and His plan of salvation.5 The importance of the mind in the life of believers and non-believers The Bible encourages people to use their minds. In fact, the Bible says that God created humans and endowed them with a mind so that they would use it.6 The Bible says that God and Jesus Christ will test the minds (as well as the hearts) of people.7 One of the most important prophecies to Christianity, the prophecy of the New Covenant,8 fulfilled in the coming of the Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth,9 describes the changes God does in both the heart and the mind of those who are transformed.10 The Bible says that those who do not believe do so, in part, because of deception in their minds.11 This deception leads to hostility to God and defiling of their minds and consciences.12 The mind is also very important in the life of a Christian. The Christian is encouraged to set his "mind on the things above."13 We are also encouraged to direct our "mind to know, to investigate, and to seek wisdom and an explanation."14 Christians should use their minds in all aspects of life15 and "always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have."16 We are to use our minds to experience the reality of the Holy Spirit in order to experience His peace.17 This peace of God, "which surpasses all comprehension" guards both our hearts and our minds.18 Even the act of worship (both prayer and singing) should involve both the spirit and the mind.19 The mind of the prudent acquires knowledge, And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge. (Proverbs 18:15) The Bible encourages people to acquire knowledge The book of Proverbs in the Old Testament gives practical advice for living, raising children, and making good choices versus bad choices. Many of the verses discuss the importance of acquiring knowledge and wisdom,20 even to the degree of choosing knowledge over riches.21 Faith is of utmost importance to the Christian. But the Bible doesn't say to limit your belief to faith alone. In fact, it commands us to add first moral excellence then second knowledge.22 Daniel, one of the greatest examples of faith, who had an amazing prayer life, was also a man of great knowledge and intelligence, and used this ability to witness to Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon.23 Solomon, in his prayers to God, asked for wisdom and knowledge, both of which God granted to him.24 Biblical faith is based upon knowledge and sound doctrine God wants believers to be knowledgeable, especially regarding their faith. A lack of knowledge leads to apostasy and destruction, as God Himself said to Hosea, "My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge."25 A zeal for God is not sufficient to please Him, since many Jews have this zeal, although it is misplaced since it is "not in accordance with knowledge."26 The Bible encourages believers to have a knowledge-based faith, built upon sound biblical doctrine.27 When Paul preached the gospel, he did it through reasoning from the scriptures and not an appeal to blind faith.28 Paul, in his letters told believers to do away with childish thinking and reasoning.29 Christians are advised to set an example for others in teaching by modeling "integrity, seriousness, and soundness of speech."30 The physician Luke, in his prologue to his gospel revealed that he determined the truth through careful investigation: ...it seemed fitting for me as well, having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write it out for you in consecutive order, most excellent Theophilus; so that you might know the exact truth about the things you have been taught. (Luke 1:3-4) Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'" (Matthew 22:37)31 What did Jesus teach?Jesus extended the first of the ten commandments to love the Lord not only with our hearts and souls,32 but also our minds.33 Jesus almost always taught using parables and examples. He did this specifically so that people would think about what He was saying. In fact, in many instances, Jesus would ask people what they thought of what He said.34 When Jesus was resurrected from the dead, he explained the scriptures to his disciples and "opened their minds" so that they could see how He fulfilled the messianic prophecies.35 Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD (Isaiah 1:18)36 Conclusion The Bible teaches a rational faith, based upon knowledge and refined through testing. Christians are encouraged to use their minds in all aspects of life, including our spiritual life - prayer and worship. God values truthfulness to a high degree and wants us to know the truth about his creation, the nature of His being and His scriptures. Ultimately, God wants all people to come to the knowledge of the truth of His salvation through Jesus Christ,37 so that they may spend eternity with Him in the new creation. This is the best explanation I have seen.