The Discerning Christian

Author: Jonathunder; used under GNU Free Documentation License. Author: Jonathunder; used under GNU Free Documentation License.

The odd collection of nouns in the title are related. I promise. Roll with the idea and examine a few related scenarios. If you’ll track with me, I hope you’ll see some inconsistent ways in which we use our reason when religion, especially our interpretation of Scripture, gets involved. In most cases, we apply our reasoning freely — unless we have prior commitments, which cause us to set aside otherwise-sound conclusions in favor of sticking to our guns.

Suppose it is 300 years ago, and there is a European expedition heading into Africa. It has been several centuries, if not longer, since Europeans have ventured beyond the African cities on the Mediterranean coastline. No one quite knows what all lives in the interior of the continent, so this group of explorers sets out to learn about this mysterious land. As…

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