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The Vision — If We Will Live

“Where there is no vision the people perish”
-Proverbs 29:18

This blog is about looking to Scripture to find out who God is, why we worship him, and how we flourish. It’s about what we must do, if we will live.

Was Thomas’s Doubt Reasonable?

“Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

Was he right to say this? Thomas didn’t tell us his epistemology. We don’t even know his attitude as he said those words. I suspect he was trembling, not indignant.

Was Thomas being reasonable? It seems ambiguous.

Why Isn’t Induction Circular?

A friend asked a question about my theory of knowledge: “It seems that your epistemology is pretty circular—You know by reasoning. How do you know that you know by reasoning? Well, you reasoned that you do.”

The Problem

He was asking about what has been called “the problem of method.” If it is true that we gain knowledge by a certain method, then we also gain “knowledge of method” by that very same method; so how did we discover the method in the first place? If at first we did not know anything about the method, then how, without such knowledge, were we able to gain it?

How do we know that, “To know is to reason about observations”? Is the method of induction circular?

Understanding and Then Faith

Imagine that the Apostle John approached you and said, “Believe in Jesus. Later I will tell you who he was and what he did.” What would be the content of your belief? Faith must be in something. A level of understanding precedes faith. Faith then opens the door for greater understanding.

A famous 20th Century theologian, Cornelius Van Til, argued the reverse. He argued that, unless God exists, no understanding can be possible to man.

Knowledge in the Bible

I surveyed the Bible to find its position on the status of knowledge. Does the Bible say knowledge/certainty is impossible to the unbeliever? Actually, I found that sinners can know many things. What they can’t know is the deceit of their own heart. But they can know good and evil. In fact, it is for knowing the good, yet choosing the evil, that people are condemned (Romans 1-2).

Below is a set of verses to help combat the mystical approach to knowledge (presuppositionalism). We see the common-sense view of knowledge: we learn by observation and reasoning. People come to faith because they see evidence; seeing leads to believing.

Knowledge plays a huge role in Scripture. In these verses we find a treasury of insight about what knowledge is possible to man and about how knowledge works. Enjoy!