Thursday, January 28, 2016

Logical Fallacies - Part 6

I am back looking at my list of logical fallacies and it is very instructive and challenging for me.

A common error is the BLACK OR WHITE one or to put it is more modern terms the RIGHT OR WRONG fallacy. This argument boils everything down to two choices. A good one or a bad one. It has people looking back and making moral decisions they they likely didn't make at the time as they are cross examined about the past.

We can do this to ourselves. Some folks are very prone to this. Why didn't I do this? If I only did that then this other thing wouldn't have happened. One decision is demonized and the other one is glorified.

Sure. There are clear cut decisions we make that follow this pattern. Temptation and pressure of some kind is often involved. It is an error to think that every decision we make is either a good one or a bad one.

"Yes, to this day whenever Moses is read a veil lies over their hearts. But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit." - 2 Corinthians 3:15-18 ESV

Sad to say... There are Churches today where the 'law of Moses is read.' There are homes like this. People blame religion but read this next passage carefully.

"For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them" - Romans 2:14-15 ESV

Fallen men accuse or excuse. Religion has little to do with it. Systems form around this very human tendency. Only a judge has this right. God's mercy has prevailed over His judgement at the cross. He is not accusing or excusing. In His mind that stage of Judgement has passed. He has made a ruling. Those in Christ are in one category and those who are not are in another. End of story.

God gave the law for a purpose and it is holy but it was not given to be tool of conformity only. It was given to reveal the fall of man to those who had become familiar with it's affects.

"Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin." - Romans 3:19-20 ESV

The law makes a category of things BLACK OR WHITE.

"What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, 'You shall not covet.' But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead." - Romans 7:7-8 ESV

Then we realize that once we know something is wrong will still want to do it. We might even want to do it more than before. It reveals something crucial to us. We are broken and can't fix ourselves. We need a Savior.

Making every decision a good or bad choice is dangerous because it makes manipulation very possible. It awakens our fallen nature that looks for favor to cover it's transgression.

God has a different economy for us to function in.

"The faith that you have, keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who has no reason to pass judgment on himself for what he approves. But whoever has doubts is condemned if he eats, because the eating is not from faith. For whatever does not proceed from faith is sin." - Romans 14:22-23 ESV

This example uses food as the example. The chapter deals with food sacrificed to idols which was a common practice in Rome at the time. Did the fact that certain food had been sacrificed to idols taint it for consumption? Did someones else's actions turn a neutral action into a BLACK OR WHITE decision?

The scripture does not turn to the law to get an answer. No. The shift is made to love and care.

" 'All things are lawful for me,' but not all things are helpful. 'All things are lawful for me,' but I will not be dominated by anything. 'Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food' - and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body." - 1 Corinthians 6:12-13 ESV

" 'All things are lawful,' but not all things are helpful. 'All things are lawful,' but not all things build up. Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor." - 1 Corinthians 10:23-24 ESV

Some make seeking other people's good a new law but it isn't. We are free. All ten commandment are reiterated in the new testament. The Sabbath went from a day to a continual state of mind but the other nine can be found almost exactly as they were given to Moses.

Still. We are free. We are not under law. Those who believe are under grace.  We can just make choices by faith within the framework of The faith. That leaves us a large free space.

"He sent from on high, he took me; he drew me out of many waters. He rescued me from my strong enemy and from those who hated me, for they were too mighty for me. They confronted me in the day of my calamity, but the LORD was my support. He brought me out into a broad place; he rescued me, because he delighted in me." - Psalm 18:16-19 ESV

The current can drag us in a direction but God rescues us from a 'this way' or 'that way' mentality. Grace places us in freedom. Fear is removed. Liberty is assured.


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