“Reason” is the enemy of religion, but come let us reason together.

A reintroduction basically is necessary to the background of this post, a friend of mine a pharmacist by Training and a thinker of sorts posted this on Facebook and pitched his flag in the ground initially as holding this words as true on some level. While answers have been given as to why he may have to open up within that assumption, I require that he definitely open up within his assumption if his purpose for higher truths be fulfilled.

Hence I begin my answer to his post thus. First following an empirical discourse let me define the context of what he calls reason. Borrowing a leaf from a foremost thinker on the subject, Immanuel Kant,

“For Kant, reason is both a logical and a transcendental faculty. As a logical faculty, it produces so-called mediated conclusions through abstractions, as a transcendental faculty, it creates conceptions and contains a priori cognitions whose object cannot be given empirically”.

So let’s assume that my friend subscribes to reason as an ultimate entity in itself and hence the valiant statement he made as true, he can first see that the reason or in some quarters, logic is only enjoying a one sided view of its own definition in that saying, but in a much larger picture it is of a twofold meaning so to speak.

Now on this basis some other authorities on the same subject defined reason in a context, so as to get a better picture of what it is. See Thomas Aquinas.

Aquinas sees reason and faith as two ways of knowing. "Reason" covers what we can know by experience and logic alone. From reason, we can know that there is a God and that there is only one God; these truths about God are accessible to anyone by experience and logic alone, apart from any special revelation from God.
"Faith" covers what we can know by God’s special revelation to us (which comes through the Bible and Christian Tradition). By faith, we can know that God came into the world through Jesus Christ and that God is triune (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). These truths about God cannot be known by reason alone.

Faith builds on reason. Since faith and reason are both ways of arriving at truth -- and since all truths are harmonious with each other -- faith is consistent with reason. If we understand faith and reason correctly, there will be no conflict between what faith tells us and what reason tells us.

“The word in itself says in Isaiah 1:18-22. nkjv “Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the Lord , “Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool. Your silver has become dross, Your wine mixed with water” .

This version of reason as used here of Which God speaking to and through Isaiah is broken down for clarity.

Come now - This is addressed to the nation of Israel; and the same exhortation is made to all sinners. It is a solemn act on the part of God, submitting the claims and principles of his government to reason, on the supposition that men may see the propriety of his service, and of his plan.

Let us reason together - ונוכחה venivākechâh from יכח yâkach, not used in Kal, but in Hiphil; meaning to show, to prove.

You see God submitting His ways to reason again to proof as much as possible within the limited confines of man’s understanding like in the following other verses in Scripture.

Job 13:15 : 'Surely I will prove my ways (righteous) before him;' that is, I will justify my ways before him.

Other places you might consider this context of reason are found in exhaustive definition as — Also to correct, reprove, convince, Job 32:12; to rebuke, reproach, censure, Job 6:25; to punish, Job 5:17; Proverbs 3:12; to judge, decide, Isaiah 11:3; to do justice, Isaiah 11:4; or to contend, Job 13:3; Job 16:21; Job 22:4.

Here it denotes the kind of contention, or argumentation, which occurs in a court of justice, where the parties reciprocally state the grounds of their cause. God had been addressing magistrates particularly, and commanding them to seek judgment, to relieve the oppressed, to do justice to the orphan and widow; all of which terms are taken from courts of law. He here continues the language, and addresses them as accustomed to the proceedings of courts, and proposes to submit the case as if on trial.

He then proceeds Isaiah 1:18-20, to adduce the principles on which he is willing to bestow pardon on them; and submits the case to them, assured that those principles will commend themselves to their reason and sober judgment.

In making sure that reason or God’s reasonable argument is seen as a logical and exact course of action He says overlaying previous knowledge of which he is sure the hearts and hearers must have given consideration to that,

Though your sins be as scarlet - The word used here - שׁנים shānı̂ym - denotes properly a bright red color, much prized by the ancients.

The Arabic verb means to shine, and the name was given to this color, it is supposed by some, on account of its splendor, or bright appearance. It is mentioned as a merit of Saul, that he clothed the daughters of Israel in scarlet, 2 Samuel 1:24, Our word scarlet, denoting a bright red, expresses the color intended here.

This color was obtained from the eggs of the coccus ilicis, a small insect found on the leaves of the oak in Spain, and in the countries east of the Mediterranean. The cotton cloth was dipped in this color twice; and the word used to express it means also double-dyed, from the verb שׁנה shânâh, to repeat. From this double-dying many critics have supposed that the name given to the color was derived. The interpretation which derives it from the sense of the Arabic word to shine, however, is the most probable, as there is no evidence that the double-dying was unique to this color. It was a more permanent color than that which is mentioned under the word crimson. White is an emblem of innocence. Of course sins would be represented by the opposite. Hence, we speak of crimes as black, or deep-dyed, and of the soul as stained by sin. There is another idea here. This was a fast, or fixed color. Neither dew, nor rain, nor washing, nor long usage, would remove it.

Hence, it is used to represent the fixedness and permanency of sins in the heart. No human means will wash them out. No effort of man, no external rites, no tears, no sacrifices, no prayers, are of themselves sufficient to take them away. They are deep fixed in the heart, as the scarlet color was in the Web of cloth, and an almighty power is needful to remove them

Now if that isn’t enough to dig in further why reason isn’t an enemy, let us go back to our base definition of reason within it’s context.

Our good reasoning friend Thomas Aquinas, characterizes the articles of faith as first truths that stand in a "mean between science and opinion." They are like scientific claims since their objects are true; they are like mere opinions in that they have not been verified by natural experience.

Though he agrees with Augustine that no created intellect can comprehend God as an object, the intellect can grasp his existence indirectly. The more a cause is grasped, the more of its effects can be seen in it; and since God is the ultimate cause of all other reality, the more perfectly an intellect understands God, the greater will be its knowledge of the things God does or can do. So although we cannot know the divine essence as an object, we can know whether He exists and on the basis of analogical knowledge what must necessarily belong to Him.
Aquinas also elucidates the relationship between faith and reason on the basis of a distinction between higher and lower orders of creation. Aquinas criticizes the form of naturalism that holds that the goodness of any reality.

"is whatever belongs to it in keeping with its own nature" without need for faith (II-IIae, q.2, a.3).

Yet, from reason itself we know that every ordered pattern of nature has two factors that concur in its full development: one on the basis of its own operation; the other, on the basis of the operation of a higher nature.

The example is water: in a lower pattern, it naturally flows toward the centre, but in virtue of a higher pattern, such as the pull of the moon, it flows around the center. In the realm of our concrete knowledge of things, a lower pattern grasps only particulars, while a higher pattern grasps universals.

These analogies would hold true, and resonate with you, because besides being a pharmacist and a chemist of deeper understanding of molecular structures, you must have thought at some point in time in your studies, that why do you have families of compounds that exert influence on all other compounds.

Isn’t it like being subject to the design effect of that parent structure?

Ponder that in light of Gods ways and science’s ways and see which of higher pattern and which is of a lower pattern, and reasonably come to a conclusion…

I don't want to flog this with more rhetoric but i expect you fill in the incomplete thought, but as So as SizzlePro rightly said there is a singularity and science and religion agrees on that.

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store