Opinions on faith and life

Logical Fallacies and Biblical Proof Texts

2002-01-01

Example 1: False Dilemma

In this example, the problem is that God desires more than just one thing:
“And it shall come about that as the Lord delighted over you to prosper you, and multiply you, so the Lord will delight over you to make you perish and destroy you...” (Deut. 28:63)

“Then the master told his servant, ’Go out to the roads and country lanes and make them come in, so that my house will be full. I tell you, not one of those men who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’” (Luke 14:23-24)

God desired to bless Israel, but also to destroy it in response to their rebellion. The master desired to invite certain people to his banquet, but after they rejected him he desired to exclude them. Clearly, God desires all to be saved, but he also desires to destroy the disobedient and rebellious. So the proper logical construction would be as follows:

Example 2: Exclusion

The fallacy here is that confession with the tongue is assumed to be the ONLY thing required for salvation. But there is one other required element:
That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.“ (Romans 10:9-10).
The scriptures make it clear that belief is more than simple mental assent. James tells us that ”even the demons believe-- and shudder“(James 2:19). In Hebrews we read that ”without faith it is impossible to please God“ (Hebrews 11:6). Here, then, is the proper logical construction for this example:

Example 3: Equivocation

Here the word prophecy has two meanings which depend upon context. The first is that of divine revelation in general. But the context of 1 Cor. 13:8 is about spiritual gifts which are given for the good of the church. These are said to be imperfect things that will be replaced by perfection in heaven. In contrast, the Bible makes it clear that God’s words will never cease. So the correct statement is: