By Beth Groh
Talk about an unlikely source for Christian parenting advice: Star Trek.
Now I’m not even close to being a big Star Trek fan—never had the action figures, never bought the videos or DVDs, certainly never even dreamed of going to a Trekkie convention.
But I got to thinking that Spock—the fictitious half-human, half-Vulcan officer of the Starship Enterprise—could teach us a thing or two as we consider how to equip our children with a biblical worldview.
He lived for logic…simply couldn’t understand why humans would sometimes set logic aside in making an emotional decision that did not have proper order or reasoning.
If A = true, and B= true, then A + B = true.
As the Creator of the Universe, God is the author of the Laws of Logic, just like the Laws of Mathematics, Laws of Nature, even the Laws of Thermodynamics.
Sometimes in our Christian walk we can get caught up in the feelings stirred by our faith—and what a powerful gift it is to have consuming emotional experiences to share with others as we witness to His grace and mercy.
But witnessing only through emotions may sometimes leave a door closed—a door God may want us to help open in the hearts and minds of others.
Some people—perhaps some of our own children—may tend to be the analyzers, those who process new information or ideas first through the brain, not the heart.
Perhaps without you even knowing it, they may be setting a high bar for you when you share new information. Like Spock, they may first test it with Logic. If the information or knowledge you’re trying to share is not logical, then it’s quickly dismissed—even when it may be not only true, but vital information that’s missed.
Your logic fails? Your credibility is lost.
“In the Christian worldview, to be logical is to think in a way that is consistent with God’s thinking. God is logical,” so writes Dr. Jason Lisle, in his effective primer on logic, Discerning Truth: Exposing Errors in Evolutionary Arguments.
A creationist speaker for Answers in Genesis, Dr. Lisle exposes many of the logical errors that evolutionists—and even young-earth Christians—make in arguing over the origins of man, and other hot-button social issues in our day.
Like Spock, Dr. Lisle calls out errors in logic and offers practical instruction to others willing to “learn the rules” in disciplined reasoning.
See if you can pass Dr. Lisle’s test in spotting the fallacies in these statements:
“It’s a scientific fact that bacteria have evolved resistance to various antibiotics, so creationists are wrong to say that evolution has not been observed.” (Equivocation: The argument shifts the meaning of the word “evolution.”)
“Do you believe in God or science?” (Bifurcation: The question denies the possible belief in both.)
“God changed my life. So of course He exists.” (Begging the Question: The statement presupposes the conclusion.)
Now my point is not to give you a test on “equivocation” or “bifurcation.”
It’s simply this: We’re not only encouraged in the Bible to be prepared to share our faith, we’re commanded to do so.
“Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope you have.” (1 Pet. 3:15)
Certainly God placed a priority on logical reasoning. Is it any wonder that He divinely chose the articulate and well-reasoned Saul (converted to the Apostle Paul) to evangelize the logic-loving elite in Rome? He reached countless Gentile hearts through their analytical minds.
So embrace logic, like Spock. Perhaps study it or share the rules with your children. And then prayerfully consider how—and when—God will use your skills in logical thinking to reach others.
ACTION STEP: I’ve contacted my state lawmaker to introduce legislation requiring a semester course in logic and critical thinking as a core curriculum requirement in high school. Is that something you might support or encourage in your state or school district? If you homeschool or your children attend a Christian school, is that a requirement now?