➲ Come, Let Us Reason: An Introduction to Logical Thinking Read ➺ Author Norman L. Geisler – Dcrjservices.co.uk



10 thoughts on “Come, Let Us Reason: An Introduction to Logical Thinking

  1. says:

    In the beginning section covering Aristotelian logic, Geisler tried to hastily cover in about 40 pages, what other textbooks took over a 100 pages to explain Geisler just dumped out multitudes of terms and concepts that left me frustratingly confused I had to turn elsewhere to actually learn it all Even after getting a grasp of deduction from other introductory text, I still found, in returning to Geisler, his writing to be convoluted Over all this is a simply terrible introduction to logic In the beginning section covering Aristotelian logic, Geisler tried to hastily cover in about 40 pages, what other textbooks took over a 100 pages to explain Geisler just dumped out multitudes of terms and concepts that left me frustratingly confused I had to turn elsewhere to actually learn it all Even after getting a grasp of deduction from other introductory text, I still found, in returning to Geisler, his writing to be convoluted Over all this is a simply terrible introduction to logic But my word, the worst thing about the book is that Geisler used it as a platform for his pet evangelical dogmas to frolic about Ironically considering the topic of the book , he often, quite embarrassingly so, engaged in fallacious reasoning in so doing I ll mention a few examples I read that got me furiously scribbling in the margins of the book THE SLIPPERY SLOP FALLACYAfter sharing about this fallacy, Geisler mentions one notable argument that avoids this fallacy is if you can t trust someone or some book that claims to be infallible in everything it says, then you can t trust it in anything Geisler continues to assert that since the bible claims to be inerrent and infallible, that if it is mistaken in a single historical or scientific fact, we can t trust any of it and might as well toss the whole thing in the trash First oft, there is just so much wrong with his confident assertion that the bible claims itself completely inerrent and infallible The verses he listed explicitly say no such thing and are themselves subject to different interpretations Moreover, the original authors can t be said to even be referring to the whole new testament for parts didn t even exist yet And finally, the bible contains many independent books, even if one book claimed inerrancy, the claim doesn t hold true for the other books within the canon which made no such claim But yeah, even if it was the case that every book of the bible did claim inerrency, Geisler s point that none of it could be trusted if it contained a single error, doesn t follow The only thing that would be falsified is the claim of infallibility and inerrency, everything else would either stand or fall based upon the evidence Suppose there is some factual error in the old testament, does that mean the bible cannot serve as one of our sources concerning ancient Israel Can we not trust that Israel was conquered by Babylonians Must we conclude that Jesus didn t exist and wasn t crucified Must we disregard the gospels as a source concerning the life and sayings of Jesus Must we conclude that some of the moral concepts and truths within its pages must be discounted even when they ring true and are congruent with reality This all or nothing thinking that either the bible is completely True or it is completely False, creates a dangerous bubble Geisler s bubble is made of steal, no amount of evidence could penetrate and convince him otherwise But other evangelicals influenced by Geisler s bad reasoning, may will eventually find an error in the bible they are not too hard to find and it will unnecessarily be the utter ruin of their faith Geisler offers a bad hypothesis, one that completely contradicts reality and then sets up a false dilemma that sets people up for a fall THE FALLACY OF CONFUSING VARIOUS KINDS OF CAUSESAfter writing about the different kinds of causes Effectual,Final,Formal,Material,Exemplar and instrumental , he gave an example of where someone commits the fallacy confusing causes, when they say If God determined all events, he must be responsible for all of the evil in the world Geisler claims that thinking God is responsible for the evil he determined, is the result of confusing primary and secondary causes.Geisler insisted early in the book that We still experience our choices as free even though God both knew what we would decide and chose that we would decide it long before we did. and later that God is the primary cause of all things, and, as sovereign, he is the primary cause of all events by knowing them and willing that they be so And finally, he states Being in control, he knows all that will happen and gives his consent to them, but the direct and immediate causes of them are the secondary causes that are employed So Geisler has thrown in here a number of categorical universal statements that state ALL THINGS and evil is among these things Therefore, according to Geisler, God first chooses the evil that we must freely decide to do ourselves God wills all evil and God gives his full consent to all the evil that happens in the world and finally, God is truly the primary cause to all evil Every rape, every child molestation and every murder was first determined, chosen and willed by God Genocide, ethnic cleansing and all sadistic brutality all is part of God s will that cannot be thwarted And yet, from from some tortured illogical twist of insanity, Geisler thinks that if God accomplishes all his evil plans which I am sure he d say are for some higher good through secondary means that He isn t responsible for evil So now, lets say I had a daughter who is an evil little brat and for the good of humanity, I know she needs to die But I know if I kill her with my own hands, I d be responsible for murder even though I was doing it for the higher good and I can t have that What might I do Well, no worries, for I read Norman Geisler, and know that if I have her murdered through secondary means, I will be completely innocent of her death Of course, the killer has to freely choose to murder my daughter from his own freewill So, I ll just condition my son so that he hates her and from his own heart, freely wants to murder his sister I will also fully consist and allow him to stab her to death, though I could have easily prevented it My son will think he is freely choosing to murder his sister, but really he is only doing what I already chose for him So now, only my son who actually shed the innocent blood is guilty and I am not responsible or any wrong, Right wrong After saying God willed, determined, consented and chose all things including all evil and how God is the primary cause of all evil but no responsible because he does it through secondary means Giesler then muddies the water by using terms that completely contradict everything he had been saying, he wrote When God created beings with free will, he knew that there was a possibility for evil, but it was necessary to allow that in order to have creatures that were truly free Even when God allows someone to do evil, she is still morally responsible for the evil that she does A secondary cause acts on its own, not simply as a mechanism of the primary cause Responsibility for evil must be given to the secondary cause that chooses to act in an evil way, not the primary cause that allows the freedom of creation Possibility Truly free Acts on its own Not simply a mechanism of the primary cause Geisler you wrote earlier God both knew what we would decide and chose that we would decide it long before we did Trying to slip these terms in, in order to try to get the Primary cause off the hook for causing all evil through secondary means, doesn t get you off the hook You mentioned early in the book that freewill is only a feeling, this sense we are making our own decisions when in reality we are only doing what God pre determined would do Speaking of whichTHE FAULTY DILEMMAS FALLACYOne example he gave of a faulty dilemma is that everything happens either by free will or by divine determinism His solution is to offer a 3rd path the he confidently thinks avoids the dilemma by state both are true and compatible He thinks God pre determining everything meaning it could only happen one way is compatible with free will But he only pulls this off by committing the equivocation fallacy For all who present the dilemma, who actually believe in freewill, understanding free will to mean that in certain cases, when one did Y, one could have truly done X instead If we could rewind and do things over, we could and might chose X instead of Y To solve the so called false dilemma, Geiser wrote freedom isn t hindered by determinism, because the person doesn t know his choices is determined and feels that the choice is his So we are all marionettes controlled by the divine Puppet master, but because God placed us under the illusion that we are free and deluded us with a feeling of freedom, we are somehow responsible for the evil God made us do Common Geisler You total redefine free will to mean nothing but a delusion and a feeling and cannot see that you have therefore totally selected determinism The true dilemma is between either determinism and indeterminism If determinism, then man is not responsible for his actions, even if he is deluded to think he had a choice, this wasn t the case, he couldn t have done otherwise To use an extreme example, consider the choices Hitler made, Geisler is confident God before the foundation of the world predetermined everything Hitler did, he couldn t have done otherwise, God is in absolute control But Geisler thinks since God also determined Hitler to be under the illusion that he freely choice wickedly, that Hitler is therefore responsible, though God made him do it Common Geisler, can you not see how absolutely convoluted this is Indeterminism means that, if we could go back in time, re roll the dice, so to say, Hitler might have made different choices, things might play out differently Geisler would reject this, and say if we rewound, and history replayed a million times, it would always play out the same,way according to God s pre written script If man couldn t not have done other wise, if the rapist had to rape the woman, because, God determined him to do so, it is simply disgusting to think that man is responsible and God is off the hook because that man was under the illusion that he has a choice THE FAULTY ANALOGY FALLACYOne example Geisler gave is If man changes, when he changes his mind, than God changes when God changes his mind But embraces the Greek philosophical understanding of God and thus cannot believe God ever changes, so for him this has to be a faulty analogy But now ,In order to convince us the statement about God changing his mind implying change in the Godhead is a faulty analogy, Geisler wrote how God changing his mind is merely a metaphor like when the bible says God has hands or wings This is a category mistake though Consider when the bible says God has wings, it is a metaphor and thus actually represents something When we say He covers us with the shadow of his wings we are referring to actual protection in a poetic way But God changing his mind is a totally different category Geisler trying to turn this statement God changes his mind into a metaphor doesn t work For if God cannot change, what does it mean when the bible says God changes what do these supposedly metaphorical statements actually represent Geisler wouldn t have an answer, he pretty much is just saying these are meaningless statements or that they mean the opposite of what they state When the bible says God changes, it really means He doesn t change When the bible claims there is a before for God, it really means there is no before for God Welcome to the logical world of Geisler I d suspect that that there is NO way that even the ALL powerful God to convince Geisler otherwise Heck, God tried, he stated it again and again how he changed his mind, he even pointed to how it was one of His praiseworthy attributes, but God is merely wasting his breath, for Geisler in this regard is immutable


  2. says:

    For a person who has grown up in the television age and not used to rational thinking 90% of America , this book is pivotal for an understanding of logic Upon first glance this book is hard to read because we are not used to thinking in terms of complex propositions And, like any textbook, thethat you put into it, theyou will get out An understanding of loigc is necessary for even a superficial reading of the Bible St Paul in every sentence is using logic to its deadly effect For a person who has grown up in the television age and not used to rational thinking 90% of America , this book is pivotal for an understanding of logic Upon first glance this book is hard to read because we are not used to thinking in terms of complex propositions And, like any textbook, thethat you put into it, theyou will get out An understanding of loigc is necessary for even a superficial reading of the Bible St Paul in every sentence is using logic to its deadly effect To read Romans and Galatians without reasoning properly isThe bright moments of this book is that the employment of logic opened up a new world for me I fault Geisler with certain examples he used Sometimes he did not go far enough That aside, tis should give the student an understanding of the basic content and how to use it After mastering this book I would recommend moving on to Introduction to Logic 11 ed by Copi and Cohen For a quick refreshment of logic see chapter two of Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview by Moreland and Craig I do not entirely endorse other parts of that book, but chapter two is pivotal Another limitation to the book is that most logical discourse today is done in the field of analytic logic, which Geisler usually avoids


  3. says:

    I honestly did not know what to expect when I opened this book It claims to be a christian book that could be used in a course on Introduction to Logic that is, a christian logic textbook It is just that No book is perfect, and this one has its share of failures However, It covers most of the important aspects that would be needed in an introduction to logic, and then some Many of the examples come from the Bible, or theological debate Each chapter is followed by a number of exercises th I honestly did not know what to expect when I opened this book It claims to be a christian book that could be used in a course on Introduction to Logic that is, a christian logic textbook It is just that No book is perfect, and this one has its share of failures However, It covers most of the important aspects that would be needed in an introduction to logic, and then some Many of the examples come from the Bible, or theological debate Each chapter is followed by a number of exercises that reinforce what was learned in the chapter An appendix gives a rudimentary explanation of truth tables, and there are a glossary and an index at the end which are quite useful All in all it is an interesting book, and worth reading at least once in one s life


  4. says:

    Great book to begin to study logic But anyone and everyone can read this Some ideas may take some time to really soak in but a re reading of the paragraphs or chapters is really worth it After all, Christians use logic, need to be logical, and should be so in talking about their beliefs as well as in conversation on any topic This book really brings it home in helping us to understand why we believe the things we say we do and better helps us to share with others logically what views that a Great book to begin to study logic But anyone and everyone can read this Some ideas may take some time to really soak in but a re reading of the paragraphs or chapters is really worth it After all, Christians use logic, need to be logical, and should be so in talking about their beliefs as well as in conversation on any topic This book really brings it home in helping us to understand why we believe the things we say we do and better helps us to share with others logically what views that are most dear to us I am sure the non Christian will have equal value from reading this readable presentation


  5. says:

    Great book for any Christian who wants to learn to thinkclearly Check out my chapter by chapter review here Great book for any Christian who wants to learn to thinkclearly Check out my chapter by chapter review here


  6. says:

    Very good.


  7. says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I really enjoyed this book It was hard work sometimes going over some of the homework parts of the book however, it did add to understanding the subject better I have read most of Gordon Clark s book on Logic and part of Kreeft s book on Socratic Logic and I found Geisler to be my favorite Geisler throws one straight into syllogisms, which I liked although for someone who never gave logic a thought might find this a little difficult At any rate, I like how Geisler used Scripture throughout I really enjoyed this book It was hard work sometimes going over some of the homework parts of the book however, it did add to understanding the subject better I have read most of Gordon Clark s book on Logic and part of Kreeft s book on Socratic Logic and I found Geisler to be my favorite Geisler throws one straight into syllogisms, which I liked although for someone who never gave logic a thought might find this a little difficult At any rate, I like how Geisler used Scripture throughout the book however, he also has great non Christian examples He even has a chapter on logic in literature, which is fantastic His chapter on non formal logic is to the point and well written with good examples Overall I grew in my understanding of not just logic, but Scripture and Logic Jesus is called the logos for reason no pun intended That is, in a nut shell Logic is the Structure for the Christian thinking, and the Scripture is the content for Christian thinking This simply means I know the Bible better and I am able to discern when anti Christian thoughts make fallacious statements.After my study of logic, I would make it a required course for all children along side math and grammar Moreover, I would make it a first primer for biblical hermeneutics Wait, back in the day before the Puritans and Christians were kicked out from control of school this was a requirement.The two cons of the book is how fast Geisler dives into the subject this is subjective because I like that, however, for some this would be a negative The other is Geisler s non Scriptural understanding of human free will, which in at least two places, makes him commit a fallacy about his deference of it It would be better if he would stick to the logic and scripture, which teaches if God is sovereign over your mind, then relative to God you are not free That is, if the question is relative to my own experience then I experience freedom But if the question is relative to God s own sovereign action over my soul, then no, I do not have freedom this is how I would suspect most to mean by asking about free will in context of the Christian God Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther would be a better read on this subject


  8. says:

    For me, this was a good refresher course on Logic and even better to get it in a Christian Apologetic framework.There would be much benefit ifChristians were to come to understand the mechanics behind reasoning , thus they would be able to put forward better arguments I direct this at myself as well Even though I have a Mathematical background, it is easy to get caught up in the emotional side of things and to make many of the fallacies explained in this book.I think the Authors For me, this was a good refresher course on Logic and even better to get it in a Christian Apologetic framework.There would be much benefit ifChristians were to come to understand the mechanics behind reasoning , thus they would be able to put forward better arguments I direct this at myself as well Even though I have a Mathematical background, it is easy to get caught up in the emotional side of things and to make many of the fallacies explained in this book.I think the Authors have done a good job and would recommend it and will no doubt read it again in the future


  9. says:

    Having not studied formal logic before this book I was in over my head Still, I advise one dive right it It is clear enough if one takes the time to study the material and not merely read it It s a book to open the mind to the extensive possibilities of honorable debate One, by Gods grace, will close the back cover determined to not only combats errant views but the errant arguments for his own views.


  10. says:

    Geisler does a great job at making logic a lot easier to understand The examples are all from the bible,theology and apologetics because it was written with Christians in mind This book only goes into the very basics of logic If you came onto the book thinking that there was going to be modal logic,predicate logic or any otheradvanced topics in logic then you will be very disappointed This book is a starting point and from this book you can move up the ladder to other logic texts.


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