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August 1, 2009

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top leftIn this issue . . .

Q: Are you logical?

A: Whenever I hear people debating some issue (abortion, gun control, origins, religion, politics, etc.), I often spot a number of mistakes in their arguments. Mistakes in reasoning are called “logical fallacies,” and they abound in origins debates. I have often thought it would be fun to carry a little buzzer that I could push when someone makes a fundamental mistake in reasoning. Of course, that would be impolite. However, we should all become familiar with logical fallacies so that our mental buzzer goes off whenever we hear a mistake in reasoning.

Logic (the study of correct and incorrect reasoning) has become a lost skill in our culture. And that is a shame. It is a very valuable tool, particularly for the Christian who wants to defend his or her faith better. Evolutionists often commit logical fallacies, and it is important that creationists learn to identify and refute such faulty reasoning. Sadly, I often see creationists committing logical fallacies as well. There is hardly anything more embarrassing than someone who advocates your position, but does so using bad reasoning!

Logic involves the use of arguments. When some people think of “arguments,” they think of an emotionally heated exchange—a “yelling match.” But that is not what is meant here. An argument is a chain of statements (called “propositions”) in which the truth of one is asserted on the basis of the other(s). Biblically, we are supposed to argue in this way; we are to provide a reasoned defense (an argument) for the Christian faith (1 Peter 3:15) with gentleness and respect. An argument takes certain information as accepted (this is called a “premise”), and then proceeds to demonstrate that another claim must also be true (called the “conclusion”).

Read on as Answers in Genesis astrophysicist and apologist Dr. Jason Lisle continues exploring logic and debate in the Introduction of our new Logical Fallacies article series.

News to Note Quick Look

Drowning out plausibility: The first animals didn’t evolve in the ocean, claims a controversial new study. Instead, the study suggests the earliest animals called a saltwater lake home. Read more.

Evolution “ahead of schedule”: Fossil specimens discovered in Russia 15 years ago have finally landed in the news—for reasons including the fact that they were millions of years “ahead of schedule.” Read more.

Also: at least they tried, more than eye candy, visit the Creation Museum Temple, and don’t miss . . . . Read more.

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