Dear Christian: Trust and Faith are NOT the Same Thing!

Love Is Hope Hope Is Faith Faith Is Trust Trust Is Love :: Love ...

(Christian word salad)

 

Spokesman for William Lane Craig, evangelical apologist and historian:

Christian theologians wouldn’t ask you to believe “by faith” as you are using the term.  The Bible actually commands us to give you reasons to believe…not just call you to believe (see 2 Peter 3:15).  So asking people to believe the claim “by faith” in the way you are using the term would be un-biblical.  Remember that the meaning of the term “faith” in Christian theology is simply “trust”.  If one trusts God then one can be said to have “faith” in God.  So it is sort of an odd usage of the term to talk about believing by “faith” in the way you seem to be using it.

Gary:

Thanks for the response.

Good. So your definition of faith is “trust”. That is good to know because not all Christians define faith in the same way.

Jesus, if correctly quoted, encouraged people to trust (have faith in) the supernatural claims he was making about himself with the maturity of a small child. Small children do not use reason and logic to evaluate truth claims. Small children accept as truth whatever their authority figures tell them. They do not conduct research on the evidence to verify the accuracy of the claims. Asking educated adults to believe very unusual claims based on “trust” in one’s word violates the principles of critical thinking. It is not rational.

Extremely unusual, outlandish claims, regardless of who is making them, should be viewed with skepticism until substantial evidence is presented to support the claim. Simply taking Jesus’ word (or that of any other “teacher”) is foolish.

Jesus also (allegedly) once said this: “Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.” Here, Jesus is praising and promoting belief in dead body re-animations/transformations (resurrections)– based on hearsay. Again, that is a violation of critical thinking skills.

Christians have little if any objective evidence for their core belief—the bodily resurrection of Jesus. This claim is primarily based on alleged eyewitness testimony contained in four alleged eyewitness sources, but the fact is that this claim is heavily disputed among historians. Many historians and scholars, including the Catholic Church, doubt the eyewitness authorship of the Gospels.

I would suggest that the primary evidence for many evangelicals, including Dr. Craig, is the “still, small voice” in their heads, as I mentioned in my first comment to Dr. Craig. The problem with this “evidence” is that evangelical Christians cannot prove to anyone that this “voice” is anyone other than themselves…their inner monologue.

Trust in your doctor, lawyer, general contractor, etc. is supported by substantial, verifiable evidence of their expertise and accuracy in decision making (licenses, board certifications, reviews, etc..).  That is very different from the faith/trust Christians profess in Jesus.

Christians may have questionable eyewitness claims that a few people saw Jesus alive again after his death, but they have zero evidence that Jesus is still alive and ruler of the universe—other than their subjective perceptions of him living in their “heart”.

That is not trust, that is wishful thinking.

 

 

 

End of post.

3 thoughts on “Dear Christian: Trust and Faith are NOT the Same Thing!

  1. Well… Yes it is according to google search definition:

    faith
    /feɪθ/
    Learn to pronounce
    noun
    1.
    complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
    “this restores one’s faith in politicians”

    So your premise is flawed it seems.

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    1. Well, that depends on which Christian you ask, Liam. Let’s take a look at the definition of faith as used by the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews:

      “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

      Now if faith and trust are synonymous, as you assert, Liam, then we should be able to insert the word “trust” into the above passage from Hebrews and the meaning of the passage should not change. Let’s try it:

      Trust is the substance of things hoped for; trust is the evidence of things not seen.

      This sentence makes no sense! Trust is the evidence of things not seen??? Nonsensical. So you see, the biblical definition of faith is not synonymous with “trust”. Faith meant something else to the author of Hebrews. I would say that “hope” is more synonymous with the author of Hebrews’ use of the word “faith”.

      Hope is the substance of things hoped for; hope is the evidence of things not seen.

      Perfect! And what is “hope”? Answer: Wishful thinking.

      Wishful thinking is not rational thinking.

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      1. An even clearer definition of Christian faith, as understood by the early Christians is found in the Second Epistle to the Corinthians:

        So we are always confident; even though we know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord— 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight.

        Walking “not by sight” is walking blindly. Walking blindly means that you have abandoned your use of reason and are simply hoping that you are going in the right direction…that you are not about to walk off a cliff. Faith is walking blindly. Faith is taking a blind leap. THAT is why Jesus told his disciples that they must have the faith of a child. Jesus did not ask them to use their critical thinking skills to evaluate the evidence regarding his supernatural claims. No! He asked them to accept his word as fact. He asked them to HOPE. Jesus asked his disciples to believe with all their hearts and minds by blind obedience, in the same way that a small child obeys his father or mother—without thinking about it.

        That is not “trust” in the mature, adult sense of that word. The mature, adult definition of trust is: confidence based on a reasoned analysis of the data.

        Liked by 1 person

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