I’m going to start with a quick sanity test. Answer these questions as truthfully as you can.
- Is it sane to make things up and then insist they’re true?
- Is science guessing?
- Is science making up stories?
- Is it sane to say that something is true (or false) when you have no way of knowing other than by making things up and claiming those made-up things are true?
- What word comes to mind when someone makes something up and calls it truth?
- Is it sane for five people to agree that they’ll insist that something is true, even though they have no proof that the thing is true?
- Suppose 5 Republicans agree that something is true while having no proof; is that rational?
- Suppose 5 Democrats agree in the same way; is that rational?
- Suppose 5 theologians agree in the same way; is that rational?
- Suppose 5 scientists agree in the same way; is that rational?
- Suppose 5 Supreme Court judges agree in the same way; is that rational?
- If 10 agreed, would that make the made-up stuff true?
- If 100 agreed, would that make the made-up stuff true?
- What if most of the population agreed; would reality change to conform to the majority?
The point of the test is that it’s not rational to make stuff up and call it true. Something doesn’t become true just because many people or important people say it’s true.
Remember your answers to those questions as you read this book. Some people may want to change their answers as they read on from this point. I hope you choose sanity. Some people won’t.
Many revelations in this book are quite likely to be new to you, so novel that you may reject them at first without even considering them. It’s normal to reject something you’ve never heard, and it’s difficult to accept things you’ve never heard. On the other hand, you may be one of those who says, “Something inside me told me this, but I’ve never heard anyone say this before; of course it’s true.” You may be part of an even smaller group who’ve known these things for a long time.
Three sanity-killing philosophies are deadly to rational thinking. These philosophies are ubiquitous throughout modern society—even in the Church. Christians never need to be irrational. Those Christians who struggle with rational thought generally do so because of these three philosophies, since these philosophies destroy rational thought.
Sanity-killing philosophy #1 is the notion that the human mind is capable of self-generating knowledge of truth without the benefit of either revelation from God or observation. A term that’s sometimes used for this philosophy is “rationalism.”
Sanity-killing philosophy #2 is the concept that God doesn’t reveal anything to anyone. This philosophy is one of the precepts of the philosophy of Naturalism. Naturalism has several forms, and some of those forms claim that God reveals nothing. Christians try not to be affected by this philosophy, but it’s difficult to avoid the influence of the culture.
Sanity-killing philosophy #3 is the concept that all knowledge is personal. “There are no absolutes.” “Everything is relative.” “Each person has his or her own reality.” Sometimes this philosophy is called “relativism.” Knowledge is partial, but that doesn’t mean nothing can be known.
Some words aren’t politically correct. Consider the words “sane,” “insane,” and “irrational.” They’re usually used as personal attacks or ad hominem fallacies. However, these words aren’t without meaning, and they do apply to certain situations. I’m going to use these words to describe several common human conditions.
On the first DVD of “The Truth Project” small group study, Del Tackett considers the subject of truth. He defines truth as conformity to fact or reality. Sanity is reacting to reality as it really is. Insanity is losing touch with reality and believing that lies are real. We all suffer from common insanity, which is losing touch with reality. I highly recommend this study, by the way, if you can find someone who’s hosting it. The link to the website is here.
What you’ll read here is life-shaking if you can receive it. I wrote this book to expose a tragic flaw in thinking that pervades every aspect of society. It explains how sincere reasoners can have diametrically opposed positions on things like these:
- Creation versus evolution
- knowing Christ versus Secularism
- pro-life versus pro-choice
- free enterprise versus Socialism/Communism
- Biblical family structure versus extra-marital sex, homosexuality, pedophilia, and assorted other options.
If you allow it, what’s written in this book will change your life. It’s about reason, the difference between sanity and insanity. It’s about the difference between rationality and irrationality.