Answering The Atheist
June 6, 2004 / Volume 4, Issue 23
THE ATHEIST'S COMPLAINT:
Should we believe all things? 1 Corinthians 13:7 says we should, but Proverbs 14:15 and 1 Thessalonians 5:21 say we should only believe that which evidence warrants belief in. Is there a contradiction?
Certainly, it is prudent for us to test things and to weigh the evidence of the things we are asked to believe. This is the idea presented in both Proverbs 14:15 and 1 Thessalonians 5:21. However, I suggest that the words of Paul in 1 Corinthians 13:7 do not contradict this, but rather deal with a different aspect of believing.
Paul is certainly not telling the Corinthians to be gullible people, for he clearly told the Thessalonians that they should test all things and cling to that which was good. It must be remembered that in context, Paul is personifying love. Among the characteristics which can be found in love is a propensity to trust. Love does not approach things with suspicion. If something can, in good conscience be believed, then it ought to be believed. It is not a characteristic of love to manifest distrust in others.
There is no contradiction.
This article is a response to Skeptic's Annotated Bible