Sunday, March 29, 2009

The tempers, humors, and peculiar turns of the mind, whether they be natural or acquired, have a great influence upon our judgment, and become the occasion of many mistakes. Let us survey a few of them –

Some persons are of an easy and credulous (apt to believe without sufficient basis) temper, while others are perpetually discovering a spirit of contradiction. The credulous man is ready to receive every thing for truth, that has but a shadow of evidence; every new book that he reads, and every ingenious man with whom he converses, has power enough to draw him into the sentiments of the speaker or writer. He has so much complaisance in him, or weakness of soul, that he is ready to resign his own opinion to the first objection which he hears, and to receive any sentiments of another that are asserted with a positive air and much assurance. Thus he is under a kind of necessity, through the indulgence of this credulous humor, either to be often changing his opinions, or to believe inconsistencies.”
Does this bring James 1:8 to mind?


”The man of contradiction is of a contrary humor, for he stands ready to oppose every thing that is said; he gives but a slight attention to the reasons of other men, from an inward and scornful presumption that they have no strength in them. When he reads or hears a discourse different from his own sentiments, he does not give himself leave to consider whether that discourse may be true; but employs all his powers immediately to confute it. Your great disputers, and your men of controversy, are in continual danger of this sort of prejudice: they contend often for victory, and will maintain whatsoever they have asserted, while truth is lost in the noise and tumult of reciprocal contradictions; and it frequently happens, that a debate about opinions is turned into a mutual reproach of persons.”

Isaac Watts, "Logic" - Top photo from the Internet, bottom photo by Alec Ee.

5 comments:

HAINAngel2000 said...

Yes I know many people fence ride and sway in their faith, instead of standing ground. But also allowing themselves to grow in their faith. This is many people today. I think all humans are guilty of at some point or another. But I have seen it so much in the world today.

HAINAngel2000 said...

"But also allowing themselves to grow in their faith" what I meant to say is although we should grow in our faith and be open to learn we should not sway from our faith. lolol kinda missed it there lol sorry pushed enter to soon

Mel said...

Great post! So it seems, as in most things, that the secret here is finding the balance between being dogmatically assured of the truth of your beliefs, while still remaining open to the changing of those beliefs if it's revealed that what you thought was the truth actually was not. That's a tricky maneuver, for sure, and one that I believe is only possible with the help and guidance of the Author of Truth Himself (or Herself).

An interesting point, when I was reading "Adventures in Missing the Point," Tony Campolo wrote that in the original languages of the Bible, the Holy Spirit is many times referred to in the female sense. Which brought to my mind visions of "Surayu" (sp?) in "The Shack." That opens up huge new questions and trains of thought in my mind. Pretty cool, huh?

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hi Fred :)

The two types of people you have analysed are the extreme types. However, there are people who critically judge ideas and opinions and, if found good, change their opinions. You can never trust the first two. Third is a good,dependable man. So many people have not see Jesus in person yet they gave up their lives for HIM.

The first person has a porous mind and the second person has a closed mind. Our mind should open like a parchute otherwise we will fall.

These are some of the thoughts that came to my mind.

Have a good day, Fred :)
Joseph

FCB said...

Hi Mary,
Yes, I find myself swayed more easily than I should be when I hear a persuasive speaker or read. Sometimes if someone hits a chord we want to agree even if they are a bit off base.
I think I am more open now than I ever have been, but more grounded too. Guess I have seen so many things I clung to in the past that I now see the error in. That's good, I hope :)
Love Fred



Hi Mel,
"Herself"!!!!!!!!!!!! Yikes!!!
Just kidding, but that could get you thrown out of some churches, or blogs. God has a strong arm, and a breast to suckle us. He is our all in all, and as I'm writing this listening to "I saw what I saw" I'm feeling the tender, femine side of God, and it is good.
He is our Father and our mother, as well as our friend and brother, all in all.
God bless your open heart and sensitive soul,
Fred


Hi Joseph,
I looked forward to your thoughts, and I'm afraid I see a little of both in me. I need to be more like the third man you describe.
I'm working on it,
Fred