Recently in our society there has been a big conflation with the word “reason” and secularism. The common idea is that reason leads to the conclusion that there is no God, where as some sort of blind step of faith leads to belief in God. This kind of thinking is, in it of itself, irrational. But, in order for me to make my argument for this issue, I must first define both “reason” and “faith.”
The simple definition of “reason” in the context I am using it in is “to think logically.” Easy enough, but why on earth does this exclude the use for God? This is something that I have yet to even understand at all. Many people might make the argument that if it can’t be proven with scientific, empirical evidence, then there is no reason to believe in it. This may be true for some cases, but when you ask questions such as “Is there a God?”, “What happens when we die?”, and “Is morality objective or relative?” you can’t even begin to answer these with empirical evidence. So, should these questions be excluded from all forms of logic? NO! To do so would be to avoid the issue at hand by simply ignoring it, and that is extremely irrational. One must open their mind to other ways of gaining knowledge, other than just scientific evidence.
So, where does faith come into play? The simple definition of “faith” is “Confident belief in the truth, value, or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing.” Why this has been misconstrued into meaning some blind, mindless assertion of something, I do not know. Faith is simply making a confident statement BASED on reasonable data that we already have. This may sound cliche, but everybody, including the naturalist, uses faith. To claim that you know with 100% hard evidence that God is not real, is a false claim in every way, and that is not based on reason alone, but a step of faith.
So, faith is simply a claim that is based off of reason. I don’t think whoever came up with the idea that atheists and naturalists are the only rational and free thinkers out there thought through the implications of that very well. So, in conclusion, while faith is definitely essential for the Christian doctrine, it is also essential for every other part of knowledge.