Yes, Nancy -- I appreciate that you point that out. You see, I am post-conversion. This is why I went to the trouble to explain the difference between those who hold & live out religious beliefs and those who merely know _about_ those religious beliefs.
For most of my short life I said exactly the same things that you are saying, and I know I have told you before that I am confident that I cannot convince you. No one could convince me, that's for sure -- and they tried, too. It took God to convince me (if you would like my feeble attempt at accounting this, just ask).
Yes, faith and reason are a circle. Each person has assumptions he chooses to make about reality, and his reason works upon that basis. When something confronts those assumptions (for instance, when something appears unaffected by gravity, or when a seeming miracle occurs), each person can choose whether they are going to adjust their assumptions or whether they will interpret things according to the system their assumptions have already constructed. There will always be this circle -- a person will always have presuppositions that he goes back to, time and again.
If God's account for reality as it is set down in the Bible is true, something's going to have to break you into that circle of belief. It's certainly not going to be effort at understanding -- I can vouch for that. It's a supernatural act of God, and is in a sense inexplicable. I am unashamed of circular reasoning (i.e., reasoning from my presuppositions) -- I would simply ask you to consider why you are unashamed of your presuppositions. Do you find human logic or your mental capacity on its own to be a sufficient basis for comprehending reality? Do you find agnosticism and/or materialism a satisfying view of things?
I realize I am not perfectly humble, and seriously Nancy, I wish I were. If it were Christ emailing you instead of me, things would come across perfectly. What I speak is only hubris if it is false or if I gloat in it as if it were of my own construction. I believe that reality (and we're included in that reality) is God's, so all credit goes to God, not me. He not only created everything, but He decided to take upon Himself the ultimate humility when humanity rejected Him.
You're either left with trying to make life work on your own or you accept the Maker of life and all that He has to offer. I didn't come up with that choice; I stand in awe of it. It is the true sublime of all of life. To respond to your statement: what I believe SHOULD come from God, and I hope that it does. What others believe may or may not come from God -- take their ideas to the primary source and find out. :-)
Just out of curiosity, do you believe that you have no presuppositions?
>>> [log in to unmask] 11/04/04 03:01PM >>>
And I know, Will, that you will not see why all you have said is not
humility but hubris. You go back always to the claim that what you
believe DOES come from God and is therefore true and what others believe
does not come form God and is therefore untrue. And the circle