Why We Shouldn't Hate Philosophy

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Michael Gleghorn — For many people in our culture today, Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians got it right: "Philosophy is a walk on the slippery rocks." But for some in the Christian community, they didn't go far enough. Philosophy, they say, is far more dangerous than a walk on slippery rocks. It's an enemy of orthodoxy and a friend of heresy. It's typically a product of wild, rash, and uncontrolled human speculation. Its doctrines are empty and deceptive. Worse still, they may even come from demons!

Such attitudes are hardly new. The early church father Tertullian famously wrote:

"What has Jerusalem to do with Athens, the Church with the Academy, the Christian with the heretic? . . . I have no use for a Stoic or a Platonic . . . Christianity. After Jesus Christ we have no need of speculation, after the Gospel no need of research."

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"I wanted to write this program because philosophy sometimes receives an unnecessarily bad rap in our churches today. Although we certainly want to avoid being taken captive by empty and deceptive philosophy (Col. 2:8), we also need to recognize the tremendous resources which philosophy has to offer in helping us to clarify and defend the Christian faith (Tit. 1:9; 1 Pet. 3:15)."

Michael is a research associate with Probe Ministries. After earning a B.A. in psychology from Baylor University and a Th.M. in systematic theology from Dallas Theological Seminary, he is back at DTS pursuing more suffering a Ph.D. in theology. The joy of Michael's life is his wife Hannah, their daughter and their brand new baby boy.

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