Until about 5 minutes ago I had never heard the term alogical. That is because it is a made up term. It is a term that was made up by Dr. Kevin Bauder at Shaper Iron. It is a term that he is using for this purpose:
I have given this name to the philosophical position that denigrates the role of reason or logic in theology and morality. Alogicals take the slogan Sola Scriptura to an unwarranted extreme. They deny that we may proclaim “Thus saith the Lord,” unless we have a direct, verbatim Scripture to quote.
I think that we all know people who fit this description. You know, the guys who need a proof text for everything that comes out of the pastor’s mouth. The fact of the matter is the Dr. Bauder is correct in is assesment of this philosophy.
Dr. Bauder continues:
Let’s begin by considering the act of reading. Alogicals seem to assume that reading is simply a matter of running their eyes over the words on a page, upon which meaning somehow (magically?) registers itself in their minds. They seem to believe that the transfer of meaning through the written page is automatic and intuitive.
Nothing could be further from the truth. When we read, we are constantly engaged in a process of drawing inferences. We observe words and phrases, and we infer that one is a subject, another is a predicate, and yet another is an object. We are constantly distinguishing nouns from verbs from modifiers from connectives. We reason that a particular sentence explains something, while another asks a question, and a third issues a command. We reason about the connection of words within a sentence, of sentences within a paragraph, and of paragraphs within a whole work.
If we are skilled in a language, we may draw all of these inferences so rapidly that they appear to be intuitive. When we engage in serious exegesis, however, we take these apparent intuitions and test them through a process of deliberate induction and analysis. Indeed, another name for our exegetical method is the inductive‐analytical method.
This observation is too important to miss. All textual understanding—ALL of it—is the result of induction and analysis. This includes our understanding of the text of Scripture. We have never once understood any biblical proposition without engaging in a process of reasoning.
The truth of the matter is that we all bring presuppositions to the text when we seek to do the work of exegesis. The problem comes when we refuse to admit these presuppositions. The result of ignoring our presuppositions is that we will never judge them in light of Scripture without admitting them. Or, as Dr. Bauder puts it, we must acknowledge that our own reasoning plays a roll in exegesis.
Here is how Dr. Bauder concludes his thoughts:
Therefore, to suggest that the statements of Scripture are somehow more authoritative than inferences drawn from those statements is, at best, horribly naïve. It is the position of a juvenile who has never reflected upon what she or he actually does when reading the Bible. When this position is pressed with an air of moral superiority, it becomes colossal arrogance. Alogicals elevate their own inferences to the level of biblical authority by simply refusing to recognize that they are inferences, while simultaneously denying anyone else’s authority to reason from the statements of Scripture.
Here is the grave difficulty with alogicality. Alogicals cannot produce a single statement of Scripture that requires their position in so many words. There is no verse in the Bible that says, “It is wrong to impose moral requirements that are merely inferred from Scripture.” In order to sustain their own moral pose, alogicals are forced to draw inferences.
This is an article that I would highly suggest to everyone.