Logic in the Bible

By Terry W. Benton

While some modern brethren have declared that the logic of "necessary inference" has been made up in recent years by "church of Christ preachers", the Bible shows that this kind of logic goes back to communication from God and man from the beginning. If anyone should be credited with the origin of such logic, it should be God. The failure to use logic goes to the devil and his followers.

A clear example of reasoning from evidence to "necessary inference" is seen clearly in Hebrews 7. Paul reasoned that:

  1. Melchizedek was greater than Abraham.
  2. Levi is not as great as Abraham and certainly not as great as Melchizedek.
  3. If the Levitical priesthood and Law of Moses had been sufficient, there would have been no need for David to prophesy about another priest who would be a forever priest after the order of Melchizedek in Psalm 110, at a time when the Law and Levitical priesthood was in operation.

Then the writer then argues to the logical conclusion that was "of necessity" (a necessary inference). He pointed to a great logical deduction: In order for Jesus to be a legitimate priest, the law would have to be changed (Hebrews 7:12). That was an inescapable conclusion since Jesus was not from the tribe of Levi. In order to change the priesthood there would have to logically be a "change also of the Law." Statements of prophecy plus the example of Abraham paying tithes to Melchizedek formed the evidence from which several necessary inferences were drawn.

Another point of logic was made on the basis that Jesus was from the tribe of Judah "of which Moses spoke nothing concerning priesthood." When the Law spoke about priesthood and designated the tribe of Levi, it did not have to start a list of "thou shalt not get priests from Judah" and "thou shalt not get priests from Gad", etc. Silence about other tribes meant only that permission was not granted to other tribes to become priests. There is a logical rule that silence is not authority to act. Jesus was not authorized to be a priest on earth because silence about priests from Judah is not authority for priests from Judah.

The authority of Jesus to be a priest after a different order comes only with a "change of Law" and a verification that Jesus has the credentials of a "forever" priesthood according to the order of Melchizedek. The use of example and statements to bring about the logical necessary inference is what GOD has taught us. It did not originate with so-called "church of Christ preachers". In fact, failure to properly employ and use these things is a clear indication that the critic does not know the scriptures.