What is the law of non-contradiction?


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In college classes across the world, young people are taught that there is “no truth.” Ironically, this statement itself makes a claim as to what is true. And if it is true that there is no truth then the statement is false. Understanding this basic chain of reasoning is the starting point of understanding logic and logic is how the discerning mind comes to know what is true.

This is important because we all have a worldview. We all have ideas of what is true and what is not true. What is possible and what is not possible. The problem is that only one worldview can be correct and that is… the correct worldview. See, this is necessarily true because the incorrect worldview cannot be the correct worldview. A thing cannot be both correct and incorrect at the same time. Similarly, a car cannot be blue and not blue at the same time. A man cannot be running and not running at the same time. These are contradictions. Contradictions are two opposing statements which means that they are opposites, they oppose one another. As we apply this to reality a person cannot be both alive and dead at the same time and in the same sense. It is one thing to say a man is both “alive” physically and “dead” spiritually at the same time but this is not in the same sense. One sense refers to the physical and the other to the spiritual. So we see by this simple example that contradictions cannot exist in reality and therefore contradictions that we come across in reality must be identified in order to pursue the correct worldview. Therefore, when we come across a contradiction we have only 3 options- either one statement is true or the other is true but not both or both statements are false. This again exemplifies the law of non-contradiction.Thinkers as early as Aristotle were able to recognize this truth but long before Aristotle, men knew this to be true from even the moment Adam was created. He could not both exist and not exist at the same time and in the same sense.

The law of non contradiction is one of four basic principles of logic and it is so valuable to discovering truth that the great Enemy of God (whatever you may call him) has made sure that people ignore it and live in contradiction and argue from contradictory standpoints and see nothing wrong with it. At times I will engage people who will make brazenly contradictory statements and when approached with their contradictions they will say, “I don’t see it.” I imagine a man standing on the train tracks of logic. A train is coming his way ready to destroy his position as I plead with him logically to move out of the way but he says to me…

“I don’t see it.”

Truth is no exception. Truth comes hurling at us like a train yet we cannot see it because our worldview is incorrect. We have developed a worldview that allows us to accept contradictions and think nothing of it. Rather than questions our own position we dig in our heels and question the position of others. We allow ourselves to hold onto contradictions but the moment someone else’s position contradicts ours we become deeply offended by their ignorance.  Interesting.

A thing cannot be both true and not true at the same time so what we as thinking adults have the challenge to do is discover what is true and what is not true in order for us to develop the correct worldview. This does not mean that all we have to do is discover good arguments for what is true and what is not true. No. The debate on God’s existence or whether abortion is good or bad has great minds on both sides- both forming arguments as to its rightness or wrongness; its correctness or incorrectness.  Unfortunately today more then ever our leaders know so much about the world but we as a population know very little about logic. As a result, we believe in falsehoods and we love every minute of it because we would rather live in contradiction (which is at worst to say we live in a lie or at best to say we live illogically) then to admit that we are wrong.

Most people will not point out your contradictions because they have become so imbecile they don’t recognize them. I am not one of those people. Instead, my goal is to examine your argument and look for contradictions because when I find them I know that I have identified a point that could not possibly be true. It is at this juncture where you must decide whether you are the imbecile or the Aristotle. Will you recognize your contradiction in wisdom and contemplate your position or will you dig in your heels and commit to your folly and self-deception? You can’t do both- that would be a contradiction.

For more info on contradiction please view the following links:

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/aristotle-noncontradiction/#1

http://carm.org/dictionary-law-of-non-contradiction

http://www.spurgeon.org/~phil/articles/lawofcon.htm

http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=000000&IS2=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=theapo02-20&o=1&p=8&l=as4&m=amazon&f=ifr&ref=ss_til&asins=1581345615

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5 Responses to “What is the law of non-contradiction?”

  1. Megan Matzke Says:

    So that we don’t get sidetracked about abortion, here are a couple contradictions within the bible:

    JOH 10:30 I and my Father are one.
    JOH 14:28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.
    So are they equals or is the Father greater?

    GEN 7:2 Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female.
    GEN 7:8 Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of every thing that creepeth upon the earth, GEN 7:9 There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah.
    Did the clean beasts go by twos or did they go in sevens?

    PRO 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.
    ECC 1:18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.
    1CO 1:19: “For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.”
    So do we strive to be wise? Or will the wise be destroyed?

    ISA 14:21 Prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities.
    DEU 24:16 The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.
    Do we die for the sins of our fathers or only for own sins?

    PSA 92:12: “The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree.”
    ISA 57:1: “The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart.”
    Do the righteous perish or do they flourish?

    There are contradictions everywhere, that does not make the entire thing false. Just as there are those who are pro-choice who may contradict themselves, and there are those who don’t. It does not invalidate all arguments just as these little contradictions within the bible do not make its teachings invalid.

  2. owenandtheresa Says:

    Every contradiction you mentioned are not contradictions but instead only misunderstood because of lack of reading the context or lack of reading the rest of the bible which may explain a doctrine or part of the Jewish culture, etc. I’ve copied and pasted your verses and questions and then pasted answers to each afterward.
    JOH 10:30 I and my Father are one.
    JOH 14:28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.
    So are they equals or is the Father greater?
    This is scripture that verifies the trinity. God is triune—three in one. God the father is the greatest, Jesus, the son chooses to submit to God the father in order to save us , and the holy spirit is the spirit of God that works to empower and lead believers and non-believers to Him. If you read the gospels and the letters to the early Christians, the doctrine of the trinity will make more sense to you.
    GEN 7:2 Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female.
    GEN 7:8 Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of every thing that creepeth upon the earth, GEN 7:9 There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah.
    Did the clean beasts go by twos or did they go in sevens?
    Genesis 6:19-20 simply instructs Noah to preserve two of every kind. Genesis 7:2-3 is additional information where seven of the clean animals were to be taken and two of every other kind. The reason for this is that the extra animals were for sacrifice. “Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar,” (Gen. 8:20).
    Logically, to have seven pairs also means that there are two pairs, since the two are included in the seven. If one verse said take only one pair and another verse said seven pairs, that would be a contradiction
    PRO 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.
    ECC 1:18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.
    1CO 1:19: “For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.”
    So do we strive to be wise? Or will the wise be destroyed?
    Context is vital here. Proverbs 4:7 is simply stating that a person, on the human level, needs to acquire wisdom. It is good to seek to be wise. Solomon is teaching his son, who is a believer in God and His word, to avoid foolishness and seek wisdom. Of course, true wisdom is acquired from God’s word.
    In Ecc 1:18— Solomon realizes that with his wisdom he has learned about all the painful truths about life. Sure we should seek wisdom because it is good to be wise. But yes, you may learn many things you don’t like. Haven’t you ever heard of the saying—ignorance is bliss?
    The context of 1 Corinthians 1:19 deals with comparing the wisdom of God with the wisdom of man. Paul writes that the wisdom of man is foolishness compared to the wisdom of God. It will be destroyed. In other words, the unbelievers who try and defy God or proclaim that God is not true or that the Bible is not true will all be proven false. This will either happen in this life or on the day of judgment.
    ISA 14:21 Prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities.
    DEU 24:16 The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.
    Do we die for the sins of our fathers or only for own sins?
    Covenantally, when a father misleads his family, the effects of that misleading are often felt for generations. This is because the father is being covenantally unfaithful and God has stipulated that there are punishments to breaking the covenant with God. That is the case with these verses that deal with the sins visited upon the children. If a father rejects the covenant of God and takes his family into sin and rejects God, the children will suffer the consequences, often for several generations. Whether or not this is fair is not the issue. Sin is in the world, consequences of sin affected many generations.
    On the other hand, Deuteronomy 24:16 is dealing with legal matters as the context 24:6-19 shows.
    PSA 92:12: “The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree.”
    ISA 57:1: “The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart.”
    Do the righteous perish or do they flourish?
    The righteous perish just like the wicked. We all live and we all die. In Psalm 92, if you read the context he goes on to explain how the righteous flourish in heaven, after this life. 
    If you have any other questions about contradictions—I suggest reading the bible. If not, check out carm.org for explanations and answers by biblical scholars.

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  4. Karen Walker Says:

    I think this is craziness. The bible was written by many people over a long period of time. Stories that were handed down by word of mouth until someone was astute enough to write it down. Even then, verses were added later to make some stories more interesting, thereby any part of it can be true or untrue. There are also more books of the Bible, that are not part of the ‘good book’, like “The Infancy of Jesus” and “Armageddon”. It cannot be taken literally and we are certainly not in a position to say for sure what any one person meant as they were documenting their belief a couple of thousand years ago. The fact that you are all ‘arguing’ over what was actually the ‘truth’ is insane. Who the hell (yup I said it) is anyone to try to determine the actual word of God. How arrogant. Religion is a man made institution to control the will of human beings. If we were truly created by God, then God is great and needs no words to speak to us….God speaks through the Holy Spirit. If you listen with a pure heart, you will hear the whispers. God does not need your lowly words to communicate. He is GREAT!


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