Answer a Fool?

Proverbs 26 4-5 b

Q. Prov 26:4 tells us do not answer a fool. V 5 then tells us to answer a fool. Isn’t this a contradiction? You can’t speak from both sides of your mouth!

A. No, it is not a contradiction, but a paradox. This passage tells us to be wise by responding as the situation dictates.

* Prov 26:4-5 Do not answer a fool according to his folly, Or you will also be like him. Answer a fool as his folly deserves, That he not be wise in his own eyes.

In general, don’t waste time arguing with a fool, or you’ll descend to his level arguing back and forth in a silly squabble. Ignore him.

However, if it becomes necessary that you do have to answer him, use his own arguments back on him. Let him have a taste of his own medicine, so he’ll know how stupid he really is. Otherwise he’ll think he’s so smart.

Proverbs 26 4-5 c

So it depends on the situation, not a hard-and-fast black-and-white.

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The Incarnation a Contradiction?

hypostatic union 6

Q. I don’t understand you Christians. You say Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man. Isn’t that a contradiction? 100% God leaves 0% man. 100% man means 0% God. You can’t have 200% of a single person. Don’t you mean 50-50, or some other combination adding up to 100%? You can’t have it both ways!

A. I’ve heard the accusation that the Incarnation is a contradiction in other forms. For example, as God Christ is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent etc. As man, Christ is not omnipotent, not omniscient, not omnipresent etc. You can’t be both at the same time. Isn’t this a contradiction? You can’t have your cake and eat it too!

No, this is not a contradiction. When we say Jesus is fully God, we mean He has all the fullness of Deity:
* Col 1:19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him,
* Col 2:9 For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form,

Although fullness means 100%, it is not additive. For example, I am 100% my father’s son, and 100% my children’s father, but that does not mean I am 200% of a father-son hybrid. You cannot sum them.

Secondly, according to the law of non-contradiction, in order for there to be a real contradiction, something needs to be both true and not true at the same time in the same respects. Otherwise you only have an apparent contradiction or paradox, not a true one.

hypostatic union 7

The Incarnation states that Jesus the Son of God took on human flesh i.e. became man. He thus has two natures, a divine nature and a human nature. His divine nature has infinite power, knowledge, and is not limited in space and time. His human nature, however, is finite and has limited power, knowledge, and subject to limitations of space and time. So He is at the same time God in His divine nature, and human (not God) in His human nature. There is no contradiction as we are referring to two different natures. It would only be a contradiction if He is both God and not-God at the same time within His divine nature, or both man and not-man at the same time within His human nature, but that’s not what the doctrine states, hence no contradiction.