The following is an excerpt from STR Enhanced Solid Ground July 2012 by Greg Koukl.

“Jesus never condemned homosexuality.” 

Though this is only a single sentence, it’s actually a full argument in shorthand, streamlined for brevity. The conclusion didn’t need to be stated. I got the point. I was wrong for attacking homosexuality on moral grounds. Because Jesus never condemned homosexuality, it is therefore morally acceptable behavior.

“Are you saying that if Jesus doesn’t
specifically condemn something, then
He condones it?” 

Notice, though, that the conclusion is not the only thing taken for granted here. The minor premise is stated and the conclusion is assumed, but what of the major premise, our first step in the argument? The unspoken major premise—the invisible wall
holding up this argument—contained a serious flaw that went undetected.

We can determine if this is a problem by asking what kind of major premise is needed to make this argument work. The full argument would have to look something like this: “Whatever Jesus did not explicitly condemn is morally acceptable. Jesus never explicitly condemned homosexuality. Therefore, homosexuality is morally acceptable.”

The form of this argument is good; nothing amiss here. But look closer at the major premise. It seems this statement is clearly false. It’s not true that whatever Jesus didn’t directly condemn is morally acceptable. Jesus never explicitly condemned slavery, child abuse, wife-beating, or even gaybashing, for that matter, but this proves nothing about His moral opinion on those issues.

Many Christians are caught flat-footed here, sensing something is wrong, but not knowing what it is. Sometimes we have to look more closely to identify the unspoken premise before we can see the problem clearly. In this case, that can be done by making the invisible wall visible.

Page 6 of STR's July 2012 issue of Solid Ground - 

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