The Outsider Test.....

From Paul Manta's link below in "Christianity and Philosophy" who wrote:
Paul taught in Ephesians 4:17-24 that the Gentiles “walk in the vanity of their mind, being darkened in their understanding” because of their “ignorance and hardened hearts,” while a completely different epistemic condition characterizes the Christian, one who has been “renewed in the spirit of your mind” and has “learned Christ” (for “the truth is in Jesus”). The “wisdom of the world” evaluates God’s wisdom as foolishness, while the believer understands that worldly wisdom “has been made foolish” (1 Cor. 1:17-25; 3:18-20). The basic commitments of the believer and unbeliever are fundamentally opposed to each other.

Thus Paul refers to thought which opposes the faith as “vain babblings of knowledge falsely so called” (1 Tim. 6:20), and he insists that the wise disputers of this age have been made foolish and put to shame by those called “foolish” (1 Cor. 1:20, 27). Unbelievers become “vain in their reasonings”; “professing themselves to be wise, they became fools” (Rom. 1:21, 22).

In Colossians 2:3 Paul explains that “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” are deposited in Christ—in which case we must be on the alert against philosophy which is “not after Christ,” lest it rob us of this epistemic treasure (v. 8). The Old Testament proverb had put it this way: “The fear of Jehovah is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Prov. 1:7). Accordingly, if the apologist is going to cast down “reasonings and every high thing exalted against the knowledge of God” he must first bring “every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5), making Christ pre-eminent in all things (Col. 1:18). Upon the platform of God’s revealed truth, the believer can authoritatively declare the riches of knowledge unto believers.

Does this description of the thinking of an unbeliever confirm or deny what I have been saying, that Christianity must devaluate philosophy in favor of believing in historical knowledge of a "special revelation" in the Bible? And if a Christian must place reason below his faith, then how can he properly evaluate his faith in the first place, since the presumption of faith we start out with, will most likely be the presumption of faith we end with? Since the presumption of faith we start out with is something we accept by, what John Hick calls, the "accidents of history" (i.e., where and when we are born), how likely is it that the Christian will ever truly evaluate his or her faith? How is it possible to rationally evaluate the Christian faith when the Christian can only do so from within the presuppositions of that faith in the first place--presuppositions which he or she basically accepted by the "accidents of history."

So let me propose something I call The Outsider Test: If you were born in Saudi Arabia, you would be a Muslim right now, say it isn't so? That is a cold hard fact. Dare you deny it? Since this is so, or at least 99% so, then the proper method to evaluate your religious beliefs is with a healthy measure of skepticism. Test your beliefs as if you were an outsider to the faith you are evaluating. If your faith stands up under muster, then you can have your faith. If not, abandon it, for any God who requires you to believe correctly when we have this extremely strong tendency to believe what we were born into, surely should make the correct faith pass the outsider test. If your faith cannot do this, then the God of your faith is not worthy of being worshipped.