There is no free thought, there are no free-thinkers.
The description “free thinking” is often used to praise those who are up-to-date, those who exalt reason as the hope for humanity. “Free thinkers” criticise others for having limits, but these critics simply do not understand their own boundaries.
Because everyone and every thinker has limits, boundaries they refuse to cross.
Here’s an example. Leonard Susskind wrote The Black Hole War about an amiable disagreement between physicists as they tried to figure out black holes. Susskind says this about Stephen Hawking:
Hawking’s logic was so clear … The reasoning was persuasive, but the conclusion was absurd. (p.212)
Susskind refused to accept the argument, even when he could not identify the precise problem. There was a limit to Susskind’s reasoning. His limit was right, and it turns out Hawking was wrong in this case. Without the limit, physics would be worse off, knowing less about black holes.
Limits to our thinking exist for everyone. So Christians should consider what our limits are – they’re much more important that black holes. Romans 3 is a great place to learn, because some opponents to the gospel argue themselves over the limit. They go too far, way too far, and into danger. They suggest God is a liar, or that he is unrighteous, or that he is not judge of the world.
What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? By no means! Let God be true though every one were a liar (Romans 3:3-4).
But if our unrighteousness serves to show the righteousness of God, what shall we say? That God is unrighteous to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.) By no means! For then how could God judge the world? (Romans 3:5-6).
Is God a liar, or unrighteous? Will God not bother to judge? Paul says: Your conclusion is absurd. Never! Don’t go near that, do not even think it. The ‘human way’ of thinking is a sad perversion of real thought.
Christian thought will never conclude wrong or evil about God. If our thinking does conclude that God is ‘wrong’ in any way, it’s a guarantee that our thinking is way off.