— 687 —
Reason and Faith not opposite.
      §24. There is another use of the Word Reason, wherein it is
opposed to Faith; which though it be in it self a very improper way of
speaking, yet common Use has so authorized it, that it would be
folly either to oppose or hope to remedy it: Only I think it may not
be amiss to take notice, that however Faith be opposed to Reason,
Faith is nothing but a firm Assent of the Mind: which if it be regu-
lated, as is our Duty, cannot be afforded to any thing, but upon good
Reason; and so cannot be opposite to it. He that believes, without
having any Reason for believing, may be in love with his own
Fancies; but neither seeks Truth as he ought, nor pays the Obedi-
ence due to his Maker, who would have him use those discerning
— 688 —
Faculties he has given him, to keep him out of Mistake and Errour.
He that does not this to the best of his Power, however he some-
times lights on Truth, is in the right but by chance; and I know not
whether the luckiness of the Accident will excuse the irregularity
of his proceeding. This at least is certain, that he must be account-
able for whatever Mistakes he runs into: whereas he that makes use
of the Light and Faculties GOD has given him, and seeks sincerely
to discover Truth, by those Helps and Abilities he has, may have
this satisfaction in doing his Duty as a rational Creature, that though
he should miss Truth, he will not miss the Reward of it. For he
governs his Assent right, and places it as he should, who in any
Case or Matter whatsoever, believes or disbelieves, according as
Reason directs him. He that does otherwise, transgresses against
his own Light, and misuses those Faculties, which were given him
to no other end, but to search and follow the clearer Evidence, and
greater Probability. But since Reason and Faith are by some Men
opposed, we will so consider them in the following Chapter.
Locke Hum IV, 17, §24, pp. 687-688