16 Apr What is a Worldview?
What is a worldview? Simply stated it’s your view on the philosophy of life in this world! Who are we, where did we come from, why are we here, and where are we going? Your answers to these questions define your worldview.
Ask people what their worldview is and you will get all kinds of answers, some good, some bad, and some absolutely bazaar. You will hear all the religious worldviews, and you will hear things like, “I just live by the golden rule,” and, “Eat, drink and be merry,” and, “Live and let live.” One man said, “I am God.” Other people say, “Nothing is real. Life is an illusion.” One man asked, “How do I know I even exist?” And on it goes.
There are many people who do not consciously have a worldview. They wander aimlessly in life apparently content to live with no plan, no direction, no goals, and no purpose. They live day-to-day just accepting whatever life brings their way – like a ship without a rudder, tossed about by the wind and the waves. I remember asking a waitress, “I’d like to get your opinion on something.” She said, “I’m sorry, I don’t think,” and she walked away!
A.W, Tozer once said, “What comes to your mind when you think about God is the most important thing about you.” There are atheists, agnostics, polytheists, pantheists, deists, those who adhere to the strictest form of unitarian monotheism (those that deny the Christian doctrine of the triune nature of God) and the list goes on and on. Can they all be right? Logically, they are either all wrong or one of them is right and the others are wrong.
What is the Biblical worldview? Simply stated it’s found in Genesis 1:1,
In the begining God created the heavens and the earth.
In Colossians 1:15-19, speaking of Jesus Christ, we are told,
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.
Then in Colossians 2:8, Paul warns us,
“Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power.”
What are the philosophical deceptions of men that Paul speaks of? Here are just a few,
Rationalism: Rationalism puts full trust in the conclusions of our logical mind. “I think, therefore I am” is a common quote from Descartes. We tend to think that our thoughts is who we are and that we are the sum total of our thoughts. We feel that we have to have absolute trust in our thoughts, or rationalizations, and to defend them as if they were our own flesh and blood.
This approach tends to make us ego-centric as we think our thoughts are the truth and others who do not share them are incorrect and need to be taught our way of rationalizing the world. This view is in conflict with the Christian world view in that God’s will becomes secondary to our will. It becomes “Our will be done” instead of “Thy will be done.” It also leads us to many other “isms” that dominate our way of thinking.
Empiricism: Empiricism assumes that the basis of knowledge is our experience from sense perception. This is the basis of the scientific method. This world view assumes that it is through the systematic study of what we know from the senses that yields us the absolute truth. It rejects the idea that truth is a divine revelation recorded for us in Scripture.
Humanism/Individualism: Humanism and individualism is based on the assumption that truth and morality is sought through rational means. It assumes individual autonomy and the idea that each individual must find his or her own truth. This conflicts with the Biblical World View in that it rejects a dependence on faith, the supernatural and divinely revealed texts. The authority of Christ is rejected in favor of the subjective judgement of each individual. It leads us to secularism where the state is pre-eminent over the church.
Relativism: Relativism maintains that the basis of all judgement is relative, differing according to the situation, person or events one is dealing with. It assumes that the beliefs and religion of a person or group of persons is “true” for them, but not necessarily for others. Under this set of assumptions there is no religion that is universally or exclusively true. Likewise there are no moral absolutes, no objective ethical positions that are right or wrong. All moral values are true for some but not for others. This conflicts with the Biblical World View that Christianity is the absolute truth.
Modernism: Modernism rejects all tradition. It assumes that what has gone before and the previous age is the “Dark Ages.” This view discredits the Holy Scriptures.
Christians reject all these “isms” in favor of the Biblical World View. Clearly, the Christian World View is the only one that provides a satisfactory explanation of who we are as a race, the origin of life, the meaning of life, the question of evil, and the reality of the after-life. For any who would question this position based on preconceived notions, I suggest you begin by taking an objective look at the world in which we live. Clearly, we live in the most dangerous time in the history of mankind. Interestingly, dire straights in which we find ourselves has been predicted thousands of years ago, in the Bible. And I’m not talking about vague generalities, I talking about specific details. That is how Christians know they serve the true and living God. Only someone with omniscience can predict the future with 100% accuracy. No other so-called, “Holy Book”, can make that claim. Even the counterfeits serve to vindicate the Scriptures because the Bible warns of them as well. The New Testament tells us there will be: false prophets, false apostles, false brothers, tares among the wheat and wolves in sheep’s clothing!
In the last century alone, between World War I, World War II, hundreds of civil wars, combined with the mass murderers like Mou, Hitler, Stalin, and many others, all totaled, some 550,000,000 people were killed. That is more than all of the last 6,000 years of recorded history combined. Then, we started the 21st century with a bang on September 11th, 2001. The tribulation that is coming on the world is of Biblical proportion. It is coming burning like a furnace and nothing can stop it. The next world war will be the war that ends all war. God is going to let sin run its course so when it’s all over, no one will question His right to rule the universe, His integrity, or His love, ever again. The good news is, God’s plan of redemption has been in place even before the foundation of the world. For more on how we know the Bible is true, and what the plan of redemption is all about, go to our tab under that title, “How do we know the Bible is true?” Your eternal destiny depends on getting this one right.