Biblical World View graduate ser June 2006
Strategy For a Biblical World View
Little three year old watching his mother pour “fibric soften into the laundary…later came and got bottle and poured into the fish bowl—“My fish softened to death.”
We are engaged today in a battle between worldviews.
When did the war on terrorism begin?
--the answer lies in competing “worldviews”
What you have to understand about the Islamo-fascist movement is that what they are looking at is a war that started in the seventh century and is continuing today. We don’t think that way. We think it’s September 11 to today. “Oh, man! Four years of this is terrible!” That’s what Americans are saying. Muslims are thinking about this as centuries old.
You have to understand that many Muslims are still smarting over the fact that their armies were defeated just short of Paris at Poitiers in 732 (halting Islam’s advance in Europe). Crusades, then counter-Crusades, and so on until eventually the armies of the Ottoman Empire got as far as Vienna in 1683. Bear this in mind: It was a decisive battle when the Polish and German infantry turned back the Turks at Vienna. Do you know what day it was in 1683? September 11.
If you tell me that bin Laden just picked that date out of the air, I’ve got swampland in Alaska to sell you later on.
Bin Laden knew exactly what he was doing. He was resuming the war. He was avenging the defeat of Muslim armies that happened four hundred years ago.
There’s a book called Terror and Liberalism by Paul Berman, an eminent scholar. In that book, Berman describes the work of one Sayyid Qutb, an Egyptian radical arrested in 1954 and executed in 1966, who wrote the book In the Shade of the Qur’an, which was published in 1970. He had lived in Colorado, so he knew American culture and the West. His basic thesis was that the West was totally corrupt, that Christianity had failed, that Christianity failed to bring in the reign of God. The Christians have had their turn, and now they must be destroyed because they are totally decadent.
Qutb was fundamentally influenced by a lot of German and French writers in the pre-Hitler period, the same influencers who brought post-modernism to America: Heidegger, Derrida, all of these intellectuals who were so angry at the West. And Qutb read all of this. He read anti-Semitic, anti-Zionist literature and Nazi existentialist literature.
Here’s the interesting thing if you want to know whether or not a worldview makes a difference: This brilliant but paranoid man was executed in 1966. He’s gone. But his brother, Muhammad Qutb, fled Egypt and became a professor at a university in Saudi Arabia, and one of his star pupils was none other than Osama bin Laden.
We are in a struggle of life and death. My great fear is that Americans won’t get it.
And the hope is that Christians like us who want to defend the truth will understand it because, at root, it is a religious conflict.
Cultural war…battle of worldviews!
Illustr. - In a wealthy suburb of Indianapolis, a group of high school students were asked, "Was Adolf Hitler wrong in murdering millions of Jews?" They said yes. The interviewer then asked them why. They did not realize that their response was chilling.
"Well, you see," they said, "Hitler was defeated by the Allies. And in war, like everything else, the victor gets to define reality. The Allies determined that what Hitler had done was wrong. Therefore, he was wrong."
These students all came from fine Christian homes, so there was no excuse for them to be ignorant of the moral implications of that reply. Only one student differed. "I think Hitler would have been wrong, even if he had won the war and brainwashed everyone into believing he was right." This lone student could articulate moral absolute.
Ultimately our battle is not against flesh and blood.
At stake are the hearts and souls of America’s youth, who are leaving the faith at an unprecedented rate.
(Statistics tell us that we retain only around 3-7% of young people in our churches after they graduate high school.)
We (Christians) must understand and defend a Biblical worldview in all of life.
Furthermore, we must impart this Biblical worldview to the youth who will lead the next generation.
Paul says, "See to it that no one takes you captive, through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world, rather than on Christ." - Colossians 2:8
3 PHILOSOPHIES ARE DECEIVING YOUNG PEOPLE AS WELL AS MANY ADULTS IN AMERICA TODAY.
ONE - NO ONE CAN SAY WHAT IS RIGHT AND WHAT IS WRONG.
Students today say, "Maybe you think adultery, abortion or homosexuality is wrong, but who are you to decide for everyone else?" *
--according to a Gallup Poll, 82% of college students today say they believe in no absolute truths.
It really is "anything goes" out there. Morality has been reduced to "every man for himself."
Sailors==When do you cry…”everyman for himself?”….When the ship is sinking!!
Right and wrong is no longer based on absolutes but on individual opinion.
To illustrate, Dr. Jeff Myers relates the following example. "When one of my (college) professors proclaimed, ’There are no absolute truths,’ I asked him, ’Professor, are you sure?’
He said, ’Yes, I’m sure.’
’Are you absolutely sure?’
He stared at me. ’You’re very clever,’ he said, ’If I say there are no absolutes, then that is an absolute statement. Let me revise my remarks. There is one absolute, which is this: There are no absolutes.’"
"The careless logic of his reply stunned me. He refused to see the truth. This should not surprise Christians, however.
ex. Lady crossing the street –3 options…help her/ignore her/push her into the traffic!
The Moral Law….WE BREAK IT!
- \\ Proverbs 4:19 says, ’The way of the wicked is like deep darkness. They do not even know what makes them stumble.’"
Without a moral compass, people cannot make rational decisions about what is right and wrong for themselves or for society. *
**We can’t decide if an unborn baby is a human being or a blob of tissue because we have listened to the rhetoric of the "politically correct" instead of checking out the medical facts that life begins at conception - an absolute supported completely by the Bible.
>> As so, on subjects ranging from abortion to homosexuality to euthanasia to human cloning to sex before marriage we have become a nation led by what is popular.
>> We have let the evening news or the Hollywood elite or what is being taught in the halls of academia form our value system rather than moral absolutes that have stood the test of time.
When he stood before Pilate for questioning (John 18:37), Jesus said, "For this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me."
And Pilate answered, "What is truth?" Good question. It’s still being asked by millions of people today.
Where do you go for the right answer? Where can you get to the bottom line?
Is everything really so vague?
Isn’t there someplace you can go for solid answers to the big questions of life?
Psalm 119:160 - "All your words are true (O Lord); all your righteous laws are eternal."
TWO - NO ONE CAN KNOW ANYTHING FOR SURE.
…to train students in wilderness survival. On the last day of our trips, the guides left camp and told students to meet them at the trailhead, using a map and compass. The students were in the middle of nowhere, but they always found the way back.
… Imagine what would happen, however, if the young man with the compass had an enormous magnet strapped to his back that said, ’I am the North Pole.’ Without a fixed point of reference, those students might still be wandering in the Colorado wilderness!"
Likewise, we have thousands of people in our culture who have fixed their point of reference on a "moving North Pole" that changes with trends in society.
Families are disintegrating, marriages are failing at a 50% clip both inside and outside the church, the former President of the United States has "re-defined" sexual intercourse for us, the State of Vermont has sanctioned same-sex marriage.
What has happened?
We’ve got our eyes on a "moving North Star."
God’s Word used to be "true North."
We began to follow our own "North Stars", rather than be held to one standard of truth. The results have been devastating.
THREE - THE ONLY MEANING IN LIFE IS WHAT YOU CREATE FOR YOURSELF.
We live in perhaps the most self-centered age in our nation’s history.
….Everyone seems to be saying, "I have a right not to have your existence affect my life."
Is your life all about you?
parents and grandparents—share guilt—when we shower our children with too much of the material….soften them to death!!
** What will you have when you finally reach the end of your imaginary rainbow of self-fulfillment?
If it’s all about you, you’ll just find pot full of fool’s gold.
Are you really so arrogant as to think that you have the power to create meaning for your life?
Jesus said (John 10:10), "I have come that you might have life, and have it to the full."
Could it be that Jesus is the missing "peace" in the puzzle of your life?
TAKING EVERY THOUGHT CAPTIVE
These 3 deceptive philosophies are taking young people and adults captive at an astonishing rate.
We must reclaim this lost ground be developing a strong, effective Biblical worldview.
The apostle Paul wrote, "We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God. And we take captive every thought, to make it obedient to Christ." - 2 Corinthians 10:5
The Bible teaches that to take every thought captive we must…
FIRST, EMBRACE THE TRUTH FOUND IN JESUS CHRIST.
In John 14:6, Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth and the life."
This is indeed a deep statement, for the great philosophers have struggled to answer three questions:
What is good?
What is true?
And finally, what is beautiful?
- In Jesus’ day, "the way" referred to a moral course of action.
By claiming to be "the way," Jesus claimed to be the standard for right and wrong.
When He said He was "the truth" He said that the nature and character of God defined all reality, and that He himself was God made flesh.
When He claimed to be "the life" Jesus established himself as the standard for that which was worthwhile, that which was beautiful.
In this simple statement, Jesus revealed himself to be the answer to the philosopher’s quest.
*** Only one pursuit in all of life yields unending satisfaction: ***a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
THE SECOND WAY TO TAKE EVERY THOUGHT CAPTIVE IS TO SEE THE CONFLICTS OF OUR AGE AS A BATTLE BETWEEN COMPETING VIEWS OF GOD.
One says that God created us, and He gives us purpose.
Since we are made in His image, we ought to reflect His nature and character in every sphere of life!!
Though this may be an oversimplification, there are basically two fundamental worldviews with regard to the subject of TRUTH.
These two views can be compared to playdough and a rock.
They are two ways to view the world in which we live.
The playdough worldview sees truth as flexible, changing, unstable, mysterious, and constantly fluctuating.
The Rock perspective sees truth as something that is hard, inflexible, rigid, thus providing a sense of permanence, constancy, solidity, and security.
No matter which worldview we happen to place ourselves, it is vital that we understand that we all live in an increasingly playdough culture.
"How do we redeem a culture?
The answer is simple: from the inside out.
From the individual to the family to the community, and then outward in ever widening ripples.
We must begin by understanding what it means to live by Christian worldview principles in our own behavior and choices. Unless we do, we will interpret the biblical commands according to the spirit of the age and will therefore be conformed to the world rather than to God's Word"
A Biblical worldview is not just a view of the world, however. It is a view for the world.