A Biblical Worldview

     Christian-worldviewA worldview is a biased perspective on life.  It is a mental framework of beliefs that guide our understanding of what is.  It’s the assumptions we employ to help us make sense of the world, ourselves, and our experiences.  Early in life—when our perception of the world is being shaped—we are influenced by the worldviews of family, friends, and surrounding culture.  As we grow older, we are confronted with different and opposing worldviews via religious and educational institutions, literature, movies, music and art.  At some point in our development—it’s different for each person—we choose what we believe and why.  Our worldview is important because it’s the basis for our values which directs our behavior, relationships, money habits, social and political decisions, and everything we do.  A well developed worldview considers the existence of God (Person or force?), the origin of the universe (intelligent creation or accidental bang?), human existence (where we came from and what we are?), the purpose for life (do we exist for a reason or by chance?), human morals (are values absolute or relative?), the problem of evil (is evil real or merely a construct of the mind), and the future (heaven/hell or nothing).  A biblical worldview answers all these concerns.  Here are some considerations regarding a biblical worldview:

     Berenstain Bear's Naturalistic WorldviewFaith is at the heart of the biblical worldview. Every worldview operates with some faith assumptions.  Even the atheist has faith, most of them believing the universe began with a spontaneous bang and that everything is the product of matter, motion, time and chance.  They believe this beyond scientific verification (which requires observation and repeatable testing).  This purely materialistic worldview is sometimes found even in children’s literature such as the Berenstain Bears Nature Guide, which states that nature is “all that is, or was, or ever will be.”[1]  The Christian worldview operates by faith, and our faith is rooted in Scripture which provides insights into realities we could never know, except that God has spoken.  “By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible” (Heb. 11:3).  Developing a comprehensive and consistent biblical worldview takes a lifetime of learning and living (Rom. 12:1-2; 2 Tim. 3:16-17; 1 Pet. 2:2; 2 Pet. 3:18).  The final objective of a biblical worldview is love for God, love for others, and submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. 

     The Bible reveals the existence of God (Gen. 1:1) and portrays Him as Creator (Gen. 1:1-2:25). It also reveals His character, what He has done in history, what He is doing now and what He will do in the future.  God exists as Trinity (Matt. 28:19; 2 Cor. 13:14; 1 Pet. 1:2): God the Father (Gal. 1:1; Eph. 6:23; Phil. 2:11), God the Son (John 1:1, 14:18; 8:58; 20:28; Col. 2:9; Heb. 1:8), and God the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3-4; 1 Corinthians 2:11-12; 2 Corinthians 13:14).  All three Persons are co-equal, co-infinite, co-eternal, and worthy of all praise and service.  The three Persons of the God-head are one in essence (Deut. 6:4; Isa. 43:10; 44:6-8; 45:5, 18), sharing the exact same attributes.[2] 

     My Havanese - AriGod created the universe in six literal days (Gen. 1-2; Ex. 20:8-11). He created an open universe in which He continually operates in every detail, involving Himself in people’s lives, directing history for His glory.  The Lord assigns value and purpose to all His creation, whether rock or flower, wind or rain, light or darkness, cat or dog, etc.  From the biblical perspective I perceive my little Havanese as a part of God’s creation, having design and purpose because God created her to be what she is.  I know “a righteous man has regard for the life of his animal” (Pro 12:10); therefore, I feel responsible to care for my little dog.  “The character of a man is seen in the way he treats those under his care or at his mercy, even when they are animals.  This verse demonstrates that we are responsible to have dominion over the animals, while doing so in a way that reflects the tenderness of our Creator (Ps. 104:14, 27; 145:16; 147:8-9).”[3]

     God created mankind in His image, to think, feel and act (Gen. 1:26-27). God also created mankind for a purpose, to have a relationship with Him and other people, and to exercise responsible dominion over His creation, caring for plants and animals ( 1:26-30; cf. Deut. 25:4; Prov. 12:10).  As God’s unique creatures we find ourselves naturally bent Bookstoward art, music, literature, philosophy, science, mathematics, architecture, sports, and other activities that enrich the soul and glorify the Lord.  The Christian can engage in art and science to the glory of God, as this is consistent with Scripture.  As Christians living in God’s world, and understanding what the Scripture teaches about His creation, we are able to make sense of the world around us and enjoy the creation as God intended.  Knowing Scripture also allows us to understand and reject the sinful perversions of the arts and sciences that fallen men have corrupted.  Without God and Scripture to guide and give man purpose, man’s uniqueness is lost in the universe, as he is ultimately of no greater value than what he paints on the canvass or studies under the microscope.  Biblical thinkers know this to be true; because if there is no God and man is not unique (as the Bible teaches), then he is of no greater value than the tree, the rock, or the worm on a hook.  If there is no God, then man is a zero.  When he dies, his biological life is consumed by the material universe from which he came.  Consider this view of death by the atheist John Updike:

Without warning, David was visited by an exact vision of death: a long hole in the ground, no wider than your body, down which you were drawn while the white faces above recede. You try to reach them but your arms are pinned. Shovels pour dirt in your face. There you will be forever, in an upright position, blind and silent, and in time no one will remember you, and you will never be called by any angel. As strata of rock shift, your fingers elongate, and your teeth are distended sideways in a great underground grimace indistinguishable from a strip of chalk. And the earth tumbles on, and the sun expires, an unaltering darkness reigns where once there were stars.[4]

     God is the absolute standard for right and wrong, and He expects mankind to conform to that which He has revealed about Himself in Scripture (Ps. 11:7; 34:15-16; Lam. 1:18; Dan. 9:14; Hos. 14:9; Zep. 3:4). If there is no God, and no written revelation of His character and will, then men are left only with their conflicting opinions and there is no final arbiter to determine what is right or what is wrong.  However, God has spoken in the Bible, and what He says about men and their actions is the final basis for correct thinking concerning morals and behavior. 

     Evil exists in connection with the willful creatures who produce it. Evil first came into existence in the angelic realm when Lucifer rebelled against God (Isa. 14:12-14; Ezek. 28:12-18).  Adam and Eve introduced sin and evil into the human realm when they followed Satan and rebelled against God (Gen. 2:16-17; 3:1-7).  All humanity is corrupt in Adam, inclined toward sin, spiritually dead and powerless to change their spiritually fallen condition (Rom. 3:23; 5:6-12; 1 Cor. 15:21-22).  God alone corrects the problem of sin and evil through the cross of Christ.  Evil will come to an end in the eternal state when God destroys the current heavens and earth and creates a new heavens and earth where righteousness dwells (2 Pet. 3:13; Rev. 20:10-15; 21-22). 

     God is actively involved in the affairs of mankind. God has an agenda, a plan He formed before the creation of the world, and He is currently executing that plan according to His sovereign will and for His own glory (Ps. 33:11; Isa. 14:24; 25:1; 46:9-11).  Within God’s plan, He extends hope for the lost.  The Bible reveals God’s plan of salvation through His Son, Jesus Christ, who took upon Himself true humanity (Gen. 3:15; John 1:1, 14), born of a virgin (Isa. 7:14; Matt. 1:18-25), lived righteously according to the Mosaic Law (Matt. 5:17-19; Gal. 4:4), never sinned (Heb. 4:15), died a substitutionary death on a cross (Mark 10:45; Rom. 5:8), was buried and rose to life on the third day (1 Cor. 15:3-4), and ascended to heaven where He is currently interceding for the saints (Acts 1:10-11; Rom. 8:34).  Salvation is a gracious and free gift to all who will accept it by faith alone in Christ alone (John 3:16; 1 Cor. 15:3-4; Gal. 2:16; Eph. 2:8-9; Phil. 3:9; Tit. 3:5).

     Jesus Christ will return again to rule the earth (Rev. 19:11-16; 20:1-6). There is a future hope for those who trust Christ as Savior and look forward to His return in which He suppresses all sinful rebellion and establishes His reign on the earth.  This will be a time of righteousness and goodness for all those under Christ’s rule (2 Pet. 3:13; Rev. 20:1-6). 

     In summary, the biblical worldview considers the major issues of life and provides the most comprehensive answer for what is.  We should not think of the biblical worldview as merely an academic exercise to answer our burning questions.  No.  There is real life application for the biblical worldview, which should produce in us a love and appreciation for God, love for others, and submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. 

Steven R. Cook, D.Min.

Related Articles:

[1] Stan and Jan Berenstain, The Bears’ Nature Guide (New York, NY, Random House, 1975), 6.

[2] God is all-knowing (Ps. 139:1-6; Matt. 6:31-33), all-present (Ps. 139:7-12; Heb. 13:5), all-powerful (Job 42:2; Isa. 40:28-29), sovereign (1 Chron. 29:11; Dan. 4:35; Acts 17:24-25), righteous (Ps. 11:7; 119:137), just (Ps. 9:7-8; 19:9; 50:6; 58:11),holy (Ps. 99:9), immutable (Ps. 102:26, 27; Mal. 3:6), truthful (2 Sam. 7:28; John 17:17; 1 John 5:20), loving (Jer. 31:3; 1 John 4:7-12, 16), faithful (Deut. 7:9; Lam. 3:23; 1 John 1:9), merciful(Ps. 86:15; Luke 6:36; Tit. 3:5), gracious (Ps. 111:4; 116:5; 1 Pet. 5:10), and eternal (Deut. 33:27; 1 Tim. 1:17).

[3] John A. Kitchen, Proverbs: A Mentor Commentary (Scotland, Great Britain, Christian Focus Publications, 2006), 267.

[4] John Updike, Pigeon Feathers (New York, NY, Random House Publishers, 1975), 17.

About Steven R. Cook, D.Min.

Steven is a Christian educator. His webpages communicate evangelical Christian doctrines and topics. Steven earned a Master of Divinity degree in 2006 from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and completed his Doctor of Ministry degree in 2017 from Tyndale Theological Seminary. His articles are theological, devotional, and promote a biblical worldview. Studies in the original languages of Scripture, ancient history, and systematic theology have been the foundation for Steven’s teaching and writing ministry. He has written several Christian books, dozens of articles on Christian theology, and recorded more than three hundred hours of audio and video sermons. Steven worked in jail ministry for over twelve years, taught in Bible churches, and currently leads a Bible study each week at his home in Arlington, Texas.
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7 Responses to A Biblical Worldview

  1. John J Flanagan says:

    God bless you for speaking the truth in an age of lies.

  2. Quentin says:

    This is very well written. I always appreciate when the straightforward understanding of life from the atheist perspective is presented, as it is so depressing it’s hard to digest.

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