God, Himself, is the source of the Christian worldview. Nancy Pearcy in her book, Total Truth, explains that “Christian worldview thinking is far more than a mental strategy or a new spin on current events. At the core, it is a deepening of our spiritual character and the character of our lives. It begins with the submission of our minds to the Lord of the universe-a willingness to be taught by Him. The driving force in worldview studies should be a commitment to ‘love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength, and mind.’ (Lk 10:27) . . . God is not just the Savior of our souls; He is also the Lord of creation. One way we acknowledge His Lordship is by interpreting every aspect of creation in light of His truth. God’s Word becomes a set of glasses offering a new perspective on all our thoughts and actions.”
God, by revealing Himself in the Bible, has given us the lens to see and understand the creation we are a part of, what our life is meant to be and what eternity with God truly means.
We wear glasses when we have poor eyesight so that we can see clearly just what we are looking at. Many of the objects that we see do not change, but the ability to see them for what they actually are does change with glasses. We might not see steps clearly and fall. An object may be beautiful, but we would not know. The glasses are the lens through which we see things as they really are. That is what a Christian worldview is, and that lens is God as He has revealed Himself in the Bible.
This makes our understanding of the inspiration, authority and total truthfulness of the Bible paramount. It is the source of all truth and the lens by which we see God, the world, life and eternity truly (2 Tim. 3:15-17). We believe the Bible is completely truthful because God is completely truthful (Heb. 6:17-18). God is the only One who knows all of reality truly and comprehensively, and Jesus Christ is at the very center of that truth.
He is truth (John 14:6; Heb. 1:1-3). Nonetheless, we live in an era in which many of the cultural, societal and educational authorities oppose the existence of absolute truth or even that there is a truth or truths that are true for all people. Knowing that there are things, ideas, understandings or reality that is true is essential to life. Our very being cries out for it. From my years in the courtroom, I remember the familiar words, “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth so help you God.” The Bible reveals a comprehensive truth about how to know God, understand the world we live in and live life fully as He has purposed.
Another way to consider this is a large puzzle with many very small pieces. While some of the beauty of the complete picture can be seen as more pieces are in place, we can only see it completely when all of the pieces are in place. The Bible represents the completed puzzle, the full picture (the one we see on the puzzle box). As we study and grasp the Bible and its grand narrative, it provides us with our worldview. It puts together pieces such as what is God like?, what is my relationship with Him and my deepest need?, how do I understand things that are wrong in the world?, what should I expect of myself and others?, what standards of conduct should I live by?, what should I live for?, how does my daily life relate to what is unseen?, is there an eternity? and many other dimensions of reality.
We all live every day with a worldview. For the Christian, the growth and clarity of that worldview develops most importantly in the study of the Bible and our own spiritual growth (Psalm 119:11; Col. 2:6). Let’s return to the picture of the lens or the glasses. This time let’s picture the lens as clouded or dirty in need of cleaning. The continual growth in our knowledge of the Bible and its truth and our own spiritual growth gradually cleans and clears the lens of how we understand everything, so we can see God and all of reality more clearly.
I cannot overemphasize this. Everyone, including Christians, receives countless pieces of information, ideas, beliefs, values and more every day that can influence our own worldview, even though many of them are contradictory and untrue. We often adopt them and live as if they are true. It can be compared to an attempt to put pieces from another puzzle into the puzzle we are attempting to complete. Our lives are then lived according to a mixture of what is true and untrue. Tragically, even in the church, people have embraced ideas and feelings that are not consistent with the teaching of the Bible, and perhaps most tragically, to create a god of our own human sensibilities and one created in part by other worldviews. For the Christian, there is no such god. That is why the development of a strong, biblical, Christian worldview is essential for the Christian and the church today. The Bible determines our theology and our theology determines our worldview.
The next articles will explain four biblical and theological pillars of the Christian Worldview. They provide us with the overarching completed picture, puzzle or grand story of God. The study and understanding of a Christian Worldview calls us to look at and study the great true story of the entire Bible to answer the most important issues and human longings.
Suggested Readings: Total Truth by Nancy Pearcy; The book series on Developing a Christian Worldview (with individual and group study guides) by the late Charles Colson and Nancy Pearcy; Hidden Worldviews by Steve Wilkens and Mark L. Sanford; Worldviews in Conflict: Choosing Christianity in a World of Ideas by Ronald H. Nash