Thoughts on How A “Biblical Worldview” Affects Matter of Opinion
My Wednesday night teacher right now talked last week about a phrase that I used to not fully get, but that makes more and more sense as we see our culture degenerate. The phrase: A Biblical Worldview.
A recent nationwide survey completed by Barna Research Group concluded that only 4% of Americans had a “biblical” worldview. That should disturb members of the church, if for no other reason it shows we have a lot cut out for us, we have a tremendous opportunity to impact others adn that we appear to not have done a very good job with our responsibility to be light and salt (though that last one may be a little unfair as it would indite people like Job, Noah, Abraham, and even Christ). What might should disturb us more is that when Barna, who has researched cultural trends since 1984, looked at those who profess to be Christians in America and stated that only 9% held a Biblical Worldview.
This is significant because everyone has a worldview and that affects everything we do and say. It deals with our morals and how we view morals. Our worldview affects how we treat others, our families, our churches, every aspect of our lives.
Barna says, “Although most people own a Bible and know some of its content, our research found that most Americans have little idea how to integrate core biblical principles to form a unified and meaningful response to the challenges and opportunities of life.” So they would say and even think they possess a biblical worldview but not knowing what the Bible says, studying it or trying to follow it – they are really clueless as to how to have one!
- What’s a worldview? It is the framework from which we make sense of life and the world around us. Your personal worldview is a combination of all you believe to be true, and what you believe becomes the driving force behind every emotion, decision and action. It affects your response to every area of life.
- What’s a biblical worldview? But and many miss this. A biblical worldview is not just a Christian Worldview or a Theological (view on God) Worldview – it is deeper than that – but a Bible one we are talking about. There is a difference – one with a Christian worldview might get his direction from what he thinks Christ would say or do (WWJD) in a given situation or what he has seen others who claim Christ do…but a BIBLICAL WORLDIVEW demands that we go to the Bible for such direction! 2 Timothy 3:16. A biblical worldview is based on the infallible Word of God. When you believe the Bible is entirely true, then you allow it to be the foundation of everything you say and do. A theological worldview might take it that God’s ultimate purpose is that we be happy, or that we love and that may make us make some decisions that are totally against His revealed Will.
BUT that is not where my thoughts ran as I listened in class. It went to the concept that intrigued me. If a biblical worldview looks at what God has specifically said on a matter – a “thus saith the Lord” – DOES then a biblical worldview affect us on matters of opinion. I think this is where most church conflict develops. The temptation is to think that a biblical world view affects only that which the Bible legislates on. And that in any other area I have freedom. I can act like a jerk, belittle others, insult their opinions, ignore them, avoid them, talk bad about them, treat them with suspicion, etc.
In what way or does a biblical world view at all affect how I treat matters of opinion?
- Even in areas where the Bible has not legislated: I am still bound to treat others with love. So some issue comes up that I have a strong opinion on but can’t give book, chapter and verse as to why it is or it is not sinful. There will be on most any issue of that type some people who will see it differently than I do. But a biblical worldview demands that I treat them with the love of Christ (1 Peter 1:22).
- A biblical worldview demands that in matters of opinion I am to not do anything that would cause another to stumble (1 Corinthians 8:13).
- A biblical worldview demands that I strive for peace with all (Romans 12:18).
- A biblical worldview in the church demands that cannot cause division or sow discord (Romans 14:20).
- A biblical worldview demands that even if I do not like the decision of the elders of the church that I remain under their authority (Hebrews 13:7 & 17).
So it does matter…