What in the world is a Worldview?
You have probably heard the term worldview. So, what exactly does it mean? Why is it important anyway?
Well, simply put a worldview is how a person looks at the world.
It is basically your philosophy of life or your perspective from which you understand reality. A worldview answers the most important questions in life: How did I get here? What is my purpose? Are there any rules or moral guidelines to follow in this life? What happens when I die?
Whether you realize it or not, everyone has a worldview. It doesn’t matter if you are religious or not. Many factors form our worldview. It is shaped by our parents, the culture we were raised in, our friends, education, books, and media among other factors. A worldview greatly influences what you believe is right or wrong.
Let me illustrate. A good pair of glasses helps you see things more clearly and accurately. Obviously, a bad pair of glasses will distort your vision and hinder you from seeing things as they really are. Many times, after you put on a pair of glasses you forget about them. However, you are filtering everything through these lenses. That is why it is so critical to have glasses that will help you see the clear picture of reality. People will have different lenses that will affect their vision.
So just like a pair of glasses, a worldview affects the way you see everything. It is the code that you live by.
This is important because when it comes to the big questions in life such as the existence of God, the purpose of life, or the reliability of Scripture, our perspective or lenses, will affect the way we understand the truth. Logically our actions and what motivates us should be consistent with our worldview. For example, if you adopt the worldview of atheism you do not believe that God exists. There is no good answer for the origin of time, space, and matter. Ultimately, something came from nothing. We are complex uncreated chemical reactions that are subject to randomness over a long period of time. This worldview could easily promote the idea that people really have no purpose.
Some other worldview examples would include paganism or the idea that many gods and spirits exist. Another one would be Pantheism which holds that the world itself is divine. A common one held in our culture today would be naturalism, meaning the physical, material world is all that exists. This is not an exhaustive list.
However, when we compare all of the worldviews it becomes very clear that Christianity is rational and gives us the best picture of reality.
Let’s briefly explore the Christian or Biblical Worldview. What does it mean to have a Biblical worldview? Having a Biblical worldview means you view life through the lens of the Bible. This gives us clear direction and helps us successfully navigate the challenges of our culture with confidence. A Biblical worldview believes in the existence of a living God who has revealed Himself through His creation as well as Scripture. God has revealed Himself expressly through Jesus. The Christian worldview tells us that we have tremendous value. We were created in the image of God, no matter what our gender or ethnic background. Our Creator loves us. He sent His Son to die for us and those who believe in Him can live with God forever.
Yes, the Biblical worldview answers the big questions: Origin, meaning, morality and destiny.
Origin – Where did I come from? The first 10 words in the Bible are so incredibly powerful, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Christianity provides the best answer to the beginning of the Universe. It recognizes a very powerful, personal “uncaused first cause” that exists outside of time, space and matter. This is who Christians recognize as God. We live in this universe that mainstream science agrees had a beginning at is it perfectly fine-tuned to support life. This is consistent with reality.
Meaning – Why are we here? According to the bible, we were created for a purpose. We are a part of God’s plan and were created in His image. We are deeply loved! We can have a personal relationship with God. We are commanded to love Him and also make Him known to others.
Morality - Is there a right and wrong? The Christian worldview recognizes that all truth comes from God. He is the single source of truth. Jesus Christ said “I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through me”. God is the ultimate judge of right and wrong, but He has placed in us the ability to know and respond to truth. Deep inside of us is an awareness that truth exists. It corresponds with our everyday experiences. This awareness was placed by God who gives us a hunger to know truth. Remember this; it is not just your truth or my truth. It is available to everybody. Truth is not invented. It is discovered. It is true whether you or I believe it or not.
Destiny – What happens when we die? This is the most exciting part! We are eternal beings and as Christians we will live forever in an eternal relationship with our Creator. It will also be a place where there are no more tears, no death, and no fear.
So, the Biblical worldview holds up to the scrutiny and best describes our world as it is. Unlike other worldviews, it is rooted in history, so it can be tested. It passes the test!
The most important historical event is the life death and resurrection of Jesus. As the Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15, “if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is vain and your faith is futile.”
The Bible can also be tested using the same criteria historians use to verify the authenticity of other ancient documents. The New Testament passes the test far better than anything else from the ancient world! They are considered trustworthy beyond a reasonable doubt. The Biblical worldview is true. And it provides hope to a chaotic culture.
Unlike most other religions, Christianity acknowledges we cannot do enough “good works” to solve our sin problem. In fact, the best we can do by ourselves is described as “filthy rags”. Jesus paid the sacrifice for our sins.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works lest anyone should boast. When we accept this free gift, His righteousness is put to our credit!
Think about this for a minute. You know how you got here. Now that you are here, you know what your purpose of life is. You have the rules in Scripture along with the moral guidelines to give you direction. And the best of all, you know where you are going when you die!
When you believe that it changes everything. This is what motivates me to live the abundant life. It is the reason I can get up in the morning with excitement.
The Biblical worldview gives hope and meaning and causes you to have a confident faith you want to share with others.
So, what is your worldview and why do you believe it is the one that allows you to clearly see reality?
Article written by James Werner
Generation Equipped Ministries