By Contributing Writer, Stephani
Within the realm of Christian education, emphasis has been placed on the importance of developing a “biblical worldview.” This is absolutely wonderful, yet it can also be absolutely overwhelming! A multitude of topics seem to loom ahead – the Middle Ages, Aristotle, the arts, mathematics, great pieces of literature… How can we confidently move forward in developing our minds without becoming overwhelmed?
A Waterfall of Truth…
Face to face with the living and active Word of God leaves me feeling like a little girl, cup in hand, before a powerful, overflowing waterfall. It is breath-taking. It is sufficient. It is wide and high and long and deep. There are endless cupfuls of truth pouring from God’s Word. I want to drink it all!
Cup in hand, we are to come to Jesus and allow His Word to transform the way we think about all of life – including education.
If we are not careful however, the prospect of drinking from this abundance can be overwhelming. Instead of rejoicing in the endless cupfuls of truth before us, we may feel drowned by how much there is to drink. When developing a biblical worldview seems overwhelming, we must REMEMBER…
1) We are no longer dead! We have been given new eyes to see the Truth!
Apart from Christ, our eyes cannot see the truth, and therefore we have no hope of developing a biblical worldview. However, in Christ we are no longer dead! We are new creations in Jesus, and the One who has all the answers to our questions has opened our dead eyes to see the Light.
In his book Lit! author Tony Reinke describes the transforming work of God in believers’ lives as it applies to our ability to read books:
The sinner’s greatest need is to see the light of Christ’s glory. But this requires more than a Bible in hand; it requires an act of God’s powerful Spirit in the heart. This act of illumination is so powerful and so obviously the handiwork of God that the fitting metaphor is God’s ignition of the sun in our solar system: “For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Cor. 4:6). This is an act of God’s sovereign grace. And when he acts, Christians are lit… The day you are lit, the day God removes the veil from your heart and reveals the glory of his Son to you, is an experience that will radically change your life. And beholding the glory of Christ will transform how you read books-every book.
[Reinke, Tony, Lit! A Christian Guide to Reading Books (Wheaton, Illinois: Crossway, 2011), 32, 33.]
Rejoice, Christian! Your eyes have been unveiled! The Father has mercifully cleansed our glazed eyes and has put an everlasting spark into them, causing us to see and love, “the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ”!
“He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:32
Our Father has not spared His own Son for us. Should we now fear that He is not able to continue to transform our minds according to His truth?
2) We have a tool which makes the simple WISE!
Truth is not relative. We are not God and should not presume to know truth based on our experiences, logic, or reasoning. Instead God has given to us His Word which 2 Timothy 3:16-17 says is “breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
Again Tony Reinke writes,
It is only on the basis of God’s cohesive Word that we can ever hope to make sense of the details of information in this world. And it is only on the basis of Scripture that we can ever hope to untangle truth from lies, good from evil, and beauty from distortion. (Ibid., 58)
As we study to develop a biblical worldview, we are to rejoice because God has given us His Word. It is sharp, perfect, and able to direct us into truth as we sort through worldview issues!
Fear not, the Holy Spirit dwells in us and uses God’s Word to guide us into the truth.
3) It is not WHAT we know, it is WHO we know
Developing a biblical worldview can feel overwhelming if we are quick to compare ourselves with other believers. It is our tendency to fall into one of two camps:
1 – Prideful Comparison
Have you ever put together a 1000+ piece puzzle? It is exciting to watch the picture come to life as each little piece locks into the one next to it. Developing a biblical worldview is like putting a puzzle together. Every piece that is added increases our delight in the overall picture.
As the Lord directs us into His truth piece by piece, we should be careful not to become haughty in our attitude toward other believers who have fewer pieces in the correct places. Pride takes our eyes off the beauty of God’s wisdom revealed in the worldview puzzle and onto ourselves.
2 – Discontented Comparison
I am sure we can all think of people in our lives who have a more comprehensive biblical worldview than we do. They have delved into the Word and know how to productively wade through classic literature, historical eras, science textbooks, and newspaper articles in light of God’s Word.
We can tell they have filled their cup over and over again in the waterfall of wisdom in Christ and can now discern underlying worldviews. Comparing ourselves with others can lead to bitterness, discontentment, and discouragement. When this happens our eyes can again easily shift from Jesus onto ourselves.
There is a passage in Jeremiah that addresses both of these tendencies:
Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.” Jeremiah 9:23, 24 ESV (emphasis added)
Our desire to know, understand, and love our awesome God should be at the root of developing a biblical worldview.
It is not what we know, how much we know, or how eloquently we can state it. What matters is that we know HIM, understand HIM, and love HIM.
R.L. Dabney stated this beautifully,
Every line of true knowledge must find its completeness as it converges on God, just as every beam of daylight leads the eye to the sun.
[R.L. Dabney, On Secular Education, ed. Douglas Wilson (Moscow, Idaho: Canon Press, 1996), 16, 17.]
All the Puzzle Pieces Fit Together in Christ
We serve a God who is never overwhelmed. He is more than able to make all grace abound to us!
“…God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8 ESV
We do not need to fear the innumerable puzzle pieces before us. Every single puzzle piece unfolds our understanding and fits beautifully into God’s purposes in Christ! The waterfall is endless and so is our joy in drinking from it!