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Wednesday
Dec012010

Theological Term of the Week

worldview
A network of presuppostions … in terms of which all experience is related and interpreted;1 a set of presuppositions (or assumptions) which we hold (consciously or subconsciously) about the basic makeup of our world,”2 and through which we make sense of reality.

  • From scripture:
    We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, (2 Corinthians 10:5 ESV)
  • From Developing a Biblical Worldview by Mark D. Roberts:

    If you are seeking a biblical worldview, begin at the beginning in Genesis, in the first words of the Bible. From Genesis 1-3 we learn the following, all crucial components of a biblical worldview:

    1. There is one transcendent, sovereign, all-powerful God who created all things.

    2. Matter matters, because God created heaven and earth and saw that all things he created are very good.

    3. The image of God as male and female shows us that God is personal (not a thing or an it) and yet transcendent (not exclusively male or exclusively female).

    4. The image of God as male and female shows us that we human beings are: uniquely valuable; essentially male or female; meant to share life together in a complementary relationship as men and women; created for life in community.

    5. What’s really wrong with us is sin, our rejection of God’s rightful rule over our lives, seen in actions that disobey God.

    6. Sin explains what’s wrong in the world. Sin leads to brokenness between humans, between humans and God, and in creation itself.

    7. A biblical worldview does not minimize or deny the reality of pain and evil, but even the bad news of Genesis 3 offers glimmers of hope. God has not abandoned his creation or his people, but seeks us out. Jesus will ultimately crush the head of serpent, eradicating both sin and its consequences.

    Of course everything I’ve just said assumes the truthfulness of the Bible. A biblical worldview, reasonably enough, rests upon the Bible, and is adopted by people who accept the Bible’s authority and spend time learning its truth. Perhaps one of the most distinctive aspects of a biblical worldview in today’s world is the whole idea of absolute truth.

Learn more:

  1. Kenneth Samples: What in the World is a Worldview?
  2. Ligon Duncan: What in the World is a Worldview?
  3. Mark D. Roberts: Developing a Biblical Worldview
  4. Matt Slick: What Are Some Elements of a Christian Worldview?
  5. Michael Horton: How Your Theology Shapes Your Worldview
  6. New Links! Al Mohler: The Christian Worldview As Master Narrative: Creation; Sin and its Consequences; Redemption Accomplished; The End That Is a Beginning.
  7. Greg Bahnsen: Introduction to Worldviews (series of 7 YouTube videos): Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7.

Related terms:

1 From Introduction to Worldviews, Part 1 by Greg Bahnsen.
2 From The Universe Next Door by James Sire.

Do you have a a theological term you’d like to see featured here as a Theological Term of the Week? If you email it to me, I’ll seriously consider using it, giving you credit for the suggestion and linking back to your blog when I do.

Clicking on the Theological Term graphic at the top of this post will take you to a list of all the previous theological terms in alphabetical order.

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