Monday, December 23, 2013

What is a "World View"

Many have heard Calvinist and Reformed writer ask talk about world view and world and life view, or even the German Weltanschauung . I can give a  good illustration first by demonstrating its opposite. When I was a teenager in High School I had an "old maid" Biology teacher. She was a very irascible woman who had been teaching for about 100 years when I had her for Science class. (If you attended Dothan High School between the 40's and early 80's you know exactly who I am talking about.) In my case she was also my next door neighbor.

She always wore one of two hats. On the one hand she was a devout member of her local Church, a regular attender who was famed for singing in the choir. There she wore her Church hat. When she entered the classroom she put on her teacher hat and was a devout believer in evolution almost to the point of being a Eugenicist. At home she wore her crabby old neighbor woman hat. A mean old lady who hated animals, complaining about our dog even though it once ran off some punks egging her car and our cat, even though it went after the squirrels who ate her pecans. In my college I once gave her a copy of "The Genesis Flood", by Whitcomb and Morris, I don't know if she actually read it.

Later in life a couple of years ago I had a supervisor who was also like this. A professing Christian, who proudly proclaimed himself an "Independent Fundamentalist," He was a tyrant who mocked and humiliated those under him causing one man to physically attack him and another to curse him out and walk away from a job he had been at for Seventeen years. (while working for him I was constantly forced to defend Christianity to people who cited him as an example of a Christian.)

In both  these case these people had religious beliefs that were for Sunday only. The Christianity they presumably learned in Church never informed their lives as Teachers or Supervisors. In short their faith was only an aspect of their lives that didn't touch on the other aspects.

In the truly Christian World view the Christian Faith is the central truth of life which informs every other aspect of our lives. There is no area of existence to which it has no claim or is neutral. All aspects of life whether political, cultural, aesthetic, or economic are seen from our Central Biblical Presuppositions.

Today as the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer once argued most people get their presuppositions the same way they get the measles. They absorb them from their peers, the popular culture and the University. While they may have a few Evangelical ideas sprinkled in, they do not inform the persons life. In the case of my former supervisor for example he had religious truth, That was for "up there" somewhere. He has another set of proposition he operated from in the work place, "the real world." which he occasionally sprinkled with "God Words". Ultimately such a bilious mixture will never work.

This is not to say that anyone is perfectly consistent in their world view. We are all sinful men and subject to the shortcomings of our sinful nature preserved from falling only by Gods Regenerating power an grace.
But the world view Calvinist possesses an Ultimate authority which he can use to evaluate the dominate culture in all it's aspects. This is why the dominant culture hates us. As George Orwell (In a remarkable common grace insight,) once noted "the further a society drifts from the truth the more it will hate those who speak it" (attributed to George Orwell).

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