Glasses, not Blinders

Many Christians mistakenly think that, as followers of Christ, our world view works this way:

“I will believe the Bible is true because I’m a Christian.”
“I will not believe that the universe randomly evolved into its present state because I’m a Christian.”
“I go to church because I’m a Christian.”
“I do not _______________ because I’m a Christian.”

But Gordon Clark, 20th century American theologian and philosopher, said that “World view is more than a mental sentry, it is the essential interpreter of life’s meaning.”

This is quite striking because, as a Christian, I have thought that my value system is determined by the ideas, thoughts, and actions I reject. I viewed my Christianity as my mind’s bouncer. Gordon Clark believed that my Christian world view is not blinders, keeping me from absorbing objectionable opinions or processes, but glasses through which I view the whole of reality. These lenses help determine whether a particular thought is right or wrong, acceptable or unacceptable, healthy or unhealthy. I am not simply rejecting ideas or behaviors, I am looking at them the way God wants me to.

I believe Psalm 100:3 sums up the Christian world view nicely:

Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

  • It tells me who God is: Yahweh (“I Am”; the uncreated, self-existent One) is Elohim (divine ruler; the one, true God).
  • It tells me what He did: He created me.
  • It tells me man’s position: I can neither create nor sustain myself. Without God I do not exist.
  • It tells me how God relates to me: I am one of His people and He cares for me as a shepherd cares for His sheep.

If I interpret the world in light of those truths there is only one way for me to live—in a state of constant thanksgiving, praise, and service to the God who made me and provides for me…and that’s pretty much what the rest of the Psalm says.

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.
Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
-Psalm 100 (KJV)

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About Jeff Postlewaite

high school principal since '07, father since '04, teacher since '03, husband since '03, sound tech since '96, UVA fan since '92, gadget junkie since '89, Christian since '88, Giants fan since '84, golfer since '83, brother since '83, human since '81

Posted on September 17, 2012, in Biblical Thought and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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