A great topic of discussion in sectarian circles these days is the need for instilling a “Christian World View” in the minds of believers. As I understand this term, it refers to the attitude that we have when addressing all the areas of life around us. A true “Christian World View” would insist that we base all of our decisions and opinions of things on what the Bible says. This is easier dreamed of than done. Many people today will tell you that they believe Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and they believe the Bible is His word, but those truths should be restricted to the Church House. To try to carry that into the realm of science, morality, entertainment, culture, etc… would be going too far. This is an interesting thing to consider.
The Example of the New Testament Church
What makes a church a Church of Christ (Romans 16:16) is not that some conclave of men recognizes them as such and their name is stamped with a seal of approval and put on record in a basement somewhere. It is not being able to “rattle the chain of church secession,” nor is it determined on following one or two core creedal beliefs, but rather what makes a church a Church of Christ is submission to the instruction of the Bible alone (2 Tim. 3:16-17), and the example the early Church provides for us. When we do things as they did them, in the manner in which they did them, we will be one of them. So we ask, what of the Church under Apostolic guidance? What was it’s world view? Did Paul and Peter teach that Christianity should be confined to the worship service, but left out of daily affairs? Let us consider our only source:
A Christian View of Science
As Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus, surrounded by the greatest intellectual minds of his day, he did not hesitate to present a “Christian World View”. To these poly-theists, pantheists and atheists he declared, “God, who made the world and everything in it… is Lord of heaven and earth. He gives to all life, breath, and all things. And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings.” (Acts 17:24-26) He further affirmed that man could be, and often was wrong in his scientific theory. “O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called…” (1 Tim. 6:20) Some might say, “well I want to know what Jesus Christ thought about science and religion, surely he did not seek to mix the two?” Quite the contrary, there was never a more outspoken defender of the miracles and wonders of God than Jesus Christ. Surely the scientific world of today would balk at the claims of a man to be the Son of God, to have the power to heal the sick and raise the dead, to have control over the very forces of nature. The Lord convinced many of the great minds of His day, for example Luke, the gospel writer and author of the book of Acts was a physician, and held a “Christian View” of science.
A Christian View of Morality
It is interesting to see people trying to keep the Bible out of discussions on morality. Interesting I say, because there would be no concept of morality in human civilization and we would be but a raging chaotic race of cave men if not for the master work of God. Moral concepts that are realized without the scriptures are said to be “written in our hearts” by the hand of the Creator. “For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, who show the work of the law written in their hearts.” (Romans 2:14-15). So we see that indeed even our most basic understanding of right and wrong comes from God, but we ask, “How do we now what is truly ‘good’?” Jesus gave us the answer, “No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.” (Matthew 19:17). There is no good to be found in this world, but by the word of God. Furthermore, we note that in the scripture we have “the truth,” the absolute standard that settles all matters of faith and practice. “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32) The only fitting view of moral issues is a Christian view.
A Christian View of the Government
One area where we find a great deal of activity today is the attempted merger of Church and State, but as we look into the scripture, we will see that this goes against the “Christian View” of earthly politics. The church is not told to take an active role in the affairs of the state, aside from being submissive, inasmuch as God is primarily served, and being good citizens, but of the Church it is said that we should behave as “guests” in the kingdoms of this world. We are in the world, but not of the world (1 Jn. 4:4-6). We are strangers and pilgrims (1 Pet. 2:11). We are not to involve ourselves with the affairs of the world (Rom.13:12), nor are we to love the world (1 Jn. 2:15). When I see Christians who are more concerned for the state of the State than the condition of the Church I am greatly troubled. When I see God’s people busier seeing to the President’s business than the King’s business, enthused and invigorated to go out and campaign for a ne’er-do- well senator, but unwilling to lift a finger to proclaim the sinless Christ, that is disturbing indeed. We thank God for the civil authorities, they are a gift from Him. They are sinners that the Lord uses to do the things Christians could never do (enact vengeance, take up arms, etc…) unto our protection from other sinners. We are to obey the Laws of the land, whether we think them unjust or not, so long as we give to God first (Matt. 22:20-21), pay our taxes, not speak evil of those in power (Titus 3:1-2) and pray for them.
Indeed we can all agree that a “Christian World View” is essential to being a New Testament Christian and being a Member of the New Testament Church. CED