Filtering Ideas Biblically

Christian’s should have a worldview that is shaped by the Bible; a Biblical worldview.  We know that the only source of reliable truth is God’s Word, and it should inform, color, filter and shape the way in which we think, assess and respond.  We obtain a Christian or Biblical worldview by being in the Word daily.  The only way to build your basis of foundational truth is to be consistent in reading the Bible and prayer.  It is the ministry of the Holy Spirit to teach us through the Word.  Ask Him; He will help you.

I thought it might be helpful to give my readers an actual example of how I assess information or ideas with a Biblical worldview.  A few days ago, a friend who knows that I am a Christian sent me a meme and asked for my thoughts on it.  I have asked this friend for permission to share the request, meme and my response here on the blog.  My friend graciously gave that permission.  Here is the meme:

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Here is my analysis/response:

I think the best way for me to respond is to address each of the claims that this parable teaches with what the Bible says about them.

Claim #1: God created everything to be appreciated and to teach people lessons.

God has many attributes like holiness, truth, justice, love, immutability, etc. One of His attributes is ‘creator’ and it pleases Him to express His attributes, so He created the world for His own pleasure. Colossians 1:16 says “For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.”

Claim #2: God created atheists

Yes, God created humankind. (Genesis 1:27) But the implication that God created people in unbelief is false. Unbelief is a sin.  “Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.”(Hebrews 3:12) And God cannot sin, “in the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago”(Titus 1:2; see also Heb. 6:18; James 1:13) nor does sin originate from Him ” This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.”(1 John 1:5)

Claim #3: atheists perform good deeds because of an inner sense of morality.

Correct. God is a moral being, and humankind is created in His image (Genesis 1:27) which means that we are moral beings too. Part of common grace, meaning blessings that God gives to every person ever born whether or not they are believers, is that He has written His law (morality) on every heart; a.k.a. an inner conscience. Romans 2:15 “They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them.”

Sadly, however, when someone remains in unbelief, their acting on their conscience only works to further condemn them because it shows that they do know right from wrong, and yet refused to believe in God. Romans chapter 1 explains the consequences of rejecting common grace (creation and conscience), I recommend reading the entire thing, but I will put verses 18-25 here:

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.

Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.”

Claim #4: When someone asks for help, help them.

Yep. Matthew 5:42 “Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you” Proverbs 19:17 “Whoever is kind, lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.” Luke 12:33-34 “Sell your possessions and give to charity; make yourselves money belts which do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near nor moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

More importantly James 4:17 “So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.”

Claim #5: become an atheist

False. Back to the answer in #2. God would never say to become an atheist as unbelief is a sin. But yes, people, especially believers should help those who need it because God commands us too.

I think the overall sentiment of the parable is that people who profess to be Christians often do not act like it, and yet many unbelievers are more moral, charitable, etc so: shame on Christians. Yes, this is true, sadly. It really is grievous. It is a blight on the name of Jesus. I would add, however, that many people who profess to be believers are not truly born again, and only identify with Christianity for whatever reason; they are only religious. That explains some of it.  But obeying the moral compass of one’s conscience does not excuse the greater sin of unbelief. As I stated before, it simply heaps further condemnation on the unbeliever.

I hope you have found this example a helpful exercise!  God’s Word is sufficient for all of our needs.  2 Timothy 3:16 tells us “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness.”  Stay in His word, and you will be prepared to distinguish truth from the lies of the world.

Soli Deo Gloria!

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