Kennedy's 'Postcards from
A Christian worldview
Jonal entry 994 | Monday, June 19 2006
More of the articles among the 994 Jonals here since January 2001 have been directlyor, more often, indirectlyabout developing a "Christian worldview" than anything else. As I said in November 2004, the development and teaching of a Christian worldview was the focus of my 15-year campus ministry, which I consider my "real" career, from which I've been retired now since 1983. Retired officially, but not unofficially. Unofficially, I've continued developing my own Christian frame of reference, honing it, writing about it, sharing it with anyone who will listen to or read my thoughts about it. This was the focus of my Theophilus and Friends features in the San Jose community newspaper group I edited from 1989 to 1996, and it has been the focus in most of the features here in the Jonals. It is the overarching purpose and point of my Christian News and Media Portal ministry, Xnmp, in which I try to enable readers to read the daily news and commentary about it from a Christian perspective.
A Christian worldview is important, to Christians, because the New Testament is rife with passages saying that His disciples are to be molded into His mind, and with commandments that we follow Him in every every aspect of life, not just "religion" or worship, but to bring "everything into captivity to Christ." To be a Christian is in a real sense to have the "mind of Christ," as the Apostle Paul says, "'For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?' But we have the mind of Christ," 1 Corinthians 2:16. And he reiterates the same idea in Philippians 4:7, "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." And in 2 Corinthians 10:5 Paul says our task as disciples of Jesus is to "cast down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ"
If a Christian worldview has any importance to non-Christians (some of whom I hope are also reading this), it should be to enable them to better understand their Christian (or as some might call them "radical Christian") friends and what it is that "makes them tick," or what causes them to have so many ideas contrary to their own.
As I've said in previous articles, the first step in attaining a Christian mind is in absorbing the teaching of the Holy Scriptures. To know what God says through His prophets, His Son, and His apostles and disciples is the first step to understanding His purpose in creating us, creating the world, and calling us into His service, His kingdom, his church. And after the Scriptures, which are the cornerstone of all of the church's teaching, we also need to know the teaching of the church and why the church interprets the Scriptures the way it does, and why it emphasizes certain doctrines, and even certain sins, over others, and why this is important to all believers.
In the sense in which I'm using "the church" here, I have also said repeatedly that in the main there are only three major divisions in what that means, the Catholic (cited first because it is throughout the world by far the largest in membership), the confessing Protestant (second largest worldwide), and the Eastern Orthodox, which was second in size until our own generation, in which Protestant missions have seen explosive growth in followings in what sociologists call the Thrid World or the undeveloped countries. And among these three "communions" that are generally Christian, there are only a handful of dogmas (doctrines that must believed to be a "Christian" in the terms of one of the three groups) that fundamentally differ from one to another. The most important of these doctrines, as far as keeping the major communions apart, is the Catholic dogma of Papal Infallibility and Superiority, which is important, but not a matter of life and death or, in my opinion, of determining whether anyone goes to heaven or hell.
We'll continue this next time.