Foundation for a Biblical Worldview
1. We are a product of Divine design
Psalm 139:13, 14
2. We are in a position above the animals
3. We have a powerful adversary
II Corinthians 4:4
4. We have a problem with sin
5. We have a plan for rescue
A. A great champion
B. A gift of grace
C. A guarded line of truth
Genesis 4:25, 26
Most all the major doctrines of the Christian faith are rooted in the soil of the first 5 chapters of Genesis then branch and fruit out as the Scriptures unfold.
[Some basics for the saints who wish to build their argument]
The esoteric (revealed only to a particular group – John 10:26) enigma (the unexplainable) of Jesus
1. The embryonic Old Testament witness
How the idea of the deity of the Christ begins to form in the Old Testament
A. From a case for complexity in our singular God
If God is one, then how can Jesus be God?
Deuteronomy 6:4 “One” is from the Hebrew echad. It is apparently a complex unity, or a one that can be plural. Compare ‘one’ in Genesis 2:24 and perhaps Numbers 13:23 in illustration.
Matthew 28:19 – “…the name (singular) of the father, son and holy spirit”
B. From comparison of Old and New Testament references
I. e. Isaiah 45:22-24 with Philippians 2:11; Psalm 102:25-27 with Hebrews 1:10-12
2. His embodiment of the Word
John 1:1, 14
3. His express words
Compare John 8:58 w/ Exodus 3:14
4. The empirical witness of His works
5. His entertainment of worship
Compare John 20:19-31 w/ Revelation 22:8, 9
6. The extended references in the apostles’ writing
God’s effulgence - Hebrews 1:2
His encompassment of everything beginning and end - Revelation 1:17
We have already seen that the Apostle Paul was open as he equated Jesus with the God of Israel in Isaiah’s prophecy of future obeisance to Yahweh/Jehovah. If Jesus is this same Lord, then He is somehow Yahweh of Israel. But it also stands that if He is Yahweh of Israel, He is Lord of all and therefore Lord of us.
He is Lord.
Will you bow before Him while you yet live? It is a declared certainty we all will bow to Him one day in our future.
Better now than later.
Why your mind may gravitate toward belief
Behind every decision to believe in God is the movement of God’s Spirit upon us. How that happens in real time and events will be found to include several contributors. I want to suggest three tools that are of the rational sort.
What impacts our thinking?
Jesus gave us the ultimate reason any mind gravitates toward belief to finally arrive at a personal and genuine faith in God.
“No person can come to Me unless the father draws them,” and “Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you but My father in Heaven.”
Given the possession of a sound mind, what sort of sound thinking results in movement toward faith?
1. Courageous appraisal of phenomena
Phenomena is what occurs that is observable.
Dr. William Lane Craig poses a question in his arguments appraising the possibility that Christ having been crucified, rose from His grave as savior of humankind. He recommends we courageously and honestly ask,
“What is the most plausible explanation for the phenomena?”
Is there a better explanation for the facts as we know them?
2. Assessment of the most desirable philosophy
Everybody has one. At some point we all subscribe to a love of particular wisdom as a way of working through decisions on right and wrong, likes and dislikes.
The Biblical psalmist once wrote “Taste and see that the Lord is good.” In his estimation, it is possible that someone can come into contact with the Lord (in reference to Yahweh) and come away impressed with His goodness. If it happened to us, would that draw our minds toward rational belief?
Then in another lyric David the sweet psalmist wrote, “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’” One might ask, are we counted as fools for our lack of belief because the evidence all around demands an explanation of outside involvement and we refuse to go there, or is it that we are fools to say there is no God because the absence of God has proven in history to be too horrible?
Something to note
Colossians 2:8 Speaking directly to a body of believers in the city of Colosse of the first century Paul the apostle of Jesus warned the group, “See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.”
The essential philosophy of Jesus is threefold:
1. Faith in God’s Christ for salvation from sin
He is our only solution to moral failure in a just universe
2. Love your neighbor/love your brother for social responsibility
3. The leading of the Spirit of God for personal sanctification (or change for the better)]
There simply is no more beneficial philosophy people find so appealing. The best substitutions all borrow their basic tenets from the Bible.
3. The alternative to God is perilous
Friedrich Nietzsche prognosticated there would not be enough water to wash away the blood of the twentieth century if (so-called) enlightenment put morality on the shoulders of a world of men and women without God. He was not a believer himself but saw the terrible consequence of the removal of the God idea from society’s consciousness, particularly the God of the Judeo/Christian traditions.
He was right.
All our social experiments are in general not only useless toward human improvement but pernicious, and frequently prove fatal.
I much rather Christ and the Christian ideal of God over all.
We are free to draw our own conclusions, but the rationale for giving God a voice in the debate is compelling
Our Bibles are are known to be written by 40 authors gifted by the Holy Spirit over a span of some 1500 years to write the Scriptures for us. Several others whose contributions are researched and incorporated remain unnamed. Blessed Agur, whom Solomon selected as contributor to his collection, is one example.
His words hit home this morning...
"The words of Agur son of Jakeh. The oracle. The man declares, I am weary, O God; I am weary, O God, and worn out.
Surely I am too stupid to be a man. I have not the understanding of a man. I have not learned wisdom, nor have I knowledge of the Holy One.
Who has ascended to heaven and come down? Who has gathered the wind in his fists? Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is his son's name? Surely you know!
Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar.
Two things I ask of you; deny them not to me before I die: Remove far from me falsehood and lying; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is needful for me, lest I be full and deny you and say, “Who is the LORD?” or lest I be poor and steal and profane the name of my God."
Proverbs 30:1-9 [ESV]
Grace today y'all
“Many seek the face of a ruler, but it is from the LORD that a man gets justice.”
Three indications stood out to me in Solomon’s observation…
Having been such a ruler he realized:
1. Ultimate justice cannot be found from a human ruler or judge
We seek the face of human rulers for justice. Solomon was a good one, probably the best ever in his early years. But they are, as he was, and like the rest of us, subject to their own passions. Ultimately it is the Lord we need place our to hopes in. The eyes of the Lord are in every place, and He knows the secrets of hearts. We set our expectations beyond earth’s pale in the courtroom of Heaven where there is no lack of justice for the inhabitants of this universe.
2. No transcendent Lord no final justice
Where there is no true and transcendent God retained in our thoughts there is no hope for justice. Full justice cannot be met out in a universe where the pains of consequence for crimes are not felt, and a person can escape by way of a death where no future for the soul exists.
3. The Lord is just and does justice
The God of the Bible is just, and His laws are perfect. His court practices exemplary jurisprudence.
"And the books were opened..." (Revelation 20:11-15) and "everyone will give an account..." (Romans 14:12)
For which reason I gladly rehearse with the psalmist, “My expectation is from the Lord.”