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How to Articulate a Christian Worldview in Four Easy Steps

October 24th, 2011
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What do you think of this from Kevin Deyoung? I think it is pretty good and useful. How would you modify or change it?

One God. We worship one, personal, knowable, holy God. There are not two gods or ten gods or ten million gods, only one. He has always been and will always be. He is not a product of our mind or imagination. He really exists and we can know him because he has spoken to us in his word.

Two kinds of being. We are not gods. God is not found in the trees or the wind or in us. He created the universe and cares for all that he has made, but he is distinct from his creation. The story of the world is not about being released from the illusion of our existence or discovering the god within. The story is about God, the people he made, and how the creatures can learn to delight in, trust in, and obey their Creator.

Three persons. The one God exists eternally in three persons. The Father is God. The Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, is God. The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of the Father and the Son, is also God. And yet these three—equal in glory, rank, and power—are three persons. The doctrine of the Trinity helps explain how there can be true unity and diversity in our world. It also shows that our God is a relational God.

For us. Something happened in history that changed the world. The Son of God came into the world as a man, perfectly obeyed his Father, fulfilled Israel’s purpose, succeeded where Adam failed, and began the process of reversing the curse. Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world. He rose again from the dead on the third day. By faith in him our sins can be forgiven and we can be assured of living forever with God and one day being raised from the dead like Christ.

Obviously, this doesn’t say everything that needs to be said about the Bible or Christianity. But I find it to be a helpful way to get a handle on some of the most important distinctives of a Christian worldview. Feel free to steal it and use it for yourself. It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3, 4.

 

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  1. David Meggers
    October 24th, 2011 at 07:17 | #1

    I like it! And would only add another part of the equation. Added to articulation would be living lives that invite the conversation; to oversimplify: They’ll know we are Christians by our love. “Behold how they love one another.” Thanks for the post.

  2. Michael Mapus
    October 24th, 2011 at 08:14 | #2

    I like it! I would just add “Bodily”, where he mentions the resurrection.

  3. October 24th, 2011 at 08:16 | #3

    I think the first three are very good. The only change I would make there is to put Christ in the first point–perhaps adding that we can know Him because He spoke to us in His word and He became one of us and lived among us 2000 years ago in Palestine

    But I think the fourth one leaves “something” to be desired. Specifically, the incredibly vague “something happened that changed the world” which makes a jarring contrast with the rest of the fairly precise points. It explains nothing at all, and is then followed by details that I don’t think anyone could make sense of if they didn’t already know the Old Testament narrative. Adam? The Curse? Israel’s purpose? I think it would just be confusing to someone who doesn’t already know the Christian worldview. How about this instead:

    For Us. Adam, the first of us, chose that humanity would rebel against God–a choice whose reach is evidenced by our own choices to daily reject God and harm others. By this, we subjected the world to our deserved suffering and death. But God did not abandon us. He set apart Israel as a people of His own. Though they too rebelled, He nevertheless brought forth His Son, Jesus Christ, through them. Where we all sinned, Christ lived perfectly. Through His undeserved suffering and death, He took God’s punishment in our stead. He then rose again from the grave, ensuring that we too, through faith in Christ, will rise and live eternally with Him.

  4. Roxanne Wodtli
    October 24th, 2011 at 08:23 | #4

    I also like the simplicity which Kevin Deyoung uses when he speaks to other people concerning Christianity. I
    All Christians need to remember that people are also watching our example and every step…remember…they’ll want what we have !!

  5. October 24th, 2011 at 08:42 | #5

    Ok; I see now what he was doing with the last point. The “something” was the incarnation. I was confused since the incarnation is a response to “something” that wasn’t really mentioned in the statement.

  6. Rev. Dustin Beck
    October 24th, 2011 at 08:48 | #6

    I think it’s probably good that he stopped at 4…the only thing I can think of for 5 is the Pentateuch.

  7. SorenK
    October 24th, 2011 at 10:34 | #7

    Kevin Deyoung is speaking very much as a theologian of glory rather than as a theologian of the cross. He’s simplified down to just the sovereignty of God, just like any good reform theologian would do; and the very reason CFW Walther left Saxony. Nothing about how God comes to us in the means of grace.

  8. Cheesehed
    October 24th, 2011 at 11:24 | #8

    I like it.

  9. Pr. Mark Schroeder
    October 24th, 2011 at 14:08 | #9

    @SorenK
    hmmm. Then the order should be: first, “For Us” then “three Persons” (Jesus alone reveals the Father), then, “two kinds of being” and next, “one God.” Then add to “one God”: He comes to us in the Gottesdienst in His means of grace.

  10. October 24th, 2011 at 14:35 | #10

    I like the following expression of our Christian Worldview much better and it is truly catholic…

    I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.

    And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

    I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy catholic* Church, the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen.

    * catholic means “universal” and is not a reference to the Roman Catholic Church.

    —The Apostles Creed

  11. Michael Mapus
    October 24th, 2011 at 17:34 | #11

    @Jim Pierce

    Good point. Although I like Mr. DeYoungs simplified statement, The Apostles Creed is still the king of the hill.

  12. MarlaZ
    October 27th, 2011 at 05:22 | #12

    I prefer the Nicene creed as a statement of Faith. But Deyoung’s 4-part can be a quick synopsis to invite questions from a non-believer, and lead to more discussion on our Lord and Salvation. Discussion is always a good start.

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