‘Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.’ (Matthew 24:35)
Christians today don’t know enough about the Bible.
George Barns says,
“How else can you describe matters when most church going adults reject the accuracy of the Bible, reject the existence of Satan, claim that Jesus sinned, see no need to evangelize, believe that good works are one of the keys to persuading God to forgive their sins, and describe their commitment to Christianity as moderate or even less firm.”
The most widely verse quoted by adults and teens alike is:
“God helps those who help themselves.”
But it’s not even in the Bible!
A Barna Group study revealed that fewer than 1/10 believers possess a biblical worldview as the basis for their decision-making and behaviour.
What is a biblical worldview?
Francis Scheffer said:
“As Christians we are not only to know the right worldview that Jesus tells us the truth of what is, but consciously to act upon that worldview so as to influence society in all its parts and facets across the whole spectrum of life, as much as we can to the extent of our individual and collective ability.”
Worldview really matters and everyone has one.
The question remains – do you have a Biblical Worldview?
Different factors go into forming our worldview:
– Culture in which we are raised.
– Our upbringing
– The books we read
– Our education
– The media to which we have exposed ourselves.
Our worldview will have a bearing on virtually everything we say and do:
– Our moral standards
– How we spend money
– How we vote
– How we relate to God, family, church, friends.
Dr. John Macarthur wrote that a Christian worldview is based on two major presuppositions:
“The first will be the eternal existence of the personal transcendent, triune, God Creator. Second, the God of Scripture has revealed His character, purposes, and will in the infallible and inerrant pages of His special revelation, the Bible, which is superior to any other sources of revelation or human reason alone.”
In other words, there is a Living God and He has revealed Himself in Scripture.
As Christians we believe we can find absolute truth from the Word of God – The Bible.
‘Absolute truth is a reality in our world, regardless of what contemporary culture says, regardless of what may or may not be politically correct, and regardless of what we may feel to be right or wrong.’
We do not base our beliefs on our emotions or on what our culture dictates but rather on what the Bible teaches.
This is what it means to have a Christian, or biblical worldview.
C.S. Lewis says,
“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the Sun has risen, not only because I see it, but because I see everything else.”
How important it is to have a Biblical worldview.
– We live in the last days
– Jesus Christ will return
– We need to know our Bibles
– We need to be close to Jesus.
“You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!” (2 Timothy 3:1-5)
What an accurate assessment of the times in which we live.
People have never been more “spiritual” yet more immoral.
A poll taken by Barna Group said,
“Americans are more interested in faith & spirituality than they are in Christianity. Americans want to shape their own faith experience – “Americans typically draw from a broad treasure of moral, spiritual and ethical sources of thought to concoct a uniquely personal brand of faith.”
We live in an age of the iPod, iPad, iPhone – why note the iGod?
And why not the iFaith?
Today we keep the stuff that we like and makes sense to us – and we delete the things that we do not like, can’t understand or find inconvenient.
So we keep a God of love, forgiveness and mercy.
But we reject the God of holiness, righteousness, and judgment.
We just delete those uncomfortable teachings.
Yes it appears neat and convenient, but will the iGod you have created for yourself and made in your own image, be able to save you in the final day?
‘It has been said that God made man in His own image, and man returned the favour.’
That is what is happening today!
Our culture calls this moral relativism. The belief that there are no absolutes in life. We are all random products of an evolutionary process – not created by personal God.
– There is no right or wrong
– There is no good or evil
– There is no plan or purpose for us
– We are only here by chance
– We therefore make our own luck
– We create our own fate
– We weave our own destiny
– All people are basically good
– If we go bad it is simply because.
This is the belief that we are all products of our own environment.
Interesting: the moral relativists are tolerant of just about everyone – except of people who hold to absolute beliefs.
They very quickly get angry.
In our culture there is very little tolerance for people who believe in absolute truth.
Just like communism and all the other ISMS – relativism sound fine in theory.
Can it be put in practice?
Of course not!
Imagine someone removing all the traffic lights, stop signs, what would it be like?
That is precisely what moral relativism is doing in our culture today.
A KEY QUESTION
The answer to the basic questions of life will reveal your worldview.
For instance: is Jesus Christ the only way to God?
If you are a true Christian and hold to a biblical worldview, you must believe that it is Jesus, and Jesus alone, who can save you from your sin.
Jesus said very plainly and very clearly in John 14:6:
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
The all-roads-lead-to-God philosophy is neither Christian nor biblical.
It is moral relativism.
Even the atheist Christopher Hitchens has the right definition that defines a true Christian, he quotes as he answers a modernist:
“I would say that if you don’t believe that Jesus of Nazareth was the Christ and Messiah, and that He rose again from the dead and by His sacrifice our sins are forgiven, you’re really not in any meaningful sense a Christian.”
People today, in the shoes of modernism are coming up with a ‘religion’ and a ‘god’ of their own making to fill the gasping emptiness in their souls.
One of the founding fathers of USA, Patrick Henry, said:
“It cannot be emphasized too strongly and too often that this great Nation was founded not by religionists, but by Christians not on religions, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ. For that reason alone, people of other faiths have been afforded freedom of worship here.”
It is the departure from this truth that has brought USA to where it is today, and other nations follow.
– Abortion on demand on an epidemic scale.
– Marriages dissolving at record rates.
– With the very definition of marriage and family under attack.
– Rampant violence in schools.
– Increase in suicides.
– Disdain for sexual morality.
Should we be surprised?
The Bible says in Hosea 8:7:
“They have planted the wind and will harvest the whirlwind.”
WRITTEN IN STONE
In the 10 Commandments we find absolute truth actually written by the finger of God on tablets of stone.
“This is truth we can believe in and depend on in a fickle, wishy-washy, morally illiterate, relativistic world.”
The Bible speaks about a man who asked Jesus: “Which is the greatest commandments in the law?”
‘Jesus said to him, “you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: you shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hand all the Law and the Prophets.”‘
Jesus wasn’t doing away with the Ten Commandments when He made that statement; He was simply summing them up, showing us how those commandments play our in life.
If I love God with all my heart, soul, and mind, I will not have any other gods before Him, I will not make and worship a graven image of Him, and I will not take his name in vain.
And if I love my neighbor and I love myself, I will not steal from him, covet his possessions, or tell him a lie.
So Jesus is effectively saying,
“Get these two things down, and the commandments will come together for you.”
The Ten Commandments are found in Exodus 20.
The first 4 commandments pertain to our relationship with God.
The last 6 speak to our relationship with others.
Lets take a moment to review them:
COMMANDMENT ONE: WORSHIP THE RIGHT GOD (Exodus 20:3)
The first commandment is for a reason.
It is as though God was saying:
“Get this one down, because if you mess this one, everything else will fall apart.”
Why is this commandment important?
Because you will serve what or whom you worship.
“You shall worship the Lord and Him only you shall serve.” (Matthew 4:10)
If the Lord is number one in your life, then everything else will find its proper balance.
Otherwise all will be in chaos.
Take a careful look at the wording in Exodus:
“I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.”
The Lord was saying,
“I would like to remind you of what I have done for you already!”
God has redeemed us, rescued us.
What a miracle!
Thank you Jesus!
The apostle John says,
“We love Him because He first loved us.”
God reminded His people that giving attention to these false gods was an offense to Him, especially after all He had done for them!
When we think of an idol worshiper, we generally think of someone lying prone before some creepy carved image.
And people still do that in our world today.
But the Biblical concept of an idol is much broader than that.
In 1 John 5:21 the apostle John says to the Christians of his day:
“Little children, keep yourself from idols.”
The NLT says,
“Keep away from anything that may take God’s place in your hearts.”
The J.B. Phillips says,
“Be on your guard my dear children, against every false god!”
What does this mean?
What is an idol?
An idol or a false god is anyone or anything that takes the place of God in our life.
FACT: Everyone, including atheists – has a god. It may not be the true and living God – but it is a god nonetheless that they worship and serve.
Believe it or not, idolatry comes naturally to all of us.
We were wired by God to be worshipers!
But why would we worship an imitation god instead of the true God?
Because in our mind it gives us control.
In his book “Words from the fire” R. Albert Mohler wrote:
“We can pick an idol up we can put an idol down. We can move an idol to this place and then we can remove it to another place. The idol is at our disposal. We can hide it from our sight, or we can put it in the centre of the room. We all devise our won worship because we have devised our own god.”
Worshiping a god of our own making gives us a sense of control.
For instance, listen to this statement:
“I do not believe in a god who would judge someone. My god is just, merciful, loving, and accepting, and would never judge anyone.”
Who or what is that god of yours?
Where did you come up with him or her?
In fact, you just made up a god of your own – and that’s an idol!
Greg Laurie says,
“A biblical worldview is believing in God as He is revealed in Scriptures. It is looking to the Bible, and the Bible alone, as the source and authority for your belief. It is not what you feel, not what you have heard, not what is popular, not what is acceptable, not what is perceived as hip or cool, and not what fits in with contemporary culture.”
The apostle Paul said to the Romans:
“Let God be true, and every human being a liar.” (Romans 3:4)
Another definition of a false god is this: whatever you get worked up and excited about.
People get passionate about a lot of things.
Now, they may not call these things “gods”, but that is really what they are.
What is the focus of your life?
For all practical purposes, that is your god.
Some people just worship themselves.
It was Oscar Wilde who said:
“To love one’s self is the beginning of a lifelong romance.”
Left to ourselves, we will love ourselves more than anything or anyone else.
It is not a sin to love and care for yourself.
But it becomes a sin when we love and care for ourselves more then we love God!
Now, other people worship money and possessions.
Some people worship celebrities.
There is a tendency to make idols out of people.
And then when they do something human, we say, “I can’t believe he/she did that!
And just what is it that you cannot believe – that humans are humans?
Worship the Lord.
Serve Him only.
He will never disappoint us!
He will never let us down – not in a million years!
The truth, of course, is that these gods we create in our minds aren’t really gods at all.
They are just false images that can’t do anything for us.
Will this god – this person or thing you have placed ahead of Jesus Christ – save you in that final day?
Will that god give you the strength you need in your moment of crisis?
Will that god forgive your sins?
The answer is no!
THE PURPOSE OF THE PLAN
No one can keep the Ten Commandments perfectly.
The Bible tells the story of a wealthy young man who came to Jesus and asked:
“Someone came to Jesus with this question: “Teacher,[d] what good deed must I do to have eternal life?” “Why ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. But to answer your question—if you want to receive eternal life, keep the commandments.” “Which ones?” the man asked. And Jesus replied: “You must not murder. You must not commit adultery. You must not steal. You must not testify falsely. Honor your father and mother. Love your neighbor as yourself.”
I’ve obeyed all these commandments,” the young man replied. “What else must I do?” Jesus told him, “If you want to be perfect, go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” But when the young man heard this, he went away sad, for he had many possessions.”
The book of Mark says that Jesus looked at him and loved him.
But the Lord also knew the truth:
No one has kept all the commandments since childhood.
Jesus had quoted the Law to him – to show him his need.
– He needed a Saviour
– He needed Jesus in his life!
The commandments were not given to us to make us righteous – but to show to us our unrighteousness.
“We know that whatever the law says, it says to those that are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before the world.” (Romans 3:19)
The law shuts our mouth and opens our eyes:
– It condemns, but it does not convert.
– It challenges us, but does not change us.
– It points the finger, but cant give mercy.
– It loves us without excuse… and it drives us to Jesus, who has the answer we are looking for.
The law is like a moral mirror and we do not always like what we see.
But don’t get mad at the mirror when it shows something dirty on your face?
Why get mad at the Law of God?
The whole purpose of the Law is to send us to Jesus – the one who can help, save, redeem, cleanse, and heal.
The Bible says that when Jesus died on the cross:
“He forgave all our sins. He cancelled the record of the charges against us and took it away by hailing it to the cross.” (Colossians 2:13-14)
Yes, in the 10 Commandments I find absolute truth.
But I also find standards that I can never live up to in my own ability.
That is why we need Jesus to change our life and heart, and then I have the desire to obey God’s commands out of love and devotion instead of mere duty.