Top Menu

The Christian Worldview

By Steven B. Cowan –

Every person has a worldview, but not every person has the same worldview.  In fact, there are several worldviews from which a person might choose if he were shopping for one. 1  A person who has committed his life to following Jesus Christ, of course, is not shopping for a worldview.  Supposedly, if he has been well-taught, he has adopted the Christian worldview, that is, the worldview taught in the Scriptures which he acknowledges to be the Word of the God he has sworn to follow.  This means that the Christian has the responsibility to understand and shape his life in accordance with the Christian worldview.  Why?  Because, as Chuck Colson puts it, “Our choices are shaped by what we believe is real and true, right and wrong, good and beautiful.  Our choices are shaped by our worldview.”2  In other words, our worldview determines how we live, and the Christian is called to live in accordance with God’s will.  So, the Christian must have a clear grasp of the worldview that comports with God’s will. Unfortunately, many Christians today are not very well-taught.  Influenced by the pervasive anti-intellectualism of the church in the last century, and the outright disdain of the mind in contemporary postmodern culture, many Christians have avoided even trying to learn the doctrines of the faith once-for-all delivered to the saints, much less the philosophical and ethical implications of that faith that comprise the Christian worldview.  But, I hope to remedy this problem somewhat in this article, at least for those who choose to read it.  First, I will explain just what a worldview is for those who may not be familiar with that term.  Second, I will spell out the major elements of the Christian worldview in contrast to its two major competitors, Naturalism and Pantheism.  Finally, I will draw out a few practical implications and applications of the Christian worldview.

What Is a Worldview?

Speaking somewhat technically, a worldview is a conceptual scheme or intellectual framework by which a person organizes and interprets his experience.  Less technically, a worldview is a way of looking at the world and one’s place in the world.  It is a perspective on reality.  Christian philosophers Norman Geisler and William Watkins liken a worldview to a pair of colored eyeglasses.  They write, If one looks at the same object through green-colored glasses he will see it as green, while another looking at the same object through red glasses will see it as red.  This is why people with different world views will often see the same facts in a very different way.  For example, an orthodox Jew looks at the exodus of Israel from Egypt as a divine intervention.  He sees it as a miracle.  A naturalist, on the other hand, would view the same event (if it really happened) as an anomaly, that is, as an unusual natural event.  Both could admit the same fact and yet come to entirely different conclusions concerning what that fact means.3 So, a worldview, like colored glasses, “colors” the way we view the world; it shapes our interpretation of the world.  But, exactly how does a worldview do that?  We need to go back to our more technical definition of a worldview as a “conceptual scheme.”  Ronald Nash provides some illumination at this point when he says, In its simplest terms a worldview is a set of beliefs about the most important issues in life. . . . A fancy term that can be useful here is conceptual scheme, by which I mean a pattern or arrangement of concepts (ideas).  A worldview, then, is a conceptual scheme by which we consciously or unconsciously place or fit everything we believe and by which we interpret and judge reality.4 What are these important beliefs that form a person’s worldview and by which he interprets and judges reality?  Chuck Colson, in his recent book, How Now Shall We Live?, divides the pertinent beliefs into three categories: [E]very worldview can be analyzed by the way it answers three basic questions:  Where did we come from, and who are we (creation)?  What has gone wrong with the world (fall)?  And what can we do to fix it (redemption)?  These three questions form a grid that we can use to break down the inner logic of every belief system or philosophy that we encounter. . .5 In sum, according to Colson, the key beliefs that make up a worldview include beliefs about the origin and nature of human life, the central problem(s) that human beings face, and the solution to that problem(s).  I think that Colson’s description of the beliefs that comprise a worldview are very helpful, and I will use his analysis in this article.  But we can be a bit more specific.  Expanding on the above, let us say that every worldview will include beliefs in the following seven fundamental areas, together with answers to many related questions:6 God (Theology)—Does God exist?  If so, how many?  What is God like? Ultimate Reality (Metaphysics)—What kinds of things are ultimately real?  Only matter?  Only spirit?  Matter and spirit? Knowledge (Epistemology)—What can we know?  How do we acquire knowledge? Human Beings (Anthropology)—What is our origin?  Do we have souls?  Do we have free will?  Is there life after death? Ethics—Is morality relative or absolute?  What is the basis for morality?  What is right and what is wrong? Plight—What is the most fundamental problem facing humanity?  What caused it? Solution—What is the solution to the fundamental problem?  How do we implement it?

The Christian Worldview

Now that we know what a worldview is, we can go on to describe the Christian worldview.  I will do so by explaining how Christianity deals with the seven fundamental areas outlined above in contrast with Naturalism and Pantheism (See the chart on page 20). God.  As philosopher Ronald Nash explains, the touchstone proposition that provides the most basic tenet of the Christian faith is: “Human beings and the universe in which they reside are the creation of the God who has revealed himself in Scripture.”7  At the root of the Christian faith, then, is the belief that the God of the Bible exists.  This contrasts sharply, of course, with the worldview known as Naturalism.  The naturalist believes that all that exists is the physical universe; that everything that does exist is composed of matter or that which may arise from matter.  Naturalism, by definition then, is atheistic, holding that no God or gods exist.  But the Christian worldview begins where the Bible begins, “In the beginning, God. . .” What is this God like?  Very much can be said at this point, but at minimum we should say that the God revealed in Scripture is omnipotent (all-powerful), omniscient (all-knowing), omnibenevolent (all-good), eternal, immutable, holy, just, and personal.  In addition, the Christian faith holds that this perfect, personal God is a Trinity.  That is, that the one, living God exists in three divine persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. These characteristics of God distinguish him very clearly from the God of Pantheism or the New Age Movement.  The Pantheist believes that God is everything and everything is God.  The trees, rocks, cats, dogs, you, me, the whole universe in fact, is God!  For the pantheist, God is completely immanent—that is, contained in, manifested in, the world.  Now Christians do believe that God is immanent in the sense that he is intimately involved with his creation.  He sustains it and acts providentially and sometimes miraculously within it.  But, God is also transcendent—over and above his creation.  God is not part of the world.  God is not identical to the world.  God does not depend on the world.  He is distinct from the world even though he acts within the world. Ultimate Reality.  For the naturalist, as we saw above, ultimate reality is matter.  All that exists, for him, is the physical universe.  For the pantheist, ultimate reality is spirit.  Most pantheists believe that the physical universe known by our five senses is an illusion (the Hindu word is maya).  Reality is purely spiritual or mental.  For the Christian, however, ultimate reality contains both material and spiritual elements.  The physical universe is real.  It is not an illusion.  But, the physical universe is not all there is.  The universe is the creation of a triune, personal God who is not a material object.  As Jesus said, “God is spirit” (John 4:24).  And this spiritual God has created other spiritual beings (angels) and some beings who have both spiritual and material components (human beings). It should also be pointed out under this heading that on the Christian worldview, the physical universe is not a closed system that operates entirely according to fixed natural laws.  Since God created the world ex nihilo (out of nothing) and sustains its existence at every moment, he can and does intervene within the course of the world’s history.  The god of Deism8 is not the Christian God. Knowledge.  The Christian worldview eschews skepticism, teaching that God created us in his own image with the capacity to understand not only the created order, but to have personal knowledge of God as well.  This again makes for a sharp contrast with other worldviews.  Naturalism, since it claims that the only thing that exists is the material universe, claims that the only reliable source of knowledge is the scientific method which, of course, is supposed to give us the clearest picture of things physical.  This view that science is the only appropriate source of knowledge is called scientism. Pantheism, on the other hand, opts for mysticism as its epistemology.  Remember that for the pantheist the physical universe is maya (illusion).  You cannot have knowledge of something that is not real.  Having knowledge of an unreal physical universe would be like having knowledge of unicorns or tooth fairies.  The whole idea is meaningless.  So, the pantheist is not going to put much credence in an epistemological method like science which purports to give us knowledge of a world that is only maya.  Moreover, the pantheist also believes that the individual self and its mind are illusions.  So, pantheism does not advocate the use of human reason as a valid source of knowledge any more than sense experience.  For the pantheist, the only way to have anything that might be called knowledge is through mystical, subjective experience achieved through meditation or some other technique that alleges to transcend the mind and the senses. But this so-called mystical knowledge is not like anything we normally understand when we use the word “knowledge.”  For what we come to “know” through mystical experience cannot be understood by the mind or described in words.9 The Christian worldview has always repudiated both mysticism and scientism.  Instead, it embraces a theory of knowledge which sees the senses as designed by God to yield accurate information about the physical world, and sees the mind as an instrument that can see, in and through the physical world, evidence of realities that cannot be captured by the scientific method alone (cf. Rom. 1:19-20, 32).  While avoiding mysticism, the Christian nevertheless believes that he can know not only the physical world, but at least some aspects of the spiritual world.  The Christian especially believes that he can know that God has in fact revealed spiritual truths to human beings in the pages of the Holy Scriptures.  This last point marks the most crucial distinction in Christian epistemology—whereas naturalism locks knowledge within the box of the material world and pantheism locks out knowledge of any kind, the Christian believes that the Creator of the universe has unlocked the box through divine revelation.  We are not left to ourselves to discover the truth by ourselves, but God has spoken the truth to us. Human Beings.  While pantheists see human beings as at best purely spiritual beings and naturalists see human beings as purely physical machines, the Christian worldview teaches that we are a duality of body and soul.10  That is, human beings have a material, physical component (body) and an immaterial, spiritual component (soul) that co-exist and interact.11  This dualism provides a coherent account of human free agency and of life after death. Moreover, the Christian view of human origins provides a basis for the sanctity of human life.  The pantheist sees the individual human being as an illusion.  Accordingly the individual self has no purpose or meaning, and his only prospect is either to continue a meaningless existence of maya forever or to be extinguished through mystical union with God (who alone really exists). The naturalist views the human being as a cosmic accident.  He is not the creation of a personal God, but he came into existence   for no reason through blind evolutionary processes like natural selection.  Mankind has no purpose on this view; no real significance or value other than what he creates for himself.  Bertrand Russell, the famous atheistic philosopher, admitted this dreadful consequence of naturalism.  He wrote, That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; . . . that all the labors of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system. . .—all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand.12 But, the Christian worldview says that a personal God created mankind in his own image with the purpose to “glorify God and enjoy him forever.”  God gives human life meaning and value. Ethics.  Both Pantheism and Naturalism logically lead to moral relativism.  As we have already seen, the pantheist believes that ultimate reality is inaccessible to human reason.  It cannot be captured in human categories or human language.  One can never say about God, for example, that he has such-and-such an attribute.  All one can say is “neti neti” (not this, not that).  This means that words like “good,” “evil,” “right,” and “wrong” have no meaning when applied to God/Reality.  This implies that moral concepts like good and evil are aspects of maya and are thus unreal.  Some pantheists openly admit this.  The medieval Hindu Shankara said that “to him who has obtained the highest aim no obligation can apply.”13 Shirley MacLaine wrote that evil “doesn’t exist.”14 Moreover, since pantheists view human beings as essentially divine, it makes sense that they would view morality as relative since gods can make up their own rules.  According to New Ager Douglas James Mahr, “God is everything—He is every thing.  So any thing you do, you have an inner action in divinity.  Remember that, and do what you want to do.”  He later adds, “Contemplate the love of God; how great this Entity-Self is, that is all-encompassing, that will allow you to be and do anything you wish and hold yourself judgeless.  God has never judged you or anyone.  If He has then He has judged himself, for who be you but He.”15 If Pantheism leads to moral relativism because it holds that we are gods, Naturalism, oddly enough, leads to moral relativism because it claims that we are nothing.  Since human beings originate in a meaningless cosmic accident, and have no value or purpose, then it follows that there can be no basis for objective morality.  For the naturalist, morality develops like everything else, because of blind, evolutionary processes.  What is right and what is wrong are simply what each culture or each individual person chooses them to be.  Now, of course, some atheists have tried to avoid this conclusion, but many have honestly embraced the logic of their worldview.  J.L. Mackie, for example, asserts, “Moral properties constitute so odd a cluster of qualities and relations that they are most unlikely to have arisen in the ordinary course of events without an all-powerful god to create them.”16  And Jean-Paul Sartre declared that “my freedom is the unique foundation of values and nothing, absolutely nothing, justifies me in adopting this or that particular value, this or that particular scale of values.”17 The Christian worldview, however, has an adequate foundation for objective moral values.  Because we believe in the existence of an all-good and personal God, we believe that the existence of real moral values makes sense.  As atheist J. L. Mackie would agree, moral values are not odd in a universe created by God.  And since human beings are created in God’s image and thus have dignity and value, those moral principles are valid which uphold the sanctity of human life and declare it wrong to lie, cheat, steal, and kill. Plight.  What is wrong with the world?  Why are things not the way we think they ought to be?  Everyone expresses frustration and distress over the injustice and suffering that fills the world.  Everyone seeks to improve his lot in life, believing that his present circumstances could be better.  The world as a whole, and our individual lives, are not ideal.  As you might guess, different worldviews give different answers to explain the human condition. The pantheist, believing that the imperfect world we live in is maya, places the blame on karma (the law of cause and effect) by which a person’s attachment to this world causes him to experience reincarnation and thus further meaningless existence in this world.  In other words, the problem is that we don’t realize that this world is a meaningless illusion, that we are in fact one with God, and instead we tend to love this illusory world too much.  Such love creates what the pantheist calls “bad karma,” and this in turn causes us to reenter this world after death in a new incarnation.  Our plight, says the New Ager, is that we haven’t come to grips with the fact that this world is maya and learned to distance ourselves from it. The naturalist has a much less dramatic and perhaps simpler explanation of our plight.  All the problems that the human race has ever experienced are the result, he says, of ignorance and superstition.  People suffer from disease because we are ignorant of its true cause and/or cure.  People go to war with other nations because they were ignorant of how to produce the goods they coveted in the other nation, or they didn’t know how to cooperate, or they suffered from misunderstandings caused by racial and cultural prejudice.  People steal because they are denied opportunities to learn a trade by the rich and powerful.  The problem, that is, is that we don’t know enough yet and/or we have given the wrong answers in the past (usually the wrong answers come from religion). What does the Christian faith say is the problem?  Answer:  “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23).  On the Christian worldview, ultimately all of our problems can be traced back to sin in one way or another.  I suffer in some way either because I have sinned or someone has sinned against me.  I have a headache right now because I drank too much whiskey last night or because someone hit me over the head.  Or, if none of those happens to be true (because maybe I simply slipped and fell), my headache can be traced back to the fact that we live in a fallen world in which pain is a reality that came about due to what Adam and Eve did in the Garden of Eden.  But the bottom line is that the human plight is sin.  The problem is not illusion or ignorance, but the intentions of our own evil hearts.  And, according to the Scriptures, our hearts are in bondage to sin.  Paul puts it this way: The sinful mind is hostile to God.  It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.  Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God.  (Rom. 8:7-8) As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins. . . . Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. (Eph. 2:1, 3) The Bible teaches that we are sinners by nature; that our hearts are turned away from God and enthralled with evil—and there is absolutely nothing we can do about it. Solution.  Given the alternative plights noted above, it should not be hard to figure out what the respective solutions are.  The pantheist needs to escape karma and the cycle of reincarnation.  What does he propose as the solution?  He advocates, in many cases, a rigorous process of meditation or yoga in which the mind and body are disciplined to lose their attachment to the world.  When such detachment finally comes, it is alleged that the person is loosed from the grip of karma and his self-identity is absorbed in his reunion with God. Naturalists, naturally, propose education as the remedy for the ignorance that has caused our predicament.  When everyone is released from superstition and prejudice, and technology has eradicated disease, and science has provided us with an adequate “theory of everything,” then utopia will have arrived. The Christian faith, though, realizing that the problem is not “out there” but “in here” (that is, in the human heart) knows that the solution to our problem cannot be found in our own devices.  Ascetic discipline and education cannot change the human heart.  The problem is not a lack of effort or a lack of information, but a lack of ability to change our corrupt nature.  Therefore, the solution to our plight must come from outside of us.  It must come from God.  We need him to transform us; to renew our nature.  The biblical term for this transformation is regeneration or the “new birth.”  What’s more, we need him to forgive our sins and to provide us with a substitute righteousness whereby we can withstand his holy wrath against our sin. The Christian faith is that God has graciously and mercifully provided us with what we need.  He sent his only Son into the world to die on the cross in our place, taking our punishment upon himself and appeasing the justice of God (Rom. 3:21-26; 5:8).  Based on Christ’s substitutionary sacrifice, God provides elect sinners with the new birth which gives them spiritual life and a heart that is pliable to God’s will.  God then effectually calls those he regenerates to faith and repentance.  Thus God justifies all those who trust in Christ, forgiving their sins and imputing Christ’s perfect righteousness to them (1 Cor. 1:30; Phil. 3:7-9).  Furthermore, God promises that someday, at Christ’s glorious return, all evil and pain will be eradicated forever, and that God’s people will be resurrected to enjoy a wonderful, sinless and eternal life. Such is the nature of the Christian worldview.  We turn now to consider some practical implications and applications of these truths.

Implications and Applications of the Christian Worldview

The reader should not think that the above discussion is simply theoretical.  He should not assume that none of this has any impact on his daily life.  Quite the contrary!  An understanding of the contours of the Christian worldview should have a profound impact on the one who believes that it is true.  In fact, no area of a person’s life will be unaffected by the principles inherent in the Christian worldview.  This truth is born out in the primary practical implication of the Christian worldview.  It is this:  each and every human being has an absolute duty to live his life coram deo. The Latin phrase coram deo means “before the face of God.”  What I mean by this is that we have an obligation to live our lives conscientiously in the presence of God.  That is, we are to live with an awareness that God exists; that he is both watching and watching over us; that he cares what we think and do, and holds us accountable for what we think and do; and that we are in fact to live our lives in accordance with his revealed will for his glory. Let me now spell out what living coram deo means for our lives both privately and publicly. Private Life.  With regard to one’s everyday personal and private existence, living before the face of God for his glory will involve at least the following two items: ​1.  The pursuit of holiness.  The Apostle Paul urged Christian people (who are, by the way, the only people who can live out the Christian worldview) to “walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called” (Eph. 4:1).  To walk worthy of our calling is, basically, to love God with all of our might and to love our neighbors as ourselves.  It is to “be holy as God is holy” (1 Peter 1:16), which involves turning our back on worldly ways and seeking to conform our thoughts and behaviors to God’s ways (cf. Rom. 12:1-2).  Since it is the Spirit-empowered Word of God which produces holiness in us (cf. John 17:17; Heb. 4:12; 1 Peter 2:1-2), the pursuit of holiness necessitates Bible study consciously aimed at the mortification of sin. ​2.   The development of a Christian mind and heart.  Living out the Christian worldview means learning to think “Christianly.”  This I think is where most contemporary believers drop the ball.  They may be converted, they may read their Bibles and go to church, and do many other spiritual things.  But because they fail to grasp the fact that the Christian faith is a world and life view, they don’t think in the distinctive ways that the Christian worldview requires.  And because they don’t think Christianly, they often do not feel and act Christianly (i.e., they may have misplaced affections and make wrong choices). The Christian who thinks Christianly will have an eternal perspective on life.  He will not be tossed to and fro by his circumstances, but will be guided by eternal principles and values.  He will place his hopes on heavenly things, not earthly things.  He will trust God and His Word more than his peers and feelings.  And he will learn to love the things that God loves. But, to have such an eternal perspective and think Christianly about life requires that the Christian devote himself to developing his mind and heart.  To do this, the Christian needs to not only read the Bible, but study it systematically and thematically.  In addition, he should devote some time and energy to studying other things like philosophy, art, literature, and history.18 What is more, the Christian should work hard to develop skill in evangelism and apologetics.  All this is part and parcel of developing the Christian mind and heart. Public Life.  There are also two major areas regarding public life that the Christian who wants to live coram deo will be concerned about: ​1.  Bringing Christian values into every sphere of life.  Despite popular opinion, no religion worth its salt can be confined entirely to the private sphere.  And the Christian faith positively requires that we take our faith to the streets and seek to expand God’s Kingdom into every area of human existence.  Jesus said that we are “salt and light” (Matt. 5:13-14), and he demanded that our light not be hidden and our salt not remain in the shaker.  To fulfill this cultural mandate will involve engaging the family, the business world, the educational institutions, government, the art industry, the media, legal and medical professions, and every other sphere of life with the truth claims, principles, and values of the Christian faith. How do we do this?  There are ways we can influence these areas of culture at the institutional level, but primarily we bring the Kingdom of God into the world one person at a time as we interact with the people we live and work with.  We model before their eyes a life of Christian virtue.  We show them the superiority of a life lived in accordance with Christian principles.  We lovingly challenge their non-Christian worldviews, and persuade them of the value of a Christian perspective in each sphere of life.  In other words, we do apologetics. ​2.  Evangelizing sinners.  Closely connected with the previous point is the mandate to “make disciples of all nations” (Matt. 28:20).  It is not our goal as citizens of God’s kingdom to simply get unbelievers to adopt a certain philosophical perspective that we call the Christian worldview.  Nor is it our goal to lead our cultural institutions to abide by Christian principles, as helpful as that may be to society.  Our real goal is to lead people to faith in Christ.  This means that we must confront unbelievers with the righteous demands of a Holy God and their abject failure to meet those demands.  And then to show them the mercy of God in Christ Jesus that may be theirs by grace through faith. As you can see from this sketch of the Christian worldview, God demands quite a bit from us.  Living coram deo is a very tall order.  But remember that the God who demands much also provides much.  He promises that as we “work out our salvation with fear and trembling,” he is at the same time at work in us “to will and to do according to his good pleasure” (Phil. 2:12-13).  And because that is true, we “can do all things through him who gives [us] strength” (Phil. 4:13). Steven B. Cowan (Ph.D., University of Arkansas) is Associate Director for the Apologetics Resource Center.  He is the general editor of the recent book Five Views on Apologetics (Zondervan, 2000).

Worldviews Contrasted

Naturalism :

God  No God Ultimate Reality Materialism; All that exists is the physical, material universe Knowledge Scientism; the only source of knowledge is the scientific method Human Beings  Result of random process of evolution; purely physical beings Ethics  Relativism; no objective moral values Plight  Ignorance and superstition Solution  Education and Technology

Pantheism:

God Everything is God or a part of God Ultimate Reality  Idealism; All that exist is spirit; physical world illusion Knowledge  Mysticism; the only source of knowledge is mystical experience Human Beings  Inherently divine; physical aspect result of illusion Ethics  Relativism; no objective moral values Plight Illusion and Reincarnation Solution  Meditation and detachment from physical world

Christian Theism:

God  God exists and is distinct from His creation Ultimate Reality Dualism; real physical universe exists that is created by God. Knowledge  Revelation is a source of knowledge as well as reason and science Human Beings  Created in God’s image; spiritual and physical beings Ethics  Objective moral values revealed by God Plight  Sin; alienated from God Solution  Salvation by God’s grace through faith in Christ’s atonement

NOTES

1 There are two very accessible books that describe in detail all of the major worldview “options”:  Norman L. Geisler and William D. Watkins, Worlds Apart: A Handbook on World Views, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1989); and James W. Sire, The Universe Next Door: A Basic World View Catalog (Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity, 1976). 2 Charles Colson and Nancy Pearcey, How Now Shall We Live? (Wheaton, Ill.: Tyndale House, 1999), 13. 3 Geisler and Watkins, Worlds Apart, 12. 4 Ronald H. Nash, Worldview in Conflict (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1992), 16. 5 Colson and Pearcey, How Now Shall We Live?, 14. 6 In what follows, I am combining Colson’s analysis of the elements of a worldview with that provided by Ronald Nash in his Worldview in Conflict, 26-32. 7 Ibid., 52. 8 Deism is the view that God either cannot or does not act within the world.  Rather, God created the world to operate on its own according to fixed, mechanical laws which do not need or allow his intervention. 9 For a further discussion of pantheistic mysticism see David K. Clark and Norman L. Geisler, Apologetics in the New Age: A Christian Critique of Pantheism (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1990), 159-183. 10 Some Christians, of course, hold a view called trichotomy, which holds that human beings have three components: body, soul, and spirit.  The reader can safely assume that I reject the trichotomy view.  For a concise critique of trichotomy and defense of the dualistic view see Anthony A. Hoekema, Created in God’s Image (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1986), 204-218.  A slightly more technical treatment can be found in Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, vol. 2 (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1979), 42-51. 11 For a superb discussion and defense of the interaction of soul and body see J.P. Moreland and Scott Rae, Body and Soul: Human Nature and the Crisis in Ethics (Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity, 2000). 12 Bertrand Russell, “A Free Man’s Worship,” in Mysticism and Logic (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1957), 45. 13 Shankara, Vedanta Sutras, 2.3.48. 14 Shirley MacLaine, Dancing in the Light (Toronto: Bantam, 1985), 247. 15 Douglas James Mahr, Voyage to a New World (Lopez, WA: Masterworks, 1985), 36, 61. 16 J.L. Mackie, The Miracle of Theism (Oxford: Clarendon, 1982), 115. 17 Jean-Paul Sartre, Being and Nothingness (New York: Citadel, 1964), 38. 18 A great resource to help you start developing a Christian mind is J.P. Moreland, Love Your God with All Your Mind (Colorado Springs: NavPress, 1997).

This article can be found in the Areopagus Journal Building a Christian Worldview Volume 1 Number 2

2376 Lakeside Drive
Birmingham, AL 35244
205-552-5597
x