Sunday, July 08, 2007

Family Driven Faith - Chapter 4 – Give Him Your Heart

Chapter 4 of Family Driven Faith moves on to the issue of giving our heart to God and in this the idea is not simply giving our emotions to God but giving our volition and will to Him as well. The goal here is to make sure that we do not simply have families that know and feel correctly but that they have a correct basis, biblical worldview, in which to do this. Building on the previous chapter Voddie describes biblical love as the foundation and having a biblical worldview as the frame. So we need to not only have a list of what needs to be done, even if it is biblical, but we need to have a biblical framework (worldview) that drives what we do.

Voddie begins with the idea that we really need to grasp, when we move from being an unbeliever to being one of God’s family “we must not only change our allegiance but also our language and thinking.” All too often Christianity is sold as simply a life enhancement additive so that the supposed new believer sees no reason to change but that could not be further from truth. We are not only to do what God commands but to submit all areas such as our will and thinking to Him and this is a radical departure from what seems to be ever present in the western view of Christianity today.

The main emphasis of this chapter is helping people to see not only a need to change their worldview but what that looks like. Francis Schaeffer defined worldview as the “grid through which (one) sees the world” and this is a good place to start. James Sire expands on this by adding that our worldview is composed of our assumptions which are those things we just believe and others would consider strange. The last definition of world view that is given is that which Church Colson and Nancy Pearcey use; that a worldview is “the sum total of our beliefs about the world, the big picture that directs our daily decision and actions.” These definitions give a good basis for understanding the whole concept of worldview which undoubtedly many have never even given a thought too even they obviously hold one.

Voddie then answers why children need a biblical worldview as well as what the basic elements of a worldview are. He gives some statistics I have heard before but if you have not they should give cause for concern and bring to light why this topic of raising families in a biblical manner is so important.

Researcher George Barna found that less than 10 percent of self-proclaimed “born-again Christians” in America have a biblical worldview. What’s worse, he found that only half (51 percent) of America’s pastors have a biblical worldview. The Nehemiah Institute (like the Barna Group) has discovered that some 85 percent of Christian teens do not believe in the existence of absolute truth. These young people, who identify themselves as followers of Christ, believe that truth is situational and relative.

Voddie breaks a Worldview down into 5 basic elements: Our view of God, man, truth, knowledge and ethics. He then does a good job of speaking to each of these and showing how they reveal ones worldview. He does this by contrasting the conflict between Secular Humanism and Christian Theism. What is, or should be, of concern is that all too many professing Christians we meet would hold to more of a Secular Humanistic belief system than a Christian Theistic one.

Voddie then ends the chapter by making sure that we see how to separate the idea of having a correct worldview and legalism. This is important because all too many people will have a tendency to mistake the difference between the two. He makes sure that the reader understands he is not saying we should not have limits and boundaries but it is when the those limits and boundaries extend outside scripture that we enter the realm of opinion and often legalism.

These first four chapters set a good foundation and framework for what we need to do to raise our families in a manner that honors God’s call for parents. Without this frame work we will have the tendency he has already mentioned of simply setting rules for our children that while at home they may follow but when gone will quickly jettison since they have no real basis for them. We need to not only raise our children with an understanding of what God expects of them but let them see it for themselves so that in the future when faced with decisions they will innately turn to God’s word rather than to some mythical list of does and don’ts or even to simply do what ever seems culturally acceptable at the time.

Next, Chapter 5 – Teach the Word at Home

No comments: