Book Review: Developing A Biblical Worldview
“Developing A Biblical Worldview: Seeing Things God’s Way” by Dr. C. Fred Smith (B&H Publishing, 2015) is an excellent book for any Christian interested in making disciples and defending Christianity.
Everyone has a “view of the world” that affects their perspective on life and guides the choices they make every day.
“… most people within any particular subculture, or demographic group, have a shared worldview that enhances the quality of community life and facilitates communication between group members. Our own worldview is affected by the perspectives that we see and hear.” (Introduction to Developing A Biblical Worldview, p 1)
Christians also have a worldview and it’s based on the Bible, God’s revelation of Himself.
Dr. Smith, Associate Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies at Liberty University Baptist Theological Seminary, does a wonderful job defining what a Biblical Worldview is and what it isn’t.
“Far from being limited to a particular aspect of life, the biblical worldview is comprehensive. It includes everything related to the doctrines, values, priorities, and understanding of how the world works that the Bible commends and promotes. Its looks at the modern world through the lenses of the Bible rather than looking at the Bible using the lenses of the modern world. The Bible should determine how you understand reality, yourself, and those around you, and how you solve problems. It is not something we ‘adopt’ in a single moment, but rather it is something we ‘develop’ over a lifetime. This is why it is more complex than a mere list of doctrines and moral values.” Introduction, What A Biblical Worldview Is, p 5
Dr. Smith explains the different “kinds” of worldviews and how to design a rubric that will raise questions that lead to serious examination. Smith uses four questions to examine a person’s worldview: Who am I? Where am I? What is wrong? What is the answer? He then looks at how various heroes in the Bible might have answered those questions in the middle of their specific challenges.
Two important chapters to Americans are Chapter 6 – “The Four Worldview Questions from America’s Perspective” and Chapter 7 – “Applying the Biblical Worldview to Popular Culture.” Dr. Smith shares great insight into the difficulties Christians face in presenting the Biblical Worldview because of the individualism and emotional disconnection of people in the U.S. His views on both our history, politics and media are a great help in understanding the call American Christians have to “make disciples.”
Dr. Smith closes the book beautifully by sharing “Barriers to Developing a Biblical Mind-Set” and “Developing a Biblical Worldview.” Here are a couple of important thoughts from each of those chapters:
Barriers to Developing a Biblical Mind-Set – “There are numerous barriers to developing a biblical mind-set. For one thing, we live in a culture that holds to a decidedly non biblical worldview in many respects, much as the church in the first century did. Unlike them we live in a world where Christianity is no longer ‘new’ or ‘radical’ but is seen as staid, ‘respectable,’ and even moribund. Many churches, and Christians, are much more influenced by the larger culture than by the Scriptures.”
Developing a Biblical Worldview – “Developing a biblical worldview is a lifetime process of learning and growing in Jesus Christ. We should commit to this lifelong process of growing spiritually, developing a more biblical worldview and living it out, even in the face of an increasingly unbiblical culture around us. We are always, in Christ Jesus, a ‘work in progress’ and we should rest in that reality.”
I “highly” recommend this new book by Dr. C. Fred Smith to every Christian who wants to defend the Christian worldview and make disciples of all nations.
- Who Are We?
- Where Are We?
- What Is Wrong?
- What Is the Answer?
- Understanding Worldview through Scriptural Examples
- The Four Worldview Questions from America’s Perspective
- Applying the Biblical Worldview to Popular Culture
- Barriers to Developing a Biblical Mind-Set
- Developing a Biblical Worldview
“Fred Smith has provided a marvelous tool to assist every believer….Eminently biblical, yet readable and practical, this book will equip you for frontline cultural engagement. Highly recommended.” David Allen, Dean of the School of Theology, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
“Fred Smith’s Developing a Biblical Worldview is a breath of fresh air and a much needed corrective to our current cultural malaise. I highly recommend this book. You will be the better for reading it.” Robert B. Stewart, Professor of Philosophy and Theology, Greer-Heard Chair of Faith and Culture, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary
“Developing and applying the biblical worldview is essential for all Christians. Smith articulates a compelling and creative approach for all followers of Christ to develop the biblical framework for belief and action.” Lew Weider, Professor of Biblical Worldview, Liberty University
Developing a Biblical Worldview: Seeing Things God’s Way, B&H Academic, 2015, 200 pages