Politics According to the Bible–A Biblical Worldview

Posted: November 15, 2010 in Uncategorized

Today we continue working through Dr. Wayne Grudem’s new book Politics According to the Bible.  Today we hit Chapter 4 “A Biblical Worldview.”

Before tackling specific issues, Wayne Grudem believes that it is essential to sketch out a Christian worldview for “[t]here are several basic, fundamental truths about God and his relationship to the world, and about human beings, that will affect nearly every political policy decision in one way or another.”  What are these truths? In broad strokes they are as follows:

A. God created everything, which means it is His and worship and obedience is His due.

B. The one true God reveals himself and his moral standards clearly in the Bible.  I imagine it is the modifier “clearly” that many will dispute.

C. The original creation was “very good” but even in this perfect world there was work to do in the Garden, which implies that work is part of the purpose for which we were created.

D. Because Adam and Eve sinned, there is moral evil (“sin”) in the heart of every human being.  Obviously, Grudem will encounter push back here, especially from “progressive Christians” who believe we are essentially good. 

Grudem goes on to argue a number of sub-points to the assertion that we are essentially sinful.  These are: (1)  There are moral standards external to the human race (i.e., God’s standard rather than a canon of conduct culled from observing fellow human beings); (2) human nature is not basically good.  Again, a lot of controversy here but Grudem points to texts such as James 1:13-15, which states that we are not tempted from without but from our own desires within.  More on this later.; (3) humans are still responsible for their actions even if they are inherently sinful (more on this later as well but, in the meantime, look up compatablism); (4) Some people are exceptionally evil and violent, which has implications for the criminal justice system and national defense.

E. Because Adam and Eve sinned, God place da curse on the entire natural world (Gen. 3:17-18).  Thus, nature is not the place to look for public policy advice.

F. God wants human beings to develop the earth’s resources and to use them wisely and joyfully (Gen. 1:28).  Here again, Grudem will encounter resistance.  He argues that we should use fossil fuels, etc. which will evoke howls but he also cautions that we must not abuse the earth’s resources.  Yet, many will argue that any use of fossil fuels is abuse–a tricky subject that he will unpack in a later chapter.

I think Grudem is essentially right but is surprised me that he didn’t include a discussion on the cross and its implications for Christian mission.  I believe that a Biblical worldview must include the mission of God to redeem His fallen creation and our duty to be instruments in that mission. 

We will look at Chapter 5 in a few days. Until then, grace and peace.

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Comments
  1. malin friess says:

    Excellent post. I found your blog by following your comments from DeYoung and De Restless.

    Blue Like Jazz still resonates with me even though I am a fairly conservative protestant who is currently a missionary in Kenya.

  2. narnia says:

    loving this blog more and more every day

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