Worldview is an eminently personal thing. People hold their worldview at the most deeply, personal level possible. And it must be noted, individuals have worldviews, not societies.
That being said, the worldview position which is held by the majority, or at least the most dominant people, in the society, will have the most pronounced effect on how the society functions. This is what determines the way moral issues are addressed in the culture at large. Policy decisions in the political realm, the subject matter taught in the classroom, the headlines in the news media and the content allowed in our entertainment industry are all decided by the people who control those arenas. And it is all based on the worldview beliefs of the people who are allowed to control those levers.
This principle can easily be seen in the way American society has changed over the last several decades and in the culture war battles which are being fought, even today. Back when a Christian theistic worldview dominated, things such as abortion, homosexual marriage, Christian symbols in the public square, pornography, sexual images over the airwaves, and the like, were evaluated almost exclusively from a Christian worldview perspective. Not that everyone in society agreed with the Christian point of view, but the majority, along with the ones who were in positions of authority, did. And the result was political and social policy which promoted Christian morality.
All one need do is read today’s headlines to see that things are dramatically different than they used to be. A different basis for evaluating morality is now in control. Virtually every political debate we see on television features someone advocating political policy which promotes abortion, homosexual marriage, socialist economics and the like. We see people like Charlie Sheen and Lady Gaga, with their total crassness, playing to sold out audiences. We see base sexuality on display on prime time television. We see news coverage overtly slanted to promote non and even anti-Christian political and social agendas. We see evolutionary theory taught in the classroom as if it were fact. And the list could go on.
So, what has changed? What has changed is the worldview foundation of the majority in society. A Naturalistic worldview is now more prominent on the nation’s stage than a Christian one. And in public polling, while a majority will still answer that they are Christian, a large percentage of those who claim to be Christian hold views which are patently not Christian. It is not unusual to find people who self-identify as Christians who believe in Naturalistic evolution, who don’t see anything wrong with people living together outside of wedlock, who don’t see a need to participate in a church, or who believe that homosexual marriage is acceptable. Basically, other worldview beliefs have seeped into the beliefs of a large percentage of people who call themselves Christian, but who have basically become something else without even realizing it. This has happened to such a large degree that it can safely be said that America is now a post-Christian society.
Unless there is a dramatic turn around, this trend will continue. And a dramatic turn around is basically in the hands of the Christian community. The only way a change will take place is if a massive number of people come to Christ to the extent that a new majority is forged of those who adhere to a Christian worldview. Unfortunately, there are not enough committed Christians who are willing to put themselves on the line to go out and fight the good fight.
There are two things that must happen if change is to occur. First, Christians must become fearless in sharing the gospel. A worldview change happens within individuals when they accept Christ. But as of now, there are more people coming into society, by whatever means (birth, immigration, falling into a non-Christian lifestyle, rejecting Christ), who do not hold a Christian worldview than those entering who do. We have to turn that around. Secondly, Christians must become well versed in the issues of the day and develop the ability to share why Christian values are superior to non-Christian values. We must be able to win the debate in the public square.
Christian worldview training is the key to both of these issues. We must not only know what we believe, but why we believe it. We must understand why the Christian faith represents the truth about the nature of reality and why other worldview positions do not. We must bite the bullet and apply ourselves to master the issues related to worldview by putting ourselves under a continuous personal discipleship training regimen. Then, we must stand strong in our faith as we live it out in the world. Only then is there any possibility that things will turn around.
© 2011 Freddy Davis