Recently, I wrote about how and why we are failing our students. But, what does it mean to teach from a christian worldview? The foundation of the Christian worldview is the conviction that in Christ are “hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col. 2:3). In other words, Jesus has the best information about everything. To live out a Christian worldview is to “think Christianly” about all of life. Here’s how I have tried to flesh out this conviction: Christianity actually rises to the level of being true or false (and there are good reasons to believe it’s actually true). And if Christianity is true, then it speaks to all of life; it makes a comprehensive claim on reality. “If Christianity should happen to be true – that is to say, if its God is the real God of the universe,” said G.K. Chesterton, “then defending it may mean talking about anything and everything. Things can be irrelevant to the proposition that Christianity is false, but nothing can be irrelevant to the proposition that Christianity is true.”
In light of that, I teach with the following core commitments. First, Christianity is a knowledge tradition, which means that truths about God, history, the spiritual life, and morality can actually be known, not merely believed (cf. Col. 1:9-10 and Luke 1:1-4). Second, I assume (and argue for) the existence of objective truth. That is, truth is discovered; not created by an individual or culture. These two commitments will give students the confidence to cut through the mindless sound bites and slogans so common in our culture today.
Teaching from a Christian worldview requires that we ask and answer four vital questions:
1.) What do Christians believe about this? (Understanding / Content)
2.) Why do Christians believe this? (Reasons / Evidence)
3.) Why does this matter to my life? (Integration / Ownership)
4.) As an everyday ambassador, how can I help others connect with this important truth? (Embodiment / Connection)
This isn’t everything that could be said. But I think it’s an important starting point. Our beliefs and our thought lives provide the live possibilities for us to choose from in the day in and day out of life. If our thoughts are mostly away from God, then our choices most likely will be as well. Renewing our mind is fundamental to being an apprentice of Jesus and worldview formation (Col. 3:1-3; Rom. 12:1-2). I have tried to flesh out and apply this approach in my latest book with Zondervan, Think Christianly: Looking at the Intersection of Faith and Culture.