Tag Archives: Christian education

How Many Worldviews Are There and How is Christianity Unique Among Them?

Continuing with videos through Right Now Media, I want to continue with another series by Bobby Conway on worldviews. This series starts with an interview with Dr. Norman Geisler, author, professor, theologian, and world-renowned Christian apologist. In answer to the basic question of how many worldviews there are, Dr. Geisler limited his response to religions, and basically just listed what he says are the 7 basic worldviews.

  1. Theism – holds that there is a God beyond the bounds of this world, who created the world and can intervene and do miracles within the world. Judaism, Christianity and Islam are the three religions in this broader worldview.
  2. Deism – holds that there is a god similar to Theism, except that they believe that god does not intervene and cannot do miracles. Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, and Voltaire were deists.
  3. Finite Godism – holds that there is a god, but he is limited; his hands are tied by the world he created. Plato, Rabbi Harold Kushner (author of ‘When Bad Things Happen to Good People’) held to this worldview.
  4. Panentheism (different from Pantheism) – holds that god and the world are intertwined. Alfred North Whitehead, who developed the of Process philosophy ; John Cobb, a contemporary of Alfred Whitehead; and Charles Hartshorne, who developed Whitehead’s philosophy in what is known as Process Theology.
  5. Pantheism – holds that god IS all and all is god. Hinduism, Zen Buddhism, and Christian Science are the best examples of philosophies in this worldview.
  6. Polytheism – holds that there are many gods. Ancient Greeks, Romans, modern Wicca, and Neo-Paganism are all religions within this worldview.
  7. Atheism – the belief that there is no god. Much of the world today live as atheists. Whether they have examined the existence of any god or not, their belief systems revolve around explanations of the world without any god(s) at the helm.

Now, let’s look through this video series to examine what makes Christianity unique. First, do all religions lead us to God? Simply put, the answer is ‘no’. Religions teach things that are opposite to each other; and opposites cannot both be true. One particular point that Dr. Geisler made is that we can tell a counterfeit from the real thing, not by examining the similarities, but by the critical differences – those points over which religions teach clear and critical differences. For instance, some religions teach different ways to God. But, only Jesus Christ teaches that there is only one way to God, only one truth, and only one life; and that way is through Him (John 14:6).

Being interviewed about what distinguishes Christianity from other religions, Craig Hazen, Professor of Comparative Religion and Apologetics at Biola University, makes the point that leaders of other religions actually hate probing claims made by their religion, because they know what their religion can’t hold up to such scrutiny. Christianity, on the other hand, invites people to come and explore its claims and find out that they are true. He points out the claim that Paul makes in 1 Corinthians 15 that if Jesus did not rise from the grave, Christianity is just not true and your faith is worthless. And, yet, we know through forensic investigations that His resurrection is one of the most accurately recorded events in all of history.

One last look at the uniqueness of Christianity for this posting, Bobby Conway interviews Frank Turek, Apologist, Author and Speaker, who said Jesus came to live a sinless life, with two natures – that of God and that of man – and went on to be our mediator. One point that he makes is that in order to be a mediator, one must have one foot on both sides of the divide between us and God, which makes Jesus uniquely qualified to fill that role. Jesus mediates between us and God by taking our sins upon Himself. While all other religions require that we work our way to God, in Christianity, God comes to man through Jesus Christ and offers a free gift of salvation.

We’ll continue in my next posting.