Everyone has some type of worldview, but Christians are to hold a biblical worldview, which means that every decision and action should be shaped by the Truth that was from the beginning—Jesus Christ. The question to consider is not whether you have a worldview, but rather, is your worldview true? If Christians don’t use discernment, we can allow popular worldviews to confuse us. BJU Press is committed to upholding a biblical worldview in education. We also want to help you, as a homeschool parent or educator, understand different worldviews so you can help shape a biblical worldview in your children and make informed decisions about the curriculum you use.
What is a worldview?
A worldview is a set of basic beliefs, assumptions, and values that arise from a narrative about the world and produces individual and group action that shapes human culture. This definition of worldview can be broken down into three parts: basic beliefs, a master story, and action. Every worldview you evaluate will contain these elements.
Origin: Worldview comes from the German word Weltanshauung. Welt means “world,” and Anschauung means “point of view,” “opinion,” or “perception.”
What is a biblical worldview?
A biblical worldview (or a Christian worldview) is a worldview based on God’s unchanging Word. Since God is the Creator of everything in heaven and earth, He is the standard for truth. God is all-powerful, all-knowing, and unchanging.
The Bible contains the words of God, and God is Truth. Therefore, we can trust what it says (John 17:17). 2 Timothy 3:16 states that “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God.” Inspiration means that God “breathed it out.” The Holy Spirit guided and directed humans to write down and preserve His words through Scripture.
A biblical worldview is not just a theoretical idea. A biblical worldview changes the way we respond to major events in the world. How do you respond to a natural disaster? How do you respond to traffic? What do you do if your fast food order is wrong? How do you respond to a terrorist attack? What is our response to political turmoil? Someone with a biblical worldview is going to respond to these events through the lens of Scripture. While others may have their worldview shaken after a disaster, a Christian will respond with trust in God’s wisdom, confidence in Christ’s future return, and zeal for spreading the gospel.
Christians don’t rely on a biblical worldview only when major events happen. A biblical worldview informs how Christians prioritize their time and money, respond to leadership, raise their children, and respond to hurtful words and comments. God’s Word is a guide for all of life.
Other examples of worldviews
- Secular worldview: A secular worldview teaches that beliefs are a matter of personal preference, not absolute truth. Truth in a secular worldview comes from reason and science.
- Scientific worldview (Scientific Naturalism): Our Biblical Worldview textbook defines a scientific worldview as, “A worldview which holds that there is nothing but natural elements, principles, and relations of the kind studied by the natural sciences (p 307).”
- Postmodern worldview: Postmodernism believes there is no absolute truth. Personal truth is determined by your upbringing and culture. It believes that truth is just used to suppress and oppress the less powerful.
Why is a biblical worldview important?
A biblical worldview is important because it is the only true worldview. If we reject God’s word, we fail to see the world as it really is. Think of a worldview as a pair of glasses. If you have broken or discolored lenses or the wrong prescription, you won’t see the world correctly. A biblical worldview shows you the world as its Creator intended. We’d love to be able to see the world with perfect vision, but because of sin, our view is distorted. Using a biblical worldview corrects our vision and helps us see the world through the theme of God’s redemption.
A biblical worldview vs. a Christian worldview
When people discuss a Christian worldview, they are often speaking of a biblical worldview. However, it’s possible that characteristics of a Christian worldview are not biblical at times. The term biblical to describe a worldview means that the philosophy is consistent with Scripture and can be proven by Scripture. When discussing these two terms, Christian may describe the Christian religion, its branches, and all their denominations, not necessarily individual believers who are followers of Christ. Human actions and human organizations may or may not align with what the Bible teaches. Since we believe the Bible is the ultimate authority—always—we prefer to use the term biblical worldview in our curriculum instead of Christian worldview. We want to be clear that our worldview should be based in Scripture, and not in tradition. While tradition can be important and helpful, it is not our authority.
What does worldview mean in religion?
Every person has a worldview whether they are religious or not. However, the worldview of a religious person is easier to see and describe, so religious people may be more open about their worldview. For example, those who are Deistic, theistic, or pantheistic have aligned themselves with a set of beliefs or a group of people who think the same way. Many non-religious or secular people don’t believe that they have a worldview. But even if someone thinks all beliefs or opinions are valid, that is their worldview!
How to determine your worldview
Your beliefs, actions, and perspective of the world all define your worldview. Here are a few questions to ask when defining your view of the world:
- What are your basic beliefs?
- These are what we call the head and heart system. Your worldview affects how you think about things. Why do you think murder is wrong? Why is kindness important? What happens after this life? Your worldview is what determines your answers to these questions.
- A worldview is not simply intellectual—it also influences your feelings and desires. What do you love? What are you passionate about? Our heart can tell us a lot about our worldview. But the hearts, or emotions, can make a worldview inconsistent, wrong, and sometimes evil.
- What is the big story of the world?
- A person’s worldview also determines how they interpret past, present, and future. A worldview tells the story of where we came from, why we’re here, and where we’re going. This master story can also be called a metanarrative. How we tell stories is important, and how we view the big story of the world determines what stories we value and, most importantly, the stories we tell our children.
- What do my actions say about my beliefs?
- How we view the world also affects how we live. People’s actions are not isolated from what they believe. When talking about worldviews, it can be easy to focus on the intellectual, high-level aspects, but if a worldview doesn’t change the way we live, do we really believe the worldview we claim? Beliefs always impact our actions.
Culture and a biblical worldview
As we try to understand our own worldview, we will find ourselves influenced by other people. These influences are part of our culture. Culture is how a group collectively perceives the world. Culture unites us with others, and while it influences us, we can also influence it. But we should be wary of outside influences that do not align with Scripture.
Culture is not a bad thing; God created it! As we teach our children, we must teach them to see the world through the lens of God’s word. God created a good world. But sin entered the scene, and as a result, our hearts are twisted and bent away from God. The good news is that God redeemed us through His Son! One day God will come again and rule the whole world. Until then, culture will have the marks of sin.
Developing a biblical worldview
There are two main approaches for teaching a biblical worldview. The first approach presents evidence to convince people to change their worldview and encourages them to follow the evidence wherever it leads. However, we do not believe this is the approach the Bible takes. Belief helps us interpret evidence, not the other way around. This second approach to teaching worldview is to put the Bible first. If you look at God’s word through eyes of faith, you will begin to see life through a biblical worldview.
How to help your kids think biblically
- Begin at a young age! Find age-appropriate resources that address issues that your kids are currently facing.
- Teach them that Scripture impacts every area of life. It’s easy to adopt the secular mentality that math and science have nothing to do with a biblical worldview. But the reality is that God’s word impacts every area of our life!
- As a parent or guardian, live out your faith and belief in front of them. Teach by example!
- Find a community of like-minded believers that reinforce the biblical worldview you teach at home.
- Give your children opportunities to practice living out a biblical worldview. Making practical applications for each subject shows kids that God cares about math, grammar, and science!
- Writing skills enables them to communicate well and clearly and show love and support. Example: You could have your kids write a letter to a shut-in from your church.
- Math skills teach kids to solve problems and helps them serve others.
Example: You could use a lesson on fractions to bake cookies for a neighbor.
- Science teaches kids to glorify God and reflect His creation.
Example: Get a butterfly kit and watch a caterpillar turn into a butterfly to show how amazing God’s creation is.
- Reading helps children understand other cultures and love other people better. Example: Read stories from other cultures to show your children the beauty and diversity of humanity.
Biblical worldview curriculum
A homeschool curriculum that teaches a biblical worldview can be a great support to you! At BJU Press, every textbook that we create is built with a biblical worldview at its foundation. Biblical worldview is not something you can just tag on as a verse or an analogy—the Bible must be integrated into learning. Whatever subject we teach, we want students to not only know what God says about it but also apply the truth in their own lives.
While all our courses teach from a biblical worldview, two of our Bible courses are designed to teach students all the biblical principles and foundations that lead to a biblical worldview: Basics for a Biblical Worldview and Biblical Worldview. Our Bible curriculum is designed to first give students a knowledge of Scripture and then give them the tools to live out a biblical worldview.
It’s important to help children to evaluate worldviews and discern lies from truth, but our biblical worldview curriculum isn’t merely focused on tearing down false worldviews. We don’t want children to simply know arguments against postmodernism, scientific naturalism, or secularism—we want them to know what they believe and why they believe it. We want them to know Scripture.