Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sunday Quote: Nick Pollard on Worldviews

"As inviduals develop, they do seem to adopt certain answers to the fundamental questions of life. These answers are put together into a comprehensive system - a view of the world. At the same time, however, this view of the world becomes the way they view the world. It becomes the spectacles through which they look, the grid upon which they organize reality. This view affects the way they answer the fundamental questions of life, and so on. If we understand worldviews this way, we can see why they are so hard to change. They tend to become firmly entrenched because they constantly reinforce themselves through the self-sustaining feedback loop."

- Nick Pollard, Evangelism Made Slighly Less Difficult, 35-36


Anonymous said...

Question: Why does it seem that presuppositionalist-only apologists seem to hold to a theistic worldview and deny the veracity of such things as natural law? Seems that apologists who embrace historical/classical/evidential apologetics (along with presup) are more consistent, since they acknowledge natural law/common grace and are able to distinguish a theistic/deistic worldview from a decidedly Christian worldview. Does that make sense? Any thoughts?

Ex N1hilo said...


I'll speak for myself. I don't reject Natural Theology. I don't know how common my view is among those who tend toward a presuppositional stance on apologetics. Although I will say that I would be surprised if you could find a Presuppositionalist who rejects Natural Theology outright. What is rejected is what is seen as the misuse, the misapplication, of Natural Theology.

My view is that if we know anything, it is because God has made it known to us. At the top of the list of what we know is the existence of God Himself. All men know that they have a Creator and Judge, because God has made Himself known to us. Romans chapter one is very clear on this. We have an innate knowledge of God that He has built into us (sorry, empiricists), to which the conscience, language, and the capacity of reason attest; a knowledge of God garnered from the world around us, “natural theology”; and a knowledge of God from verbal. propositional revelation, found in the Scriptures.

So, why do so many spend so much time and effort trying to convince people of what they already know? I'd like to see more time spent on presenting the Law and the Gospel and less on the traditional theistic proofs. Better use of the time God has given us, imo.

Of course, we can learn from the natural world, since it is God's world and it declares His glory; and He has given us a measure of ability to learn from Him through the study of it. This is why modern science was founded, largely by Christians, who desired to learn to “think God's thoughts after Him.” Of course, there were non-Christians—philosophers, mathematicians, and others—who contributed to the project. Thank God for common grace.

But, I am convinced; the way to look at Natural Theology is to see it as a useful, although tentative, way of learning more about the One who has made us, that we may glorify Him all the more. To use it to build a case for the existence of a deity, is to acquiesce to validity of the unbeliever's quest: To put God on trial with the hope of convicting and executing Him.

Also, to give Natural Theology preeminence or even mere emphasis over Biblical Theology is to repeat and reinforce the incident that took place in the Garden. It is the Word of God, the propositional, verbally stated truth from God, that is the very highest authority that exists. And it is the height of foolishness to consider the words of anyone contradicting it (“Yea, hath God said...”), or the evidence presented (And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise...), and using these to judge the very words of God Himself. This is true even when we seek to use these things to validate the truth of God's word.

I'll use the example of a popular apologetics ministry. Hugh Ross is a man, who, it seems to me, loves God and loves his Savior, Jesus Christ, and seeks to being glory to God. However, he talks so much about science, and the theories that are currently accepted, as evidence from which we should conclude that the Bible is true, literally “reasons to believe.” That is backwards. There is no higher standard than the word of God, no standard by which to judge the word of God, no standard to which we should seek to conform the word. Theories change. They should be judged by Scripture. The word of God is everlasting.

Of course, our understanding of God's word is imperfect, and incomplete, but we need to seek to derive our understanding from the Scripture, rather than trying to import our understanding into it.

Davitor said...

I'm inquiring here if anyone can answer what is the worldview of a new born baby?

Anonymous said...

I agree, world views have a huge impact on how we see everything around us.

as far as a new born baby, my guess is the world view develops as the baby interacts with the world or environment it experiences in relation to the genetics it has been given. this could start with conception or the day the baby was born or some other time. i have no idea when world views start but that is my guess on how world views develop.

Davitor said...

So if its logical to say the baby has no worldview that we can all claim that at one point in our lives we had no worldview?

Anonymous said...

Davitor, I would say yes.

Chad said...


So if its logical to say the baby has no worldview that we can all claim that at one point in our lives we had no worldview?

With all due respect, why does this matter? Are you trying to make a point that I am perhaps missing?


Davitor said...

Thanks Paul and since we can all agree that we were all born with no worldview that the creator wanted it like?
Chad why does this matter? Just simply making a logical observation that at one point in all our lives the worldview was just the way the creator wanted it to be.

Anonymous said...

Davitor, I am not sure i follow. i do not believe in a world view when we are born or at least when we are conceived (maybe we have one by the time we are born that developed in the womb, i am not sure) and believe it develops as our genetics or physical bodies and brain interact with our environment. This is just my guess but i see reason to believe we would have one before this time.

Stephen said...

Using this same logic, does God want us to weigh between 6-8lbs our whole life?
Does he want us to read?
Does he want us capable of speech?
Should we ever be able to eat solid food?
Are teeth an abomination?

I would say they did not have a worldview, but that there worldview was pending, developing. In a sense, their worldview is bent solely on adding information at this point.

Anonymous said...

correction on my last sentence ... "This is just my guess but i do not see reason to believe we would have one before this time." ... i added "do not" and well, that is kind of important and what I was thinking, just not typing. :)

Davitor said...

Stephen we do not have a choice with our bodily growth or our teeth but we do have a choice of what we want to learn or eat.

Unknown said...

What about when God gives people a deluding influence so that they believe the lie much stronger than if they were just thinking on their own?
How do you figure that into a person's ability to change their worldview?

He does this because people have chosen the lie afer many attempts of God breaking into their world to save them, yet they continually spurn His love. And since God Loves them, He wants to help them to do whatever it is they want to do. So he helps them to disbelieve because that is wha they want to do. It is an act of kindness on God's part to help them to not believe.

Davitor said...

Vito if God is omniscient then how do you figure that He needs a certain number of attempts before He knows when to give up and start deluding?

Unknown said...

Because He doesnt want somebody saying, after they are stuck burning in hell for eternity, that God was unfair and didn't give them enough chances.And He will be right, He did give them enough chances, and mr. or mrs. hell resident will not have a leg to stand on in their claim.
He isn't doing it for His sake, he's doing it for theirs, and for the sake of Perfect Justice.

Unknown said...

And by the way, a new born baby is already antagonistic to God. We are all born that way.

Davitor said...

Peace be with you, vito

Unknown said...

And Peace to you my friend.

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