A United Methodist Pastor's Theological Reflections

"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory (nikos) through our Lord Jesus Christ." - I Corinthians 15:57

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Reclaiming a Biblical Worldview

During my morning devotions today, I read Psalm 71:15,16 which says,

"My mouth will repeat your righteous acts and your saving deeds all day long. I don't even know how many of those there are! I will dwell on your mighty acts, my Lord. Lord, I will help others remember nothing but your righteous deeds."

When I read this, I had one of those "duh!" moments where I realized just how much our worldview shapes our understanding of scripture and spirituality in general.

The prevailing 21st century secularized western civilization worldview is that there is very little if no overlap between a higher power and earthly affairs. Even those of us who attend church, read our bibles, pray, and seek to live out our faith are easily influenced by this worldview. This worldview has redefined "miracles" as those occurrences that happen infrequently and only in very dramatic ways.

My scripture reading from Psalm 71 today reminds me that this is not what the bible means when we think of "miracles." Actually, the word "miracle" doesn't even appear in the bible. The bible refers to "signs and wonders." The Psalm reading uses the phrases, "righteous acts," "saving deeds," and "mighty acts."

We might be tempted to read these phrases through the lenses of our modern day understanding of "miracles," but then the Psalmist says that he doesn't even know how many "of those (saving deeds) there are" because there are so many!

The Psalmist is reminding us that God is at work in the world all of the time, not just when the Red Sea was parted for Moses or when Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead!

If it is true that these daily occurrences of God's presence and signs of grace are happening all around us, then maybe my worldview needs to adapt to a more biblical worldview where God isn't just "the man upstairs" while we go about our business down here.

Not only does the Psalmist have us rethink our worldview, we also are called to think about these signs of God's presence "all day long" AND "help others remember nothing but God's righteous deeds."

This is why small groups in the church are so important! They help us to embrace the biblical worldview that God is present throughout the day in small and big ways. When we meet with other Christians in a small group and share how we have seen God at work during the week, we are embracing the worldview that God is present in our everyday lives.

Where do you see God at work in your day to day living? What does it mean to reclaim a biblical worldview? Are we sharing these "holy moments" with others on a regular basis? 

I think the Psalmist is on to something here, because I experienced the presence of Christ yesterday in a very real way, and I can't wait to tell my small group about it.

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