11 thoughts on “Worldview summary (updated)

  1. The Christian Theistic chart is unfortunately skewed. The Crown, representing God, is OUTSIDE. If God in Christ created the universe, then He is prior to and outside it, hence two realities, not one connected one.

    • Hi Dr. Porter, I am the author of the summary. I don’t quite follow your argument about there being ‘two realities’ and therefore your comment that the diagram is ‘skewed’. So, let me explain the logic of the diagram which I have adapted from the Matthias Media’s 2 Ways the Live gospel tract diagrams (used with permission) and perhaps you could explain further what you mean. The Christian Theist diagram is intended to represent the biblical teaching that God is separate and distinct from His creation (unlike Pantheism) but is in total sovereign control over it (hence the crown is directly above the world not to one side as in Deism). Christian Thesim is distinguished from general Theistic belief by the fact that the man Jesus Christ has risen from the dead and ascended into heaven to rule the world (hence the word “Jesus” in the crown).

      • Cameron,
        Thank you for engaging. We are so used to the conventional wisdom (monism) that we often cannot see the difference. If, as you say, (and it is true) God is separate (no) and distinct (yes) from His creation, he is not one reality with it. He is his own reality, existing forever. Then, when there was no other reality than himself, he created the universe (all of our reality). He is not just the Lord of, but actually distinct from. Only Christ has somehow entered the creation. It is hard to get our heads around this implication. Therefore, the crown cannot be depicted as on the top side of the diagram (which is akin to Aristotle’s and Anselm’s First Cause), but actually above and outside the lines of your diagram. Read C.S. Lewis’s comments on monism and how hard it is to grasp and keep this deadly assumption out of our thoughts (Miracles, p. 114). Blessings.

  2. Dr. Porter, thanks for the reply. I certainly don’t want to be saying that Christian Theism is monistic but I don’t think my diagram is necessarily saying that. If you compare this diagram with the diagrams I have created for Pantheism and the Panentheism which are Monistic worldviews you can see that I have made a distinction between them and Christian Theism in their view of God’s relationship to the world. If anything, it is the Polytheism diagram that is skewed because Polytheism could also be regarded as Monistic but I have represented it more like monotheism than Pantheism.

  3. Cameron,
    Of course, we recognize the limits of metaphors or illustrations. Nevertheless, to be consistent, if you mean by the crown not touching the world that it is meant to depict a distinction between two different realities, that is good, and then, as you say, polytheism and theism are skewed, because they are really forms of monism. There is only one view that holds two realities, and the only reason is revelation: it was revealed to us that it is so. I still think that to be completely clear the crown should be outside the lines, but I realize the limits of diagrams.
    Dan

    • Dr. Dan, thanks for the encouragement. I hope and pray the these diagrams will be useful for the kingdom. I’m still thinking through how best to fine tune them in light of our discussion but I have a question to ask you; Are you suggesting that Christian Theism is the only theistic belief that is not monistic? Or to put it differently and more specifically, is the Jewish and Islamic worldview Monistic?

  4. Cameron,
    Precisely, only biblical/covenantal theism. The Jewish worldview has become mostly monistic over time, and the Islamic one is based on monism. Most Jews have become either naturalists or kabbalistic (or similar) which is pantheistic. Islam has its roots in Arabic animism (monistic), and then was influenced by Hellenistic philosophy and so became a kind of scientific monism with revival movements Shi’a and Sufism which are pantheistic. I’m consulting on a book on worldview assumptions. We’ve had several scholars, Jewish, former Muslim and Christian confirm this.
    Dan

    • Dan,

      Thanks for the clarification. If that is the case then it sounds like the Christian Theism diagram is the one that needs changing as you originally suggested.

      I am interested to know what the book is you are consulting on.

      Thanks

      Cameron

  5. Pingback: Web curations (15 Mar) « ChongsWorship.com

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