Wednesday, June 19, 2013

All of Life for Christ

The Biblical worldview does not just apply to the 'spiritual realm' but to ALL departments of life. (See the wonderful quotation about this from Kuyper here.) Jesus Himself claimed to have authority over absolutely everything. (Matthew 28:18) All of life is claimed for Christ.

When making this point, namely that we have an obligation to interpret every facet of experience through the lens of the Bible, I have sometimes received a retort that goes something like this: “How can the Biblical worldview apply to all of life when there are many departments that the Bible just never addresses?” 

This question is best answered by sharing an analogy that I got from Ranald Macaulay. Mr. Macaulay was once speaking in a cathedral which didn’t have any electric lights but was lit up by shafts of light coming through the windows. The shafts of light came down in spotlights, directly lighting up certain areas but indirectly lighting up the entire building. He then suggested that Biblical authority functions like that.
The Bible does not address every area of life, just as the shafts of light did not spotlight every inch of the cathedral’s interior. In order to do that the Bible would have to be not only true, but exhaustive. Although the Bible is not exhaustive, what it does do is to spotlight certain areas of life, and in doing so the light of God’s truth diffuses to every other area of life. The areas of life that the Bible does directly address create principles that we can then apply (in wisdom and in conjunction with other principles) to every other area of existence, just as the light coming down in shafts through the windows of the cathedral shed light into other areas not directly covered by those shafts.
While there is no department of life that the Bible does not address, it only directly addresses certain areas. To be a Biblical thinker (or what I sometimes call a “worldview” thinker) means that one will seek to learn how the Bible applies either directly or indirectly to every area of life. This is in contrast both to the error of Biblicism, which erroneously believes that the Bible directly lights up every area of life (for a potent example of this, read my article on Jay Adams), or as well as the error of certain strands of liberalism, which asserts that because the Bible only addresses certain “religious” issues, we are left to make up our own mind on everything else.


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