What is thinking? Thinking has something to do with producing thoughts and opinions. Multiple thoughts seem necessary to form an opinion. That is, relating different thoughts to each other — organizing them — seems necessary if we want to model the real world using our minds.
With that thought, consider the significance that attends that word, “opinion”. Thinking does not seem to always produce opinions that agree. We all claim to be in grounded in the real world, but we often form radically different opinions.
Recently, a couple of my posts engendered a considerable divergence of opinions.
- MUST WE “PROVE” THE EXISTENCE OF GOD?: The answer no. The Bible says the existence of God is self-evident.
- THE GRAND CONSPIRACY? — PART 4: This post argues that we have created a public education system — that because we have put politicians instead parents in charge of the education of children — we are slowly corrupting our country.
In order to advocate school choice, Scatterwisdom incorporated thoughts from my two posts into one of his own, King Solomon, What is not a Religion? Here Scatterwisdom argued that in order in order prevent taxpayers from being forced to subsidize the education of children in what are clearly objectionable beliefs, we need a definitive legal statement that clearly states what is not a religious belief. Here is what Scatterwisdom proposed as a starting point.
Any entity may not be legally defined as a religion that condones, teaches, or requires a member to engage in any practices to kill or physically harm any living human being to comply with dogma or precept for a deity.
Any beliefs that do not concur with the above requirement will be considered political entities and not religious entities. (from here)
A commenter, tsalmon, apparently thought Scatterwisdom‘s post quite thought provoking. Tsalmon left a comment that reveals a worldview that I think is commonplace, but rarely so well expressed.
Here is my response on Rudy’s blog;
Perhaps religion is like Justice Potter Stewart’s statement about hard core pornography, that it is hard to define, but we know it when we see it.
The whole school debate thing, I find uninteresting. If the goal we agree on is that every American child should be afforded minimum education, then how we get there is of little importance to me. Education has changed dramatically and become far more egalitarian since the 18th Century. Given the increasingly rapid pace of change, one can only assume that education, like every other area of our lives, will continue to change in ways that we may control and in ways that are unpredictable. The only thing that is certain, absent some apocalypse, is that we are unilikely to go back to the family and community model of our 17th Century past. Have you considered the bigger picture? (continued here)
What kind picture does tsalmon paint? Here is my perception. Tsalmon thinks modern society, (The new world order?), has redefined the place of the individual. Instead of being dependent upon our families and connections in our local community, we are each independent individuals, and this independence is supported by a servant government and a consumer driven economy. Unfortunately, the new world order is rapidly advancing, and tsalmon thinks we in the USA are debating the wrong things. So more forward thinking nations, like China, may leave us behind.
What is the Christian worldview? Well, that depends upon which Christian we ask. The Bible tells us what God thinks, that He is the one we should love with all our heart, soul, strength, and mind. Unfortunately, even Christians are not as inclined as we ought be to read the Bible. So we don’t give much thought to God’s preferences, but we should.
Matthew 12:46-50 New King James Version (NKJV)
Jesus’ Mother and Brothers Send for Him
46 While He was still talking to the multitudes, behold, His mother and brothers stood outside, seeking to speak with Him. 47 Then one said to Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, seeking to speak with You.”
48 But He answered and said to the one who told Him, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?” 49 And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! 50 For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.”
In the Christian worldview, family does matter. We do have a special obligation to bring our relatives by blood to the cross of Jesus Christ. Still, it is only those who accept the salvation offered by Jesus that will spend eternity together. As Christians we are the children of God. Therefore, we are family for eternity. The Apostle Paul expressed it this way.
Galatians 3:26-29 New King James Version (NKJV)
Sons and Heirs
26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Instead of turning to the state — to our government — to replace the support the extended family and our local communities once provided us, we need to look to our churches. We need to help each other prepare for eternity.
Consider that government is a secular institution, that corporations are secular institutions. Depending upon government and large corporations for support may satisfy our material needs, but secular institutions will not — cannot — meet our spiritual needs. In fact, because politicians and CEOs seek power and wealth, politicians and CEOs may jeopardize our immortal souls by demanding from us words and deeds God finds abhorrent.
Consider the contest between the state and the “church” in America. Has not our government taken over and secularized education? Doesn’t our mass media, in concert with government, ridicule religious belief with ever greater frequency, especially Christianity?
Why have politicians and media moguls combined to push religious belief into the shadows? Is it because they want to substitute their own influence for the influence that God has upon us? (from here)
Our society is growing increasingly decadent. Unless we the people work together through our churches to insist that our government and corporate leaders practice Christian values, life will slowly become cheap and no one will be free. Religious freedom, because sinners find the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, his death on the cross, offensive, will become a thing of the past. Therefore, if we want to make certain our children and grandchildren have an opportunity to read the Bible, we need to go to church, and we need to support our own church. We each need to work make our own church the centers of a community, a place where both Christians and the lost can turn for both spiritual and material support.