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Naming the Lenses: Part 1

Posted by Wilcox on 12/23/2013 to Critical Thinking
This entire series of articles on worldviews must be credited to James Sire. His book, The Universe Next Door, is the best work we have ever found to summarize the main worldviews recognized in our world today. Using a series of eight questions, similar to the seven questions posed in the previous article (“Focusing Lenses”), Sire clearly distinguishes and compares each of the nine major worldviews evident in society. His answers are much more detailed and expansive than the brief summaries that follow will convey, so please consider reading The Universe Next Door on your own to get a more comprehensive discussion of these worldviews.

Focusing Lenses: What Is a Worldview?

Posted by Wilcox on 12/16/2013 to Critical Thinking
In his work, How to Read Slowly, James Sire describes a worldview as a map of reality upon which we act. Another author, Boris Uspensky, defines a worldview as “the framework of beliefs, expressive symbols, and values in terms of which individuals define their world, express their feelings, and make their judgments” (Quoted by David Noebel, The Battle for Truth, pp.) It encompasses ideologies, philosophies, theologies, movements, and religions that provide an “over-arching approach to understanding God, the world, and man’s relations to God and the world” (Noebel, The Battle for Truth, pp.)

The God of Music

Posted by Wilcox on 12/9/2013 to Homeschooling
Our God is a God of music…and music appreciation. He ordained Jubal, one of Cain’s great-great-great-great-grandsons, to be the “father of all those who play the harp and flute” (Gen. 4:21). God gifted Moses, David, Asaph, and others to write psalms and music for His glory and our edification. Zephaniah proclaims our God is a singing God (Zeph. 3:17). And we know Jesus sang with His disciples at the Passover feast before going out to the Mount of Olives (Matt. 26:30). Bible scholar Warren Wiersbie points out that Jesus also sang after His triumphant resurrection from the dead (Ps. 22:22 and Heb. 2:12). Moreover, today the Holy Spirit sings through the hearts and lips of believers who praise God (Eph. 5:18-21).

The Importance of Worldview

Posted by Wilcox on 12/9/2013 to Critical Thinking

It seems obvious, but we need to be aware of the worldview(s) being presented in any work, and we need to instruct our children how to recognize how those worldviews are being used to influence our responses to a film. Leland Ryken, an English professor at Wheaton College, proposes in Windows to the World (104-105) that media can easily persuade an assuming or inattentive viewer or a reader to:

  • Accept an erroneous viewpoint as truth.
  • Move a person to detrimental emotions (hopelessness, despair, hatred, etc.).
  • And influence a person to immoral behavior.

Are You a Movie Abstainer or Movie Glutton?

Posted by Wilcox on 12/6/2013 to Critical Thinking
We, as movie goers or movie viewers, must use discernment and discretion when determining what to view. Our main goal is to honor God in all we do, according to 1 Corinthians 6:20 and Colossians 3:23. Some individuals, then, would argue that avoiding movies altogether would be the most honorable thing to do. This is a fine line to walk, however. People who avoid going to the movies or watching films because they want to remain pure from Hollywood’s decadence and indecency can become “cultural abstainers” who may seem alienated from or unapproachable to others.
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