What’s Shaping Your World View
9/3/2017 Psalm 1:1-6 Mark 7:20-23
If I told you, because the Cleveland Browns were undefeated the last three games so they will most likely win the Super bowl, what would your reaction be? Anybody thinking, wow that’s good to hear we have a great team? Anybody thinking that would be nice, but I’m not counting on it. Anybody thinking, you have really lost your mind if you believe that? How you see the Browns is based on the information you know about the Browns.
Somebody told you something about them, or you heard something about them, or you know what other teams are in the league, or you saw them on tv, or you know what their record was last year, you saw them play. You put all that information together in a few seconds and decided whether or not I knew what I was talking about. You had a view of the Browns.
All of us have view about life and about people. It is called a world view. How is it that you see the world? How is it that you see life?
All of us have a world view about people and how they should or should not behave. Our world view is built upon our beliefs about four things. 1) Where did I come from ( My origin)? 2) How do I separate good and bad? (My morality) 3. What’s my life’s meaning (my purpose)? 4. What’s going to happen to me when I die. (my Destiny)? (From Ravi Ministries) Now don’t think for a moment that we come up with these answers by ourselves. We get our world view from the things we see, hear, feel, taste, and experience. Our world view is going to affect how we treat other people.
For example if you believe you are just a random product of nature and that you evolved from an ape and it all happened by chance, then you see everybody else is just an accident of colliding molecules walking around. There is nothing special about any of us. If you believe that there is no God or at least there is no God that is involved in our lives, then you are free to decide for yourself what is good and what is bad. Not only that but you are free to choose to change those things depending on the circumstances. 3. If the purpose of your life is to be happy as you can without hurting others that sounds good, but you will have to define what you mean by hurting others. 4. If you believe when you die you will either go into nothingness or you go to heaven you think there is are no consequences for your choices in life, therefore whatever you did not get caught doing, you got away with it.
Some of you may be thinking, now I agree with that and that’s my world view. Let’s try this world view on the drug dealer. He has a product to sell. His view is, “if you want it, I’m willing to sell it.” He does not look at you as a person of value. You are a random potential customer. He decides it’s not the selling of the drug that is bad. Selling is good because we sell things all the time. The drug itself is not even bad, it is how you use the drug that makes it bad.
His purpose in life is to be happy while not hurting anyone. He is very happy with the money he receives and when you left him you looked quite happy as well especially when he gave you the $10 discount. He believes when he dies he is either going to disappear into nothing like before he was born or he will go to heaven to be with his other friends who also provided a service. There’s no punishment awaiting his actions.
Is what this drug dealer doing okay? Why or why not. You are trying to force this drug dealer to live up to some standard of morality from somewhere. You know that something does not feel right about this. Here’s your problem. You know there are some bad consequences down the road that are going to come from his actions. Some of the consequences are waiting for him, and some of the consequences are waiting for others.
Now here is the funny thing. That drug dealer believes there is a law outside of himself that should govern his behavior. Because if you say, “what you’re doing is wrong”, do you know what his response will be? It is wrong for you to be judging me? He is saying, “there is a law out there that says, we can’t judge each other’s actions and you are breaking that law.” If you apologize and say, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to make you feel I was judging you, then you have agreed with him, that there is a law outside of you both, that both of you should be following. Where is that law located?
Your world view is determined by the people you hang around with, and what you think about the nature of people. How many of you think people are basically good and once you tell them the right thing to do, they will start doing it. Those of you who are parents, how many times have you said, “How many times do I have to tell you that before you listen to what I say.” Those of you with younger brothers and sisters, have you ever said to them, “Stop, I told you before not to do that!” So education does not always lead to a change in behavior. We think if we have people sit down on a class on racism when they leave the class, nobody will be racist anymore. That’s based on the world view that the human heart is basically good and just needs a little education to make it right.
Our society wants to take the words and teachings of Jesus without accepting Jesus’ view of what we are all really like. They say things like Jesus said,” love your neighbor as yourself,” Jesus said, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”, Jesus said “forgive your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” Jesus said these things to show us how far we are from what God requires of us. We try to use Jesus sayings as though there were emergency band aids. How many of you know, it does not help to have the best band aids andtry to put over the skin of the person having a heart attack. Band aids are good for cuts and scrapes, but a heart attack may require some surgery.
Jesus teachings about our relationships to each other is based on a world view that I called God centered. 1) Our origin. We were created by God and created in the image of God. We have intrinsic value simply because we are human beings. In Genesis God says any person or wild animal that takes another person’s life is going to have to give an account of it to God.
This is what makes us all equal regardless of our color, race, ethnicity or culture. This is why you do not have the right to destroy my life whether you are a gang member shooting me with a gun or a rich executive of a chemical plant dumping chemicals in my drinking water.
2) Jesus determined what was right and what was wrong, by what God the Father had revealed about himself in the Holy Scriptures. When Satan was trying to tempt Jesus to do wrong, Jesus appealed back to the Scriptures saying “It is written.” There is a standard of righteousness that does not change based on what is popular with the culture at the moment. Let me ask you something, why are people going crazy over these statutes all of a sudden. Black People and Negroes rejected those statutes when they first went up.
For the next 150 years, we simply said, “that statute does not mean anything to me, and we went on about our business.” They may have put the statutes up to hurt us, but some of us used them as reminders to say that’s why I’m going to be twice as good on the job.
We did not turn those monuments into an idol to worship call racism, because we knew then, idol worship was wrong. I wish people would read the bible. They would tear down idols after each mini revival in the Old Testament, but tearing it down did not get the idol out of the people’s hearts. Within twenty years they would be worshipping the same idol all over again. Don’t tear down the idol, while at the same time keeping city redevelop funds out of my neighborhood or looking at my zip-code to determine if I should get an interview or not. There is a standard or right and wrong and it is not changing.
3) Jesus determined the purpose of life was two fold. He said 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’[a] 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] There is no commandment greater than these.” The world view that is current in our society is completely opposite of this. The person you should love and take care of first is yourself. You owe it to yourself to be true to yourself whatever that means. Then maybe your family. Then maybe God, if God exists. Finally if you can help the needy who didn’t get there by their behavior then do so.
I know we think we are going to have purpose in life if we just get the right career, make the right amount of money, get the right body, own the biggest house, drive the most expensive car, fall in love with the right person, travel to the right places or have a large number of friends on Facebook. If being on top is everything, why do so many of our entertainers get hooked on drugs? Why do we excuse their behavior with drugs.
4) Jesus determined our ultimate destiny would not be in a grave at Lakeview Cemetery or Cleveland Memorial Gardens, or even in a lake or a nice vase in the living room for those of us who want to be cremated. Our ultimate destiny is to spend eternity in either heaven or the lake of fire.
What we do in life does matter, and we will give an account to God for our behavior. Nobody will get away with anything. We will not be able to pretend any longer we can do what we want to do and not have to answer for it. Jesus said, “not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord is going to enter into heaven. Some of them will hear, depart from me, for I never knew you.”
Why is it that our world view is so different from Jesus’ world view? It all starts with what we think about the human heart. If you think people are basically good and just need a few adjustments, you will never accept Jesus as your Lord and savior. You have to agree with Jesus to be saved by Jesus. In John 2:24, Jesus does some miracles and the people are oohin and awing over him. It says many people saw the signs he was performing and believed in his name, but Jesus would not entrust himself to any of them for he knew all people.
He knew what was in each person. Do you really believe Jesus knows what is in your heart? I don’t even think I fully understand everything in my heart. Have you ever had a thought, I mean a terrible thought, and you caught yourself and said, “where on earth did that come from.” That thought may have come from inside you, but that does not mean that is who God created you to be.
The religious leaders were upset with Jesus disciples because they were eating food without having washed their hands. This was not just a regular cleansing for germs, but an elaborate procedure of hands and arms to make sure nothing went inside of them that might be unclean. They thought as long as you kept unclean foods out of you, you were okay as a person. Jesus comes back with, it’s not the food or the washing that’s the problem. It’s what’s on the inside of us that’s causing the trouble.
He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them. 21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.” These are the idols that need to come down, but the only way to slay them is to turn our hearts over to Jesus. Otherwise they come up time and time and time again. Do you know why these things grow in our hearts? It’s because we feed them. We actually give them what they need to keep going. Some of the tv shows and movies, we watch, music we listen to, places that we go and people that we hang with glorify these desires that come out of our hearts.
Are you a center Christian where you try to live as close as you can to Christ because you know what’s in your heart or are you an on the edge Christian where you try to flirt with sin as much as possible on the edge because even though you know what’s in your heart, nothing affects you. How much outside influence does it take to switch our world view from being God-centered to me-centered.
If you were thirsty, and wanted a drink, Suppose I told you, you can have some of this cold lemonade, but after each swallow you have, I am going to add some rat poison to it and stir it up so that you can’t see it before your next swallow, how much rat poison would you be willing to add to the drink before you would no longer drink the lemonade.
God assumes that we want a life of peace without a whole lot of drama all the time. God gives us a measuring rod by which we can determine whether or not something is actually worth our time. If you want the peace that surpasses all understanding then do this. Ask yourself these questions and you can know whether or not God is telling you to go for it. The further our world view is away from Jesus’ the less we will like this verse.
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Our Old Testament reading in Psalms gave us the three steps we all go through in order to feed the evil the desires of our hearts . Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers. We walk upon a situation (see something on the screen, read a facebook post, get called into a conversation), then we stand (we have to take this thing in, we read it, we’re just going to watch this episode to see what it is really about), and then we sit (we set our recorder, we friend this person to get more post, we change our lives around to get more of this, we find ourselves enjoying what God deems to be sin.)
How can this not hurt the flow of the love Jesus wants to give us and the love we want to give to him. How does Jesus feel when we desire to grow closer to Him and He says, okay, we can do that but first we have to deal with this and we give Him the hand. In other words, Jesus keep your mouth closed on that, I’m not going to listen.
Once we get there, we need to recognize we have chosen a different world view. In the Biblical world view, Jesus died that our sins would be forgiven, He rose so that we might give us life, The Holy Spirit convicts our hearts of sin, so that we may grow closer to God. Ask yourself, how close do I want to be to God.. The way you answer that question will determine how you view the world and how you view yourself. That’s your real world view.