Book Review: What’s Your Worldview? An Interactive Approach To Life’s Big Questions

               Dr. James N. Anderson has written what is probably one of my favourite introductory-level apologetics books. What’s Your Worldview: An Interactive Approach to Life’s Big Questions is a novel and creative approach to Christian apologetics to the layperson. The premise is simple but profound—what would happen if you combined a ‘choose-your-own-adventure’ book with an introductory apologetic book? Well, this book is what you would get—and it’s brilliant! Dr. Anderson is the Associate Professor of Theology and Philosophy at Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte and is a gifted writer and Christian Philosopher/Theologian.

               Christian apologetics is simply the study of how to give a logical and consistent defence of the faith—a reasoned response to critical questions and challenges. The word apologetics comes from a Greek word meaning “a reasoned response” and is taken from 1 Peter 3:15-16 which is popularly used as the biblical mandate toward Christian apologetics. What’s Your Worldview starts off with a brief introduction which explains the basic premise of the book and also defines what is a worldview. Anderson states that, “A worldview is an all-encompassing perspective on everything that exists and matters to us.”[1] Most people are not aware they have a worldview since we’re usually not consciously aware of it and its significance. However, worldviews frame and determine much of how we interact with and understand our world—they are the lenses through which we view the world. Therefore, “worldviews play a central and defining role in our lives. They shape what we believe and what we’re willing to believe, how we interpret our experiences, how we behave in response to those experiences, and how we relate to others.”[2]

               The book starts off moving from questions to determine our foundational beliefs, progressing to increasingly more detailed questions which narrow down which worldview the reader holds. Each page contains a brief background and clarification of the concept in question, then a yes or no question at the bottom of the page with instructions of which page to go to depending on your response. Through these sequences of questions, Anderson guides you step-by-step to understand your own underlying beliefs (which you may not have ever consciously contemplated) to figuring out what your held worldview is. Once the reader has reached the end of the trail at their worldview, Anderson provides a brief apologetic explaining the logical implications of that worldview and the problems it may pose. The reader then can choose to backtrack and choose a different path to continue reading on, or put the book down. However, Anderson’s clarity, wit and winsome writing are compelling to entice even the critical reader to want to continue on.

               Anderson tackles topics such as relative versus objective truth, the ‘God’ question, epistemology (how we know what we know), the nature of God, Divine revelation and salvation in the first part of his book. The second part starts to respond to the various broad categories of worldviews which the reader would have ended up at depending on their responses. These include Atheist, Theist, Quasi-Theist, Finite Theist, and Non-Christian Theist worldviews. The third part of the book addresses specific worldviews such as (but not limited to) Atheistic Dualism, Deism, Islam, Monism, Judaism, Nihilism, Pantheism, Pelagianism, Relativism, Unitarianism and of course, Christianity.

               Anderson’s book challenges readers to identify their own worldviews, and in so doing, helps them come to logical conclusions and implications of their held beliefs in an innovative way. I’d definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in apologetics, or even to those with absolutely no idea what it is! It is easy to read, at only 103 pages (including the Appendix), and would be a great resource to read and give away to a friend or family member who is searching or trying to understand the big questions of life. This could also be a great evangelism tool to use in conjunction with Gospel conversations you’d want to have with people to whom you’re reaching out. I really hope that this book gains popularity! Go get a copy or two or ten!

You can find What’s Your Worldview at Amazon or Christianbook or most other major booksellers.


 

ENDNOTES
[1] Anderson, What’s Your Worldview, 12.
[2] Anderson, What’s Your Worldview, 13.

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ExeGreeksis: “Multitudes Fed and a Watery Stroll” – Matthew 14:13-33

This is a continuation of my ΕχεGrεεκsις series in the Gospel of Matthew. You can download the PDF for this article here: ΕχεGrεεκsις – Multitudes Fed and a Watery Stroll (Matt 14.13-33) and you can read the previous article in the series “3 Unusual Healings – Matthew 7” here.

In the below commentary, I have put the Greek text followed by my translation into English. I make textual and translational notes and then add my comments on the passage below. Continue reading ExeGreeksis: “Multitudes Fed and a Watery Stroll” – Matthew 14:13-33

An Exegetical Commentary on Revelation 13

You can download the PDF version of this article here: An Exegetical Commentary on Revelation 13

Revelation 13 sparks considerable disagreement between various expositors as to its significance. The influence of apocalyptic fictions such as the Left Behind series, which were based more on fanciful imagination than sound exegesis, has so affected evangelicalism that it is no wonder there is such wide-spread confusion and fear about Revelation.[1] However, in the midst of all the bizarre imagery of multi-horned beasts and dragons there still remains a timeless message for the church today. As such, any interpretation worth its weight must be faithful to the intended meaning of the author to his audience, but also have timeless application to the Church throughout history. Continue reading An Exegetical Commentary on Revelation 13

BOOK REVIEW: Presuppositional Apologetics – Stated and Defended

If you’d like, you can download the PDF of this article here: Greg Bahnsen – Presuppositional Apologetics Stated and Defended

About Greg Bahnsen

Greg L. Bahnsen became interested in apologetics by reading the writings of Cornelius Van Til in high school and would go on to develop his presuppositional apologetic. He was exceptionally gifted intellectually and graduated magna cum laude with his B.A. in philosophy and winning the John Bunyan Smith award for his grades. He simultaneously earned two degrees at Westminster Theological Seminary (WTS), a Master of Divinity and Master of Theology, as well as prizes in apologetics before moving on to University of Southern California (USC) to earn his PhD in Philosophy, specializing in the theory of knowledge.[1] He served as an ordained minister in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, was the associate professor of Apologetics and Ethics at Reformed Theological Seminary (RTS) and scholar in residence at The Southern California Center for Christian Studies. He suffered with lifelong medical problems and died at the early age of forty-seven due to complications after heart surgery on December 11, 1995.[2] Continue reading BOOK REVIEW: Presuppositional Apologetics – Stated and Defended

A Critical Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 21

You can download and read the PDF version of this article here: A Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 21

My translation is given in bold first, followed by the Greek text then followed by parsing and grammar notes. For this text I’ve chosen to colour code the verbal aspects (only available in PDF version) to see if there is any discernable pattern in the text. Also, imperative and subjective moods will be highlighted (see parsing key in PDF). Other textual and lexical notes will be included and footnoted, as well as comments and observations. The final smoothed translation will be included at the end. Continue reading A Critical Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 21

A Critical Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 13

If you would like, you can download and read the PDF version of this article here: A Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 13

This article is more of a technical one, so I don’t expect everyone to be interested in it. But if you’re a Greek geek like me, or you just have a casual curiosity about New Testament translation, I hope it would be informative and enjoyable to you! It is a critical translation paper on Revelation chapter 4. In it, I try to take into account textual variants within the Greek manuscripts, lexical meanings and semantic ranges of words and phrases, syntax and grammar to produce a translation which would be faithful to the underlying Greek text. My translation is given in bold first, followed by the Greek text then followed by parsing and grammar notes. The PDF version of this article has some other highlighting and noting of verbal aspect and other Greek grammatical items. Other textual and lexical notes will be included and footnoted, as well as comments and observations. The final smoothed translation will be included at the end. Continue reading A Critical Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 13

A Critical Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 4

If you’d prefer, you can read this article as a PDF here: A Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 4

This article is more of a technical one, so I don’t expect everyone to be interested in it. But if you’re a Greek geek like me, or you just have a casual curiosity about New Testament translation, I hope it would be informative and enjoyable to you! It is a critical translation paper on Revelation chapter 4. In it, I try to take into account textual variants within the Greek manuscripts, lexical meanings and semantic ranges of words and phrases, syntax and grammar to produce a translation which would be faithful to the underlying Greek text. My translation is given in bold first, followed by the Greek text then followed by verbal parsing and grammar notes. Other textual and lexical notes will be included and footnoted, as well as comments and observations. The final smoothed translation will be included at the end. Continue reading A Critical Translation of the Greek Text of Revelation 4

Cornelius Van Til: The Grandfather of Presuppositional Apologetics

You can download this article as a PDF (with photos) here: Cornelius Van Til – The Grandfather of Presuppositional Apologetics

Christian apologetics (the reasoned defense of our faith) can seem like a daunting and complicated task. There are so many arguments, methodologies and facts to master—it is enough to drive many to frustration and giving up on it altogether. But what if instead of memorizing multiple arguments and facts you could find one argument that would be the argument to end all arguments? Perhaps it is too good to be true, but this is part of the intrigue of the apologetic method of Cornelius Van Til. While he did not create the ‘apologetic silver bullet,’ his approach basically boils down to this,

“The theistic proofs therefore reduce to one proof, the proof which argues that unless this God, the God of the Bible, the ultimate being, the Creator, the controller of the universe, be presupposed as the foundation of human experience, this experience operates in a void. This one proof is absolutely convincing.”[1]

Continue reading Cornelius Van Til: The Grandfather of Presuppositional Apologetics

Book Review: Crazy Busy – A mercifully short review of a mercifully short book

You can download the PDF for this article here: book-review-crazy-busy-a-mercifully-short-review

Are you crazy busy? Stressed out? Do you find yourself always replying with the same almost automated response when people ask how are you? “I’m busy, but good.” As much as I try to avoid it—I am. I know that feeling all too well. We tell ourselves it’s just for a season, but seasons have a tendency to flow one into the other and we find ourselves at the end of a chain of them wondering how did I let it go this far, am I going to burn out, and is there hope for change? There is much to be said for productivity, and the rightness of speaking against the lethargy and laziness of a culture that tends to occupy itself with trivial pursuits and lacks a sense of urgency. This much is true. However, there is the other end of the spectrum. The end of sore necks, knotted shoulders and the feeling that you have invisible sleeves of lead weighing you down (it shows in your posture!). Kevin DeYoung’s book, Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem is for you.[1] This review is perhaps for you too—to hopefully convince you that you need to hear this. How ironic would it be if you’re too busy to even read the review about a book about being too busy? As such—this will be a mercifully short one (as is the book). Continue reading Book Review: Crazy Busy – A mercifully short review of a mercifully short book

‘HYMN’ WE PROCLAIM: Colossians and Preaching

You can download and read the PDF of this article here: hymn-we-proclaim-colossians-and-preaching

               The letter of Paul to the Colossians has long been held as the Everest of Christology in the New Testament. Not many other peaks come close to the summit found in the Christ Hymn of 1:15-20.[1] Many Christians through the centuries have found delight in Paul’s high exaltation of the risen Christ and His ultimate supremacy in all things. However, some may miss the forest among the trees. Aside from merely looking at the content of Colossians, how does Paul use these threads as parts of the tapestry as a whole? What about Paul’s manner and method of Gospel proclamation in Colossians can preachers today learn from? This essay will begin to explore these questions. Time and space don’t allow for a full exploration, but I hope that these few points would be helpful stimulus. Also, we will consider the attitude and posture of the writer—Paul—and thus by extension, us as preachers after Paul’s example. Lastly, we will consider how we can employ Paul’s methodology to our own preaching. To end off, I will include 4 sermon outlines I wrote from Colossians from my studies. Continue reading ‘HYMN’ WE PROCLAIM: Colossians and Preaching