This is a general and tentative walk through the expectations of this course. This course is a web-based interaction that will allow for some unique challenges and some unique dynamics. We will have more information coming to solidify the syllabus.
This course guides the student in understanding the major religious worldviews and how Christianity compares to those worldviews. This course additionally guides the student in understanding evangelism with a unique aim at making The Case for Christ in the marketplaces of the world. There are several major areas of study:
- Survey of core beliefs of some of the major World Religions;
- Consideration of differences and similarities between Christianity and other religious worldviews;
- Examine the ways that other religions justify their worldview;
- Develop a test to evaluate the strength of worldviews
- Develop a strategy for dialoguing with non-Christians about religious ideas and the strengths and weakness of their worldview.
MBS565 is designed to develop an understanding of world religions and the worldview characteristics that define these groups. Understanding the world as people see it allows for better navigation of The Gospel of Christ into the hearts and lives of the community. Such an understanding intimates the need to explain the dynamic significance of The Great Commission and how to accomplish it best. To this end, one ought to see the incorporation of evangelism in the study of religious worldviews to achieve the requisites of Christ.
Fundamentally, there must be a reason for the engagement of the values of one the Christian worldview amidst others. This course will argue the supremacy of the Christian worldview with an aim at understanding the weakness of others. Barna says in a survey in 2009 that, “Only nine percent of born-again Christians hold a biblical worldview.” He further states that “most Americans have little idea how to integrate core biblical principles to form a unified and meaningful response to the challenges and opportunity of life.” This statistic is both alarming and foundational for the need to prepare and develop as leaders for the kingdom agenda.
What is a worldview? In his book A World of Difference, Kenneth Sample writes, “derived from the German term weltanschauung; the word worldview refers to the cluster of beliefs a person holds about the most significant issues of life such as God, the cosmos, knowledge, values, humanity, and history.” Norman Giesler describes a worldview as, “an interpretive framework through which or by which one makes sense out of the data of life and the world.” Michael Palmers explains the function as follows: “Through our worldview, we determine priorities, explain our relationship to God and fellow human beings, assess the meaning of events and justify our actions.” A person’s worldview supplies a general context for life, providing a vision of what one considers authentically real.
This reality is what disciples are called to examine. We are ever challenged to humbly and lovingly be ready to answer for the hope of the Christian worldview in the marketplace of the religious world.