In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)….biblical worldview
“In the beginning was the universe/energy/consciousness…” “In the beginning the universe created the universe.” The OTHER worldview…….the pagan worldview.
20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.(Romans 1:20-23)
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2 For by it the people of old received their commendation. 3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. (Hebrews 11:1-3)
“Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.” (Revelation 4:11)
Many people don’t realize that America has experienced a Second Revolution, beginning in the 1960’s. It was similar to the French Revolution it that its goal was to bring radical change to the forms, structures, values, and ethics of the status quo. It had to destroy before ushering in utopia. It is seeking to bring in a New Age with the dawning of the Age of Aquarius. However, the dawn of the New Age is now at its high noon. Though this revolution, in its inception, was relatively bloodless, its consequences have been brutally bloody. 60 million unborn children have died in this ‘enlightened’ age…and this is just the USA. And for the New Age worldview to succeed, Christianity has to be neutralized.
Neo-paganism has led to neo-barbarianism. We stand at the graveside of western civilization and we must weep and wake up! In order to speak the timeless truth of the gospel in a meaningful way in our changing culture, we need to understand what the underlying assumptions or worldview is of those around us.
One of the reasons people seem to talk past each other when debating issues like: earthbound spirits, poltergeists, residual energy, abortion etc. Is that the underlying worldview is rarely addressed. Every person has a worldview which acts like spectacles through which they view all of reality. It affects how we think, how we act, and how we feel.If that is not discussed then we will unlikely persuade people on any deep level.
I want to begin a series which contrasts the two conflicting worldviews of today. Though it may appear reductionistic, this is a simple but accurate way of summarizing the only two worldviews that have existed since the dawn of time.(in my book I mention several worldviews, but they all can be boiled down to two, and just two).
Why is there something rather than nothing? And what is the nature of that something? Where did we come from? Colin Gunyon stated, “There are, probably, ultimately only two possible answers to the question of origins, and they recur at different places in all ages: (either) that the universe is the result of creation by a free personal agency, or that in some way or other it created itself. The two answers are not finally compatible, and require a choice, either between them or an attitude of agnostic refusal to decide.”
I want to gently ask—how can you live with yourself if you have not taken the time to understand why you are here? How can you expect to experience a meaningful life if you don’t care what the meaning of life is—its origin and its explanation?
For the sake of simplicity, Dr Peter Jones says that there are only two ultimate worldview explanations of origins—what he calls Oneism and Twoism. These are two mutually-contradictory ways to think about the world. Let me let Jones explain what these terms mean. I highly recommend this book by Dr Jones, a brilliant scholar who is an astute observer of what is happening in our culture. (see below)
Oneism—“sees the world as self-creating (or perpetually existing) and self-explanatory. Everything is made up of the same stuff, whether matter, spirit, or a mixture. There’s one kind of existence, which, in one way or another, we worship as divine (or of ultimate importance), even if that means worshipping ourselves. Though there is apparent differentiation and even hierarchy, all distinctions are, in principle, eliminated, and everything has the same worth. This is ‘homocosmology’, a worldview based on sameness. The classic term for this is ‘paganism’, worship of nature.” (pg. 12 The Other Worldview, Peter Jones)
In other words, there is ultimately only ONE reality…..creator and creation are compressed. Hence, Oneism. This false worldview takes on many different faces, but the bottom line is the same—ultimately, there is only one kind of ultimate reality.
Twoism—“The only other option is a world that is the free work of a personal, transcendent God, who creates ex nihilo (from nothing). In creating, God was not constrained by or dependent on any pre-existing conditions. There is nothing exactly like this in our human experience of creating; our creative acts are analogous to God’s. There is God, and there is everything that is not God—everything created and sustained by the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. This worldview celebrates otherness, distinctiveness. We only worship as divine the distinct, personal, triune Creator, who placed essential distinctions within creation. This is a ‘heterocosmology’, a worldview based on otherness and difference. This is often called ‘theism’. (pg.13) (Islam and Judaism are deficient attempts at Twoism, but ultimately are Oneist due to lack of Trinity)
In other words, there are ultimately only two kinds of reality—The infinite/personal Creator, and His creation (visible and invisible)…..Twoism
Phrases you may have heard that express Oneism
I’m not religious, but spiritual (this has different meanings but I suggest that Christians not use this verbiage)
Breaking or denying boundaries
Abolishing ‘either/or’ thinking
‘As above, so below’ (no distinction between divine and human)
Oneness—all is one
Enlightenment, chakra, it’s all relative, synchronicity with the Universe, raising energy/consciousness levels, affirming/afforming changes in reality, sending positive thoughts, innate human psychic powers etc, etc.
Whether implicitly or explicitly embraced, these two world views are antithetical….mutually exclusive. One is true and the other is false. In the moral worldview of the bible knowledge is never ‘neutral’. That is why Paul calls one of these worldviews ‘the truth’ and the other worldview ‘the lie’ (Romans 1:25)
Oneism is the lie, and Twoism is the truth.
From the opening line in Genesis to Revelation (see above texts), the bible insists that there are two, and only two, kinds of reality…..the Creator, and everything else…the creation. But paganism merges the two into an idolatrous one.
From time of gestation (mid sixties) to full birth (mid-nineties), a pagan Oneist worldview has virtually overrun and taken over our culture. Pop culture (movies, TV shows, books/novels, spirituality, sexuality, ect.) has been both a cause and symptom of this Oneist juggernaut. For those who are sensitive, the amount of change that has occurred in the last 30 years has been staggering and heart-wrenching—nothing short of a second American Revolution…that has spread worldwide.
Secular humanism and pagan spirituality are both Oneist worldviews. For quite a while secular humanism was the dominant enemy of Christianity, but it is sputtering due to its lack of explanatory power and its consequences (two world wars). Ironically, our culture is not becoming less spiritual, but MORE spiritual…..but this spirituality is from hell. It denies the Creator (see Romans 1:18 ff) and deifies the creation.
We shall look at this in more detail in the coming weeks. But we must ask: is it over? Is it too late? The answer is not a nostalgic return to the 1950’s. We need a generation of spiritual warriors who are valiant for truth and are aware of this worldview shift…to bring the biblical worldview back and pray for revival/reformation.
For now, my main goal was to make folks aware of the two competing worldviews.
Next week we shall look at Carl Jung’s massive contribution to this paradigm shift.
Mark Hunnemann is the author of Seeing Ghosts Through God's Eyes: A Worldview Analysis of Earthbound Spirits. It's also available in eBook format.