What is a worldview?
According to Dr. Jeff Myers, a worldview is “a pattern of ideas, beliefs, convictions, and habits that help us make sense of God, the world, and our relationship to God and the world.”
There are hundreds of worldviews in operation in the world today. At Summit, we study the worldviews of people because it helps us to understand what they believe and, more importantly, why they believe what they believe. This gives us insight into how we can have conversations with them about the Christian worldview.
Why Does Worldview Matter?
Worldview matters because it is the lens through which people see the world. Your worldview is an invisible, but very real, filter that you use to understand why things are the way they are. Understanding your own worldview is just as important as understanding the worldviews of the people around you.
What are My Assumptions?
We all make assumptions about things we don’t fully understand. We assume people’s intentions and motivations. All of these assumptions come from our worldview or our understanding of other people’s worldviews.
What are the Big Stories?
We all tell stories about the world that explain why things are the way they are. These big stories (also known as meta-narratives) are at the heart of our worldview. The characters and narrative flow of these big stories shape the way we think and act—they’re a huge part of our worldview.
How Do I Navigate the World?
Another reason worldview matters is because it is what helps us to navigate everyday life. The way we interact with each other, the decisions we make, and the values we hold all flow from our worldview.
Understanding the Christian Worldview
More than 2 billion people in the world claim to be Christians, nearly a third of the world’s population. What they mean by “Christian,” of course, varies widely—some people claim to hold a Christian worldview because their parents were Christian or because they live in a predominantly Christian country.
Still, no one doubts that Christianity is a dominant influence in the world. The Christian worldview is built on the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Messiah prophesied for centuries among the Israelites in the Jewish Scriptures. Christians believe that God has revealed himself in the Bible as well as in nature, but especially in the person of Jesus Christ. Because Jesus Christ was God incarnated as a human being, his life is the center of the human story.
We Were Created by God
One of the first things to know about the Christian worldview is that it states that we were created by God. We were made in His image, to bear His likeness in the world. This is a fundamental aspect of this worldview.
We Have Forgotten Who We Are
In the Christian worldview, it is clear that there are gaps between the way God made us and the world and the way things currently are. One of those gaps is between how we were created to live and how we actually live. Our worldview says that, in some ways, we have forgotten who we are and therefore need to be brought back to the relationship we were created for—a relationship with God.
Jesus Came to Bring Us Back
Jesus came into the world to bring us back to God—back to His way of living and back to His way of relating. This is foundational to our worldview. Jesus is the only way for us to get back to the life we were created to live. He showed us what it means to live from this worldview and made the way for each of us to step into this different kind of life.
Inviting Others to See How We See
A big part of the Christian worldview involves inviting others to see the world in the way we see it. It involves helping others to see, the best we can, that God created them and wants them to live in a relationship with Him. That worldview has changed billions of people’s lives throughout the centuries and that worldview is still changing lives today.
For more information about Christian worldview, visit the free resources section of our website.
Researchers have cited that only a minority of believers possess a proper biblical worldview. And the faithful would be well advised to know the precepts of the other five major worldviews at odds with Christianity. This is the breakdown that Dr. Jeff Myers explains in his book The Secret Battle of Ideas about God.
- Secularism. Life is about control. We can use our intelligence to harness evolution and make life turn out the way we want. Secularists don’t ask what God wants or what history requires of us but instead what we think best serves us during our lifetimes.
- Marxism. Life is about capital. Marxism demands a forcible overthrow of all existing social structures: government, the economy, religion, and family.
- Postmodernism. Life is about context. “Capital T” truth cannot be known to exist; we create only “lowercase t” truths for ourselves. We need to be “post”-modern, this worldview argues, investing our time uncovering the ways religious and scientific people try to trick us into thinking they’re right.
- New Spirituality. Life is about consciousness. With new spirituality, higher consciousness is at the core of reality, a force some people call “god.” Spirituality isn’t just a thing; it is the only thing.
- Islam. Life is about conquering. A sixth-century nomad named Muhammad claimed that an angel revealed humanity’s need to unite around sincere worship of one God: Allah, in Arabic. Considering itself to be the one true religion, Islam teaches that we all are born Muslim (“those who submit”). Disbelief must be conquered through jihad
For more resources on understanding worldviews and their effects on the way we live out our faith, download this eBook
Who is Summit Ministries?
Summit Ministries exists to cultivate rising generations to resolutely champion a biblical worldview. We accomplish this in several ways.
Developing Free Worldview Resources
Hosting Student Conferences
Providing Curriculum for both Christian Schools and Homeschoolers
Developing Free Worldview Resources
We have a huge archive of worldview resources in the form of videos and articles. These are all developed from the standpoint of apologetics—providing a defense for the Christian faith and a biblical worldview.
Hosting Student Conferences
Every summer, hundreds of students attend one of our Student Conferences in Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. During these conferences, students hear from some of the foremost minds in Christianity, as they learn to defend their faith and prepare for college. The result is hundreds of students who have taken ownership of their faith and know why they believe what they believe.
Providing Christian School and Homeschool Curriculum
Another way we encourage rising generations to stand strong in a biblical worldview is through providing bible curriculum for Christian Schools and Homeschools. Thousands of kids are using these tools to understand their faith (at an age-appropriate level) and then be ready with a defense of why they believe what they believe. The study of apologetics can begin at a young age, even though it will look differently than it does later on in life.
The Focus of Summit Ministries
We are focused on helping people approach and understand life from a Christian, biblical worldview. In our culture today, there are many competing worldviews that offer an explanation for the big questions in life. Through the study and application of apologetics, we provide a solid foundation for people to feel confident in a biblical worldview.
What Areas Does Summit Ministries study?
Answers for the biggest questions in life are being offered all around us. How do we sort through this barrage of assumptions and assertions? We have identified ten areas where the biblical worldview can guide our thinking and our behavior. These areas are woven into our homeschool curriculum right from the start, in ways that are age-appropriate.
These 10 areas provide a comprehensive worldview that is based on biblical principles. Through the consistent application of apologetics to these 10 topics, we teach people how to defend their faith with confidence.
The History of Summit Ministries
An alarming number of Christians stumble while in college and around half will renounce their faith because they simply do not have a defense for what they believe. David Noebel, our founder and former president, almost joined those statistics while he was a philosophy student at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Dr. Noebel founded Summit Ministries in 1962 to help ground Christians in their faith, thereby enabling them to face the barrage of challenges on college campuses.
Our home is a turn-of- the-century hotel (formerly known as The Grandview), luxurious by early 20th century standards. Around this hotel, we have built our home in a complex of buildings dubbed the Summit Village. This, our home base, is located in Manitou Springs, CO at the foot of Pike’s Peak.
From 1962 until 1988, we were a small series of camp-style conferences, hosting an average of 350 students each year. After sending his own son Ryan through our program, Dr. James Dobson featured Summit Ministries on the Focus on the Family radio program in 1989, which quickly grew our attendance exponentially.
Today, with our world-renowned faculty and under the direction of President Dr. Jeff Myers, we are viewed as one of the foremost leaders in training Christians in apologetics, worldview analysis, and social engagement.