Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

Lots of folks are talking about the current Vanity Fair story on the Creation Museum in KY.  I’ll let someone else start a chat about the story in particular or the museum (follow the Scott Lamb link below for one such discussion); I wish to deal with something more general and foundational.

Check out this quotation from the Vanity Fair story (heads up: if you follow the link, remember the nature of VF’s photography): 

“This place doesn’t just take on evolution—it squares off with geology, anthropology, paleontology, history, chemistry, astronomy, zoology, biology, and good taste. It directly and boldly contradicts most -onomies and all -ologies, including most theology.”

(h-tip: Scott Lamb , who notes that the VF story seems surprised by this wide-ranging engagement on the part of the museum.)

Now compare that with this quotation from Abraham Kuyper:

“In the total expanse of human life there is not a single square inch of which the Christ, who alone is sovereign, does not declare, “That is mine.”

These two statements distill the essential difference between a secularist worldview and a Christian one.

A Christian worldview is relentlessly unified, viewing knowledge itself as pointing to an ultimate unity.  Christ is Lord over all (Acts 10:36 & Phil. 2:10-12).  He is reconciling all things (2 Cor. 5:19).  We are called to take captive every thought to Christ (2 Cor. 10:5).  Indeed, the hermeneutical key to the entire universe is God’s self-revelation of Himself.

A secularist worldview is hopelessly fractured.  Each academic discipline is a silo.  Each perspective on the world, no matter how contradictory, is equally valid; there are no “priorities.”  Each opinion is entitled to a seat at the table of ideas (except, of course, for any opinion that dares to point out the logical inconsistencies of the other opinions).  There can be no meaningful interpretive key for knowledge because there is only disintegration and brokenness among the various stakeholders.

Once we understand these radical differences, we can see how high the stakes of the conversation really are, and how far-reaching, whether in cultural issues or theological disputes.

Comments are visible to subscribers only. Log in or subscribe to join the conversation.



Filter First Thoughts Posts

Related Articles