See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit, which are in accord with human tradition, namely, the basic principles of the world, but not in accord with Christ. For all the fullness of God’s being dwells bodily in Christ. And you have been brought to fullness in him. (Colossians 2:8-10 – EHV)
There are many differing philosophies in the world today—all of them are filled with empty deceit. Take evolution, for example. We know evolution as a scientific theory. And you are probably well aware that evolution is incompatible with the Scriptures since it denies (among other things) the existence of God (thus no Christ, and no Savior), objective morality (there is no such thing as sin), the soul, life after death, etc.
If that doesn’t make evolution dangerous enough, evolution leads to a completely different perspective on life. While not a philosophy in and of itself, faith in evolution does push one toward a worldview that is not compatible with Scripture—whether it be materialism or secular humanism, which are both attached to and connected with evolution.
If there is no such thing as God, if there is not such thing as a soul, and if there is no such thing as sin and an eternal punishment for sin—then what is left? Man and nature—that is about it. Man exists as the center of the universe. This often leads to a sort of life that is only concerned for me and me alone. “If this life is all there is, then I better have a good time while I’m here! I’m going to look out for me and mine and do all I can to get what I want when I want it.” Others see the purpose in life as finding wonder and awe in the joys and beauties of the human existence (which means something different to different people). More responsible evolutionists see their job as making the world a better place to live in—taking care of the environment, making medical advancement, scientific discoveries, etc. All of which God uses to the benefit of his creation.
But do you realize what is missing? God. He is completely out of the picture. There is nothing about the Lord as the creator and preserver of this world. There is no thought of living our lives to give him glory by living according to his commands. The study of his Word, salvation by grace through faith, the spread of his gospel, eternal life with him in heaven forever, and striving to do our best with the gifts that God has given us, are obviously not part of the picture when it comes to false worldviews. We may think that the unbelieving world and Christianity are close in many things, but in reality we are worlds apart!
We, as Christians, are not evolutionists, and yet we come across such worldviews on a regular basis. It’s the predominate worldview taught in our public schools, it saturates entertainment and social media, it is the driving force behind many of the companies you work for. It is hard not to let such views on life seep into your way of thinking—it often affects the way we look at most things in this world.
So what is the answer to such empty and deceiving philosophies? Christ! Through faith we have been brought to fullness in him; in whom dwells the fullness of God’s being (in other words, Jesus is fully God). And through faith in him we are made his own dear children, adopted by him as his heirs of salvation. The one who created the world and sustains it, is the same one who gave up his life to save it! We stand forgiven before the Lord and will live with him in heaven forever.
Because we are his children, we strive to thank and praise him by living our lives according to his Word: by glorifying him with our words and songs, studying his Word, by letting our light shine before men, by sharing his Word with others, and so on. This worldview is not empty or deceptive, but true and full, just as we have been brought to fullness in Christ.
Pastor Andrew Frey
Summer Sunday Bible Study
This Sunday will be our last Summer Family Bible Study. The study is entitled, “The ABC’s of Worship — Lutheran Customs and Practices.” We pray that you will join us this Sunday around 9:15. If you would like one of the study booklets, please talk to one of the Pastors
Our church picnic is this Sunday, August 18 at Plamann Park after our second worship service (eating around noon). Plan to join us for food, fun and fellowship. There will be games for the kids and adults. Please sign up on the sheet in the back of church and plan on joining us for an afternoon of fun and fellowship.
Every two years, our Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) meets in convention to see the many blessings God has granted our synod, but also to plan the ministry for the next two years. Once again, we have seen that God's goodness abounds and that he has blessed our synod very generously -- both spiritually and physically. You can click on the link for an update of some of the major items discussed at this year's convention.