In my last few posts I have outlined what amount to the foundational points of the Christian worldview.
- The inerrancy and authority of Scripture.
- The nature of God.
- The fact and historicity of Divine Creation.
- The origin and nature of humanity.
These four points are essentially the first four points that are necessary for every worldview. Every worldview must have a source of authority, a position on the existence and nature of God (or, as the case may be, the non-existence of God), an explanation of how the universe came into being, and an explanation of the origin and nature of man. Again, it is not my purpose to give my attention to the world’s many worldviews at this point. My point is to explain the Christian worldview.
Before I begin to elaborate on the narrative structure of the Christian worldview, there is one more issue that I think needs to be addressed: angels. I have personally found the study of angels to be fertile soil for theological reflection. Specifically, I see in Scripture a juxtaposition between humanity and the angels. There are many similarities between human beings and angels, but there are a great many differences as well, and it is the differences that I find most intriguing. Please note that I am painting in broad strokes. Wayne Grudem, in his Systematic Theology delves into much more specificity on this topic than I will here.
First, some similarities:
- Angels, like humans, are created beings. (Colossians 1:16, John 1:3, Nehemiah 9:6)
- Angels, like humans, are persons. They possess intellect, emotion, and volition, and are capable moral action and choice. (II Peter 2:4)
- Angels are able to worship God. (Isaiah 6)
- Angels are able to sin. (II Peter 2:4 – again)
Now for some differences:
- Nowhere does Scripture indicate that angels are made in the image and likeness of God. (This will be crucial to remember as we proceed.)
- Angels, while they may take on human form at times (Genesis 19), are non-corporeal from their creation (Hebrews 1:7)
- Angels do not procreate. They were created simultaneously, and their number is, therefore, fixed. (Matthew 22:30)
The obvious question now is, “Why does this matter?” I spoke in another post about the fact that there is a spiritual aspect to the problem of evil, but I did not explain what that aspect is. It has to do with the differences between angels and human beings. In short is has to do with Satan, the enemy of our souls, the proprietor of all evil. What exactly happened in the beginning when Satan sinned, and when he tempted the parents of the human race to sin as well? I hope to cover this in the next few posts.