Athens and Jerusalem are close geographically, but on different planets when it comes to the world views these cities have given the world. Through the Greeks we got secularism, through Jerusalem we got the sacred, both Judaism and Crhristianity. As Christians in the western world, our heads are filled with both worldviews and often we do not realise how often we are subconsciously working with the Greek secular world view. Below are a few differnces between the two to help you think more clearly.
1. The Jerusalem worldview concerns itself with action and function, with doing right and out-working our faith in every day life: Show me what you do and I’ll show you what believe. The Athens worldview is more concerned with creeds, doctrine and philosophy, belief is what we say we adhere to.
2. The Jerusalem worldview sees all of life as an opportunity to worship our father: Eating, working, family relationships, recreation etc are all sacred if our attitude is right. The Athens worldview is dualistic, it seperate so the secular from the sacred. Religion is sacred and does not occupy the everyday spaces of life. It exists in a building on Sunday and does not extend to work on Monday.
3. The Jerusalem worldview is relational, we are in a divine family, we restore natural families, we share and commune with others in an intimate community of believers. We belong to something great. The Athens worldview is individualistic, concerning itself with individual needs and wants…bless me Lord.
4. The Jerusalem worldview engages the heart, soul, mind and body in the quest for truth and redemption. It is a changed lifestyle when in relationship with the father. The Athens worldview elevates the mind above all other faculties. The search for intellectual truth is an end in itself. The focus is on knowing.
The Jerusalem worldview has given the world a profoundly good and rounded understanding of reality, of civil and human rights, of responsibility to the poor and needy, of the dignity of humanity and the rise of trusted commerce, hence capitalism. The Athens worldview has given us intellectual rigor and the elevation of knowledge above relationship. The western world is now in the final stages of exiting the Jerusalem worldview it inherited from the Protestant Reformation. It is now entering a dysfunctional, selfish, intellectual and financial wasteland where the price will be paid for abandoning a wholistic understanding of reality, especially by children.
Please work our your salvation with a Jerusalem worldview!