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June 14, 2021 1:25 pm
This week on Family Policy Matters, host Traci DeVette Griggs sits down with Dr. George Barna, renowned pollster and researcher, to discuss his newest project: the Center for Biblical Worldview. Dr. Barna discusses the importance of ensuring every Christian understands and adopts a Biblical worldview, wherein their faith informs how they think and act in every aspect of their lives.
The family policy matters in engaging and informative weekly radio show and podcast produced by the North Carolina family policy Council hi this is John Ralston, presidency, family, and were grateful to have you with us for this week's program is our prayer that you will be informed, encouraged and inspired by what you hear on family policy matters and that you will fold better equipped to be a voice of persuasion, family values in your community, state and nation, and now here's our house to family policy matters.
Tracy Devitt Griggs thanks for joining us this week for family policy matters were placed to have as our guest today, Dr. George Barnett widely known for his polling and research on the intersection of faith and culture's research has gained a reputation as a highly credible source and has been used as the underpinning for major public policy decisions and even strategies for presidential candidates is a long list of accomplishments including writing over 50 books, the most recent addition to his resume is senior research fellow for the new center of biblical worldview at family research Council, Dr. George Barna.
Welcome to family policy matters most. You've already had a long and successful career you've already started or led several national worldview projects. So why start this new center for biblical worldview at the family research Council worked with family research helpful for number of years on the blood of your projects from my observation are certainly one of the most effective organizations in Washington DC from a Christian perspective or influencing policy, and so to have an opportunity to more directly help people think about how to integrate a biblical worldview into their thoughts about public policy about law about candidates in elections about national values all the kinds of things that FRC is involved in, as well as, of course, family dynamics, it's an opportunity. I couldn't pass up.
Explain what a biblical worldview is and why that's important for people who are Christians worldview is something that everybody has most people don't even realize it, but it essentially obstructs the decision-making filter that we use with speed intellectual, emotional and spiritual filter that helps us to understand and interpret and respond to every reality that we experience that worldview begins developing 15 months of age and is pretty much completely developed by 13 years of age during our teens and 20s.
We tend to refine the supplies articulated, etc. so it's something that develops early and there are many different options of what could go into that worldview because worldview consists of all of your core beliefs and those core beliefs are critical because then they determine your primary behaviors. We have an expression you do what you believe and so beliefs do you make a big difference because they determine how you're going to and so you got all these different worldviews that you can be choosing from postmodernism, secular humanism, Marxist Eastern mysticism and so forth. Probably about a dozen of which Americans commonly draw from the one we want people to be developing and I think the one that honors God. Most would be a biblical worldview, which is simply a way of experiencing interpreting and responding to life in ways that reflect biblical truths and principles so another words what were trying to do is know enough of the Scriptures and how they apply to life so that we can think like Jesus and the reason that we want to think like Jesus is so that ultimately we can act like Jesus. How common are you finding this biblical worldview among Christians. If we look at people who qualified by our questioning as born-again Christians, meaning not that they call themselves that they say that when they die they know that they will go to heaven, but only because they confess their sins and have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior. Even among that group which most of the pastors we've interviewed and say really constitute the backbone of the Christian church in America. Only 19% of those people have a biblical worldview and they are only about 30% of the population overall so you can see we've we've got some work cut out for us to try to expand the number of people who are making their decisions from moment to moment based on biblical principles.
Integrating God's truth into every dimension of life. So why do you suppose that this number is so low even among Christians who have the core lease that we went expect them to. We go back really primarily to two places that are not on the job and to a couple places that have but not knowing what the two that haven't done the job. I would say our families and churches and so when we look at families. What we know from our research is that most parents do not have on their agenda to intentionally and strategically help their children to develop a biblical worldview and so what happens is, therefore, they rely on people outside of the family to do that task now.
Often, they would say well that's probably the job of the church, but the church recognizes the biblical events.
The job of the family so they're not really doing it with children even as we study children's ministries.
What we find is that that biblical worldview development aspect is not on the agenda of churches either.
And so what happens is that vacuum is being filled by worldview development efforts done through the media, in particular, and so is we've looked at what influences Americans to do what they do and think what they think we found a predominantly it's because of media exposure.
And it's because of an understanding of and adherence to the law that people actually develop their worldview and for children. Of course, the other element which is part of the government and political sphere of public schools, prepare them, but we have about 88% of kids attending public schools that we know there that there's a lot of worldview development taking place, whether intentional or not, given the kinds of principles that are being taught in the schools tell us about your strategy how you can attack all this problem.
I think there are three things that need to happen. This is kind of marching orders for me and everything that I do want to educate, motivate and activate people to understand and to do the things that really matter to God. And so the first thing we gotta do here is educate people about what a biblical worldview is whether or not they have one.
If they don't have one hell, they can go about changing that. And then what to do with it once they've got it and so that's part of the process. Here you know initially what were trying to do what we did it through first serving with FRC so we got all of this information now that were trying to get before the public, hopefully igniting their minds to begin thinking about worldview. What is that biblical worldview. I don't know what that is an end. And so, to begin explaining to them what it is wife's important and how they can go about grasping what no individual or organization could do everything and so we've got to understand what is the slice of the pie. We've been asked to deal with and so for FRC. It works with families.
It works with churches it works with public policy, and so in those three areas. We want to be integrating worldview thinking biblical worldview thinking into what families are doing into what public leaders are doing public officials into what churches are doing and so there's a multi-phased strategy number one doing the research. Number two creating resources number three providing advance number four during measurement and training in these areas. So there's going to be a lot of different activity taking place within the lanes that FRC has already been filling.
But then, in addition to that another tactic that will be deploying is that of partnering with other organizations who are like-minded other organizations that understand the significance the primary importance of biblical worldview and so being able to work together doing media together all kinds of things together so that ultimately, this group has an even greater reach than any one of the groups within it could have a larger picture of how this is can work ginger first survey that she's done with this new center.
Are there other takeaways that she would like to talk about.
Well, certainly, only one of the big things that we discovered and it was that, literally, a majority of Americans believe that they can have a biblical worldview I mentioned before, only 6% actually have one.
51% of American adults think they have a biblical worldview that significant because it tells us that it might be a tougher job to get people to pay attention, then we would like to believe because they think they've already figured it out, and so we gotta disabuse them of that notion, and then help them to understand what a biblical worldview really is you notes akin to the fact that in America today about two out of three adults call themselves Christian. But then when you look at what they believe and they are religious habits and lifestyle choices, it becomes pretty obvious pretty quickly that 67% are not necessarily Christians and so in this survey you are looking at the fact that 51%. They have a biblical worldview. When you look at people who identify themselves as Christians.
It's 68% who think they have a biblical worldview and yet our testing shows that only 9% of those people actually have one that we could break it down into all the different components of the population and you see that same kind of distance there were a lot of people think that's what they all operate with you in point of fact, they don't now of related key finding I think was that less than one out of three Americans believe that worldview should affect all dimensions of a person's life that it which speaks to the issue that most people really don't even understand how a worldview operates I mentioned before that it's your decision-making filter in life, which means that really it does affect every aspect of your life.
And so the fact that most people more than two out of three people inside why don't want my worldview affecting all dimensions of my life. So again, there is an educational component that's gonna have to go into this helping people understand what worldview is why it's important how it operates, and so forth. In the proper action then would would be what are some ways that you would like to see people be more active on a good worldview well just take a simple thing that everybody relates to riches elections when we look at our research from the last election. What we know is that most Christians were determining who they were going to vote for based upon the party affiliation with the candidate or the personality of the candidate or the perceived character of the candidate. Those things are fine but ultimately what you're putting into office. If somebody who's going to be making moral decisions for the country and so you want to be taking a look at what they stand for. And here's where it really breaks down when we talked with Christians devoted Christians conservative Christians across the country and asked them to describe to us where they were at and I think was 12 or 13 key issues when we were talking about immigration or energy policies, environmental policies, poverty, economics, family issues, life issues, all of these kinds of things. We found that for the most part Christians actually did not know what they believe they had a difficult time articulating it in one things that we discovered is they were saying. I'm dying to have my pastor teach me not to vote for but teach me how to think analytically about these issues so that I know what to say to other people and I know how to make better choices even related to what candidates for so I mean that.
That's the type of thing where your worldview becomes very relevant if you know how to think about poverty based on biblical teaching about our commitment and our responsibility to those who are struggling in life, then you can look at public policies and try to figure out which one comports to biblical teaching. If you understand what the Bible teaches about the role of government, compared to the role of the individual then you can look at the different policies that are being offered and figure out which candidate comes closest to biblical solution. Thank you very much for just about out of time listeners go to follow your work and learn more about the Center for biblical worldview at the family research Council, they can go to FRC.org/worldview and that will take them to the center for biblical worldview.
Dr. George Barnett, thank you so much for being with us today on family policy matters. You been listening to family policy matters. We hope you enjoy the program and plenitude in again next week to listen to the show online insulin more about NC families were to inform, encourage and inspire families across Carolina go to our website it NC family.work that's NC family.org. Thanks again for listening and may God bless you and your family