“God is the ultimate reality – the absolute foundation of everything that is” (Fredriksen, 2001). Precisely God is the source of the Universe and everything in it, as God creates the Universe in accordance of His plan. The nature of God as ultimate reality is absolute, omnipotent, and omnipresent. All Christian denominations accept the existence of the ultimate reality, which is God. From the Middle Ages, the ultimate reality is understood as impersonal (Sire, 2009, p.26).
2. According to the Christian belief, the world has a direct beginning, which is the divine creation. As the Bible confirms, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). Before creation, there was emptiness and darkness on the surface, “and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters” (Genesis 1:2). The creation of the world reveals “God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature” (Sire, 2009, p.37). thus, the nature of the world is not chaotic, but orderly. As well as God is the source of absolute good, the nature of the world He created is essentially good.
3. The nature of human being is directly defined in Genesis, when the process of the human’s creation is revealed: “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them: male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27). Soon after creation, the man factually “had been given dominion over the world” (Sire, 2009, p.26). Besides, the man was demanded to worship God and live in accordance with the divine plan. As well as God blessed the first man and woman, the essential nature of human being is good. However, the humans are the only creatures, who have free will, as Christianity does not believe in predestination of human being. Precisely because of free will, humans got in the original sin, which resulted in the end of the first Covenant with God, expulsion from Eden, and the appearance of death.
4. Christian views on afterlife are different among the denominations, however, all Christians believe in heaven as the place of absolute divine presence and joy. Heaven is a true purpose to achieve while living physically. In fact, the differences between the Christians lie in the ways to get heaven and concerns about what exactly heaven is like. Christians believe that the humans gain eternal life of the soul after physical death. However, the eternal life can be either joyful in heaven, or painful in hell. The Bible does not provide detailed description of the afterlife, although Jesus frequently mentions heaven as the main reward good people may have after death. Being “children of your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:45) contrasts with hell, in which souls are put in “chains of darkness to be held for judgment” (2 Peter 2:4).
5. Christianity teaches that a human is not able to know anything at all, as only God is the ultimate reality, capable for absolute knowledge. Despite having free will and creativity, a human cannot know everything about the world and divine power. Knowledge and wisdom are possessed in Christianity as the divine gifts (Ecclesiastes 2:26). The Christians imply that “the foundation of human knowledge is the character of God as Creator” (Sire, 2009, p.36). Traditional Christian denominations insist on free, but limited character of human reason and cognition, since in case of gaining perfect knowledge a person becomes factually as omnipotent, as God is. As well as such equity is traditionally impossible in Christianity, some knowledge remains hidden, but develops consistently in accordance with the divine plan.
6. The nature of human morality is based on the divine Commandments and moral teaching God provided to human. Humans are not the source of morality, “so ethics, while very much a human domain, is ultimately the business of God” (Sire, 2009, p.43). The divine measure of morality implies humans to perceive sinful actions bad and God’s Commandments good. The Old Testament provides Ten Commandments, given to Moses, which founds he basic moral rules, including prohibition of murder, theft, adultery, coveting, making idols, and order to honor parents, love God, remember the Sabbath day (Exodus 20:2-7). The New Testament morality is based on Jesus’ teaching, Sermon on the Mount, and personal example of Lord’s life. The human moral reason “is what beings them into contact with God, the perfect being who is the generative principle of reason” (Saldarini, 2001, p.55). Aside of the biblical base, traditional and protestant Christian denominations have own authoritative sources, which explain God’s blessings for the humans, including the world of Saint Fathers, Apocrypha, and so on.
7. Christianity considers human history as consistent process, closely connected with divine revelation. In fact, divine plan from creation till the Second Coming of Jesus is the true meta-narrative of the human historical development. As a researcher explains, “Human history can be subsumed under four words – creation, Fall, redemption, glorification” (Sire, 2009, p.39). Covenants with God, their break, the creation of the new ones, ended up with Christ’s saving mission, is a coherent process of the Universe existence in its historical perspective. Despite rejection of predestination, the Christians believe that the world develops under the God’s control and in accordance with His will. The Bible confirms that God is the only possible source of human history, since “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history” (Acts 17:26).
8. Personally for me, Christian worldview is the most consistent and logical for today. It provides a worthy sense of life and a hope for the future after death. I perceive my own existence as not occasional, as Christianity tells I was born in accordance with the divine plan of creation. Moreover, moral convictions, provided by Christianity, sound actual till today, and should be kept necessarily to provide safety and harmony throughout the whole Universe. The most important feature is that Christian religion provides a distinct life-orienting commitments, which can depend on own preferences, but should not oppose the divine statements. Besides, Christian perception of history as a consistent divine revelation corresponds with my views on human development as well.
- Fredriksen, P. (2001). Ultimate Reality in Ancient Christianity. In R.C. Neville (Ed.), Ultimate Realities: A Volume in the Comparative Religious Ideas Project (61-73). New York: SUNY Press.
- Saldarini, A. (2001). Traditional Judaism. In R.C. Neville (Ed.), Ultimate Realities: A Volume in the Comparative Religious Ideas Project (17-60). New York: SUNY Press.
- Sire, J.W. (2009). The Universe Next Door: A Basic Worldview Catalog. Westmont: IVP Academic.
- The Holy Bible. (2016). Colorado Springs: Biblica.