Every worldview has a story to tell. These stories describe the world, what it is, and how it works. We call these stories of reality metanarratives. In examining worldviews, we will mainly be exploring their metanarratives.
Why take the metanarrative approach?
Mainly because humans live life through stories. When we describe the events of our day to a loved one, we tell stories. When we recount the events of an exciting, dangerous, or fun moment, we tell stories. Stories speak to who we are and how we see the world.
It makes sense, then, to look at the different worldviews as a set of stories and examines how our lives fit into these larger stories.”
The Metanarrative of Christianity, Part 1: Creation
(Found in Genesis chapters 1 and 2)
The story of Christianity starts off with a bang! In the Beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth. (Gen. 1:1) In the creation account, we see this beautiful Hebrew poetry of God carefully speaking the world into existence. From nothing, God creates something. This is often referred to as Creation ex nihilo. The world exists and is created for no other reason than God willed it.
This certainly sets the stage for us as it paints God as the maker and master of all creation. If we want to know life is supposed to work, we should examine who God is and how he made the world to function.
We learn from the creation account that God has two essential properties.
- Transcendent: God is above and outside of His creation
- Immanent: God is also with and moves alongside His creation
The Christian creation account contrasts these two ideas to demonstrate that God is not a part of His creation and creation is subservient to Him. Despite this, God acts and moves alongside His creation, being personally involved with it.
The role of Humans in the Creation account is a special one. God makes humans in His own image, the Imagio Deo. Humans are created different than the rest of creation and are uniquely linked with God. This gives humans a special kind of value.
Humans are also given a few commands:
- Multiply and fill the Earth
- Subdue and rule over the earth
These commands suggest that God placed humans at the pinnacle of His creation. He gave humans alone the command to rule over and take care of His Earth. Humans, then, are to go out and create in and enjoy the Earth just like God created and enjoyed.
The Finished Product
At the end of His finished work, God looked at His creation and declared that it was the best possible thing it could be. It was perfect.
If that’s true, then why is the world so imperfect today? We’ll explore that topic in Part Two of the Christian story: The Fall.