The following is a guest column by David D. Seel, medical doctor, Houston, Texas.

Returning to america after years abroad one lives for a time soaking up vivid impressions of abundance, material beauty, and progress. Sooner or later a little bell starts ringing in the back of one’s brain, insistent, persistent. It is a bell that calls us to beware the culture, to fear the direction toward which the stream of Western life is flowing, to swim once again against the current. And one need not have been away from America to sense the forces that are eroding traditional community values, family structure, and personal ethics.

The conflict is, in fact, universal. The disciple of Christ is involved in a battle of cosmic dimension: it is the conflict between the prince of this world and the forces of the Lord of Hosts. There is an inescapable intellectual struggle, a conflict of fundamental premises raging about us at every moment.

In order to understand the conflict, we must remember that the biblical perspective is that we exist in a universe that is not only natural but also supernatural. The prevailing thought pattern of our culture is naturalistic, the assertion that we can know only that which we can prove with our senses or with scientific data. According to naturalism, the universe is confined to that which we observe by using the discoverable laws of cause and effect.

Christians too believe in the uniformity of natural causes, but for us the system is not closed; God cannot be confined within it, nor can God’s image-bearer, man. There are two parts to reality: beyond the natural world there is a supernatural universe where love and goodness and ultimate values and absolute truth exist, and where God dwells. He is there. As Francis ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.

Our digital archives are a work in progress. Let us know if corrections need to be made.