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What’s Wrong with the World?
Here’s a quick look at some of the major worldviews. These are the systems in which people have trusted hoping they will fix the ills in our broken world.

We are living in turbulent times.

The stock market is on a roller coaster ride but mostly in the downhill direction. Our federal politicians in recent months have been preoccupied playing politics it seems. And most of the other news flooding our TV screens these days seems (as usual) to be all quite negative too.

The one world view which I believe understands human nature best is biblical Christianity.

So for people putting their hopes in economics or politics, these are rather unsettling (even depressing) times. Many are throwing up their hands and asking a very basic question – “What in the world is wrong with this world?” It’s a fair question and a good one. Let’s take a quick look at some of the major worldviews that people have trusted to fix our broken world.


Have you ever wondered why Communism faltered and failed in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe? The short answer is, I believe, it didn’t understand human nature. Humans, by nature, think about themselves first. After we’ve taken care of number one, then some of us may make an effort to help someone else less fortunate. In a word, we all tend to be quite selfish.

Communism, in theory, would have worked wonderfully if everybody in society naturally thought about his neighbour and didn’t mind working sacrificially for the State and the betterment of society. The masses who rallied around their Communist leaders did so for selfish reasons themselves, thinking their lives would be improved. And as history has clearly shown, the leaders were the most selfish of all -- hoarding power, living far better than their comrades, and ruthlessly crushing all opposition.


What about the system which seemed to triumph over and replace the vestiges of Communism? Is capitalism the ultimate answer? Most of us in the West would agree that capitalism is far better than Communism in promoting freedom, human rights and democracy. But recent months have shown us that it’s not the perfect system either. The reason? Human nature again is the Achille’s heel.

People tend to be selfish which leads to greed. Greedy people eventually end up making unwise decisions to satisfy their insatiable desire for more. And so the same culprit which caused Communism to collapse is also capable of causing Capitalism to stumble.


The one worldview which I believe understands human nature best is biblical Christianity. This shouldn’t surprise us if the author of the Bible made us in the first place. It tells us straight out in unflattering terms that we’re all imperfect, fallen sinners (see Romans 3:23). By nature, we’re all selfish, self-centred, narcissistic human beings. But Scripture also tells me that there is a way for me to become (not perfect, but) better. It’s through admitting my sinful condition (repentance) and asking God to take control of my life (faith and surrender). What I can’t do, He can. And He promises to change me from the inside out to become a “new creation” (see 2 Corinthians 5:17). We’ll never have a perfect society, but we can all do our part to make sure our lives are moving in the right direction.

Journalist and novelist, G.K. Chesterton was once asked “What’s wrong with the world?” His answer was, “I am.” I think he got it right.

Rob Weatherby serves as pastor of the Bethel Baptist Church family in Whitefish, Ontario.

Originally published in the Sudbury Star, February 7, 2009.




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