Sociological views of faith

Sociological views of faith

Sociological views of faith

Within the research of sociology, we’re offered with three totally different views concerning our interactions with the world and those that reside in it. Though components of all three include components of reality, this writer’s opinion is that the structural-functionalist perspective is extra consistent with that held within the sphere of faith. In discussing our roles on this life, the Bible clearly states that there are “diversities of presents…differings of administrations…and diversities of operations.” (I Corinthians 12:4-6, King James Model) It’s unlucky, nonetheless, that many individuals are inclined to deal with what others ought to do, and never on their very own accountability. The issue with Karl Marx’s battle principle is that it solely focuses on one facet of a problematic scenario. In accordance with him, all of the wealthy are unhealthy and all of the poor are good. In accordance with him, when you’ve got nothing, it’s as a result of those that are wealthy monopolize it from you and shield you by all means the wealth and the means to realize it. Your solely recourse is to insurgent and steal what’s rightfully yours: the Robin Hood complicated, so to talk. Though this writer would by no means assert that every one the wealthy have collected their wealth by righteous means, he too would by no means recommend that every one the poor are so, just because they’re held again by the highly effective. Marx ignores the truth that many wealthy individuals bought there via laborious work and sensible use of their cash, and that many poor individuals additionally entered their state, or stayed there, via a mode of irresponsible life.

From the symbolic-interactionist perspective, we’re offered with the concept that the symbols, or labels, we place on individuals decide how we act in the direction of them. The draw back to this principle is that the world over, totally different peoples and cultures can have conflicting symbols in comparison with these of different cultures. Even inside a tradition, these symbols can change that means over time. This reality stems partially from the truth that we’re taught that there aren’t any absolutes. Thus, we find yourself concluding that one thing is correct, solely to vary our minds about it after we discover ourselves in one other place, and even at one other time. Biblically talking, proper is correct and flawed is flawed irrespective of the place and when you’re.

Structural-functionalism is, in keeping with, “a theoretical orientation that views society as a system of interdependent components whose features contribute to the soundness and survival of the system.” (“Functionalism”) By system is supposed any variety of organizations which have a number of teams or people, who by necessity should act and work together in a particular means to ensure that the organism to outlive. The usage of organism right here refers to the truth that some sociologists, resembling Auguste Comte, noticed the interactions of individuals in a society work in the identical means that totally different components of a residing organism work collectively. Though sociologist Robert Merton didn’t take into account the roles of individuals in society to be synonymous with the interactions of the organs of a residing being, he believed that every being had its personal vital function to play. Those that don’t play their function now not contribute to the features of a society. Slightly, they add dysfunctions that hurt the stability of a society. In faith, as in society, members should act in accordance with their assigned or chosen roles with the intention to survive and perpetuate themselves. In I Corinthians 12, Paul compares the church to the human physique, the place every particular person member of the church has a particular perform. “For because the physique is one and has many members, and all of the members of that one physique, being many, are one physique, so is also Christ. For the physique shouldn’t be one member, however many. If the foot says, As a result of I’m not the hand, I’m not of the physique; is it then not of the physique?” (I Cor. 1:12, 14 and 15)

Karl Marx believed that “society is in a state of perpetual battle on account of competitors for restricted assets” (“What’s”, 2016). He believed that this battle was the results of the wealthy and highly effective (the bourgeoisie) hoarding their wealth and oppressing the poor (the proletariat). Marx separated his view of society into three components: thesis, antithesis and synthesis. In his mannequin, the thesis was the act of the wealthy controlling the technique of manufacturing and wealth, the antithesis was the employees revolting in opposition to the lords, and the synthesis was the ultimate society shaped. Nevertheless, that will not be the tip, as a result of as soon as the synthesis was shaped, it could in flip create one other thesis which might finally result in one other antithesis, and so forth. Marx believed that if all conflicts had been finally resolved, then the right society would have been shaped, as everybody would now be equal. Faith addresses this battle when the Bible offers with correct relationships between these of various stations. Though the Bible signifies that we’re all equal within the facet of our righteousness when it says “…there’s none who do good, no, not one.” (Psalm 14:3), this means that in our life scenario, we’re not essentially equals with these round us. “However in an important home there aren’t solely vessels of gold and silver, but in addition wooden and earth, and a few for honor, and a few for dishonor.” (II Timothy 2:20) What Marx known as antithesis; the bible requires riot. We should always study to understand the place we’re and what we have now. “…for I’ve realized, in no matter state I’m, to be content material with it.” (Philippians 4:11) This doesn’t imply that God requires us to be in a perpetual state of spoil. If we apply ourselves, it’s potential to extricate ourselves from our unfavorable scenario. “If subsequently a person purifies himself of those[iniquités]he shall be a vessel of honour, sanctified, match for using the grasp, and ready for each good work” (II Timothy 2:21). a greater society doesn’t relaxation solely with the employees, the leaders even have a accountability “Masters, give to your servants what’s simply and equal…” (Colossians 4:1).

The attitude of symbolic interactionism states that we see the individuals and issues round us by way of the symbols we have now connected to them. We see individuals otherwise relying on whether or not they’re our sister or our girlfriend, our uncle or our father, or any variety of symbols we have now assigned to these round us. A caveat of this angle is that the that means of the symbols will change over time. An instance is marriage and divorce. The that means of marriage has modified from two events coming collectively in mutual emotions about what they’ll do for one another to “what can the opposite do for me?” Divorce is now not seen as an indication of failure, however relatively as a logo of freedom. In recent times, the divorce fee has skyrocketed, dividing households and even associates. In faith, these identical symbols are used; nonetheless, as a result of they’re appointed by God, there isn’t a chance of change. “I don’t change.” (Malachi 3:6) Within the matter of divorce, the Bible says, “Due to this fact they’re now not two, however one flesh. What God has subsequently joined collectively, let no man separate.” (Matthew 19:6)

So after we take into account these three views from the attitude of the Bible, which one ought to we deal with? When contemplating the symbolic-interactionist perspective, we want to remember what the Bible says about {our relationships} with others. “…no matter you’ll have males do to you, do the identical to them…” (Matthew 7:12) “…an elder, however deal with him as a father, and the younger males as brothers…” (I Timothy 5:1) In direct battle with the battle principle, we’re biblically commanded “to obey those that have energy over you…to salute those that have energy over you…” (Hebrews 13:17&24), and “…Worry God. Honor the king. Servants, be topic to your masters with all worry; not solely to the great and the meek, but in addition to the superior.” (I Peter 2:17) When contemplating the structural-functionalist perspective, it is extremely vital to remember that our most vital concern needs to be to meet our personal tasks. After he assigned roles to his disciples, and one in all them confronted him desirous to know what one other disciple was going to do, Jesus stated to him: “… does that do you? Comply with me.” (John 21:22)


Functionalism. (nd). Full model. Retrieved February 23, 2016, from

What’s Battle Principle? (2016). Investopedia. Retrieved February 23, 2016, from

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