Foundational Issues in Christian Spirituality and Ethics Essay
Foundational issues in Christian spirituality and ethics are essential to understanding one’s worldview. The purpose of this assignment is to explore my worldview as a Christian by elaborating my understanding of ultimate reality, nature of the universe, human being, knowledge, basis of ethics, and purpose of existence.
What is ultimate reality?
According to Bogue and Hogan (2020), ultimate reality refers to the highest authority. In my Christian view, the ultimate reality is God. He is Supreme, Almighty, and creator of heaven and earth and all things visible and invisible. God is the unique source of all reality. He is supernatural. God is described as omnipresent, omniscient, eternal, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent (Bogue & Hogan, 2020). Consequently, we Christians believe that God, who exists as the trinity, created the world and was pleased with His creation. Additionally, God is the source of morality. For instance, He commanded man, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Genesis 2:16-17). God also demonstrates His supremacy through various miracles and powerful signs that are well documented in both the old and the new testaments of the Bible.
What is the nature of the universe?
As a Christian, the universe was created by God, who rules over it. It is composed of both physical and spiritual worlds. Human beings have been given power over the physical world to be fruitful and multiply and explore the resources within the physical world. However, the spiritual world involves an interaction of the spirit of God and the spirits of human souls. As a result, human beings can communicate to God spiritually through prayer. The existence of the spiritual world is demonstrated by Christ himself when he teaches his disciples to pray, and He is also seen interceding on behalf of us.
What is a human being?
As Christian, human beings are part of God’s creation and were made on the last day of creation. They are superior to other creatures, for they were made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:27). Similarly, as human beings, we are blessed by the Almighty. But unlike God, human beings have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Roman 3:23). The sinful nature of human beings is also depicted during the call of Moses when God orders him to remove his shoes, for he was standing on holy ground. However, God forgives us whenever we repent. Given the valuable nature of human beings as the image of God, human life must be respected and protected at all costs (Baumeister & Bushman, 2020). Likewise, human beings must be treated with dignity and love. Finally, God values his creation. For instance, God became a human being in the person of Jesus Christ.
What is knowledge?
Knowledge is the sum of what is known. As Christians, knowledge is a gift from God. God (1 Corinthians 12:8). Additionally, Christians regard scientific knowledge as a consequence of the utilization of power that was given to them by God. Therefore, human beings must utilize knowledge as a service to humanity (Cuellar De la Cruz & Robinson, 2017). The Bible remains the main source of Christian knowledge. Christians also acknowledge the limited nature of human knowledge and its hindrance by sin. Finally, Christians can pray to God to obtain knowledge through faith since knowledge is directly connected to God’s revelatory acts.
What is your basis of ethics?
Ethics refers to moral principles that govern an individual’s behavior. It encompasses systematizing, defending, and recommending the concepts of right and wrong behavior (Stanley et al., 2018). From a Christian point of view, God is the basis of morality. This is evidenced by the mentioning of the tree of knowledge of good and evil in the creation stories. Following the fall of mankind, human beings became aware of good and evil with an obligation to do good as evil doings are punishable. Subsequently, Christian ethics involves living a life pleasing to God that is guided by Christian scriptures and traditions. For instance, God issues commandments to the Israelites through Moses, which were to be followed, and these are later summarized into the two greatest commandments by Jesus Christ in the New Testament. Consequently, Christians rely on the Bible, a book penned down by human beings supernaturally inspired by God, as the most authoritative source of Christian morals and ethics.
What is the purpose of your existence?
The sole purpose of existence for Christians is to worship God and enjoy a relationship with Him forever. Christians exist to Love God and their fellow human beings, after which they will be rewarded with eternal life. Similarly, Christ encourages Christians to follow him and serve God through doing good deeds to the needy. Christ also redefines the purpose of life. For instance, He fights evil throughout His life, He is sentenced to death, resurrects and finally ascends into heaven, and finally promises to come back to judge the living and the dead. Consequently, Christians spend their life preparing for the second coming of Jesus Christ through service to God.
Foundational issues in Christian spirituality and ethics are core to understanding one’s worldview. For Christians, God is the ultimate reality, and they live to serve Him. Human beings are special and have dominion over other creatures.
Baumeister, R. F., & Bushman, B. J. (2020). Social Psychology and Human Nature. Cengage Learning.
Bogue, D. W., & Hogan, M. (2020). Practicing dignity: An introduction to Christian values and decision-making in health care. In Grand Canyon University. https://lc.gcumedia.com/phi413v/practicing-dignity-an-introduction-to-christian-values-and-decision-making-in-health-care/v1.1/#/chapter/1
Cuellar De la Cruz, Y., & Robinson, S. (2017). Answering the call to accessible quality health care for all using a new model of local community not-for-profit charity clinics: A return to Christ-centered care of the past. The Linacre Quarterly, 84(1), 44–56. https://doi.org/10.1080/00243639.2016.1274631
Stanley, S., Purser, R. E., & Singh, N. N. (2018). Ethical foundations of mindfulness. In Mindfulness in Behavioral Health (pp. 1–29). Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76538-9_1
Foundational Issues in Christian Spirituality and Ethics Instructions
My Spiritual Worldview
What would spirituality be according to your own worldview? How do you believe that your conception of spirituality would influence the way in which you care for patients?
Spirituality is the experience of one’s inner existence, a personal expression, and practice and how the person interprets the world and the inner universe (Bogue & Hogan, 2020). Spirituality is not synonymous of religion. Indeed, many regard themselves to be very spiritual and non-religious. Being spiritual does not need membership in a church, temple, or other religious organization, despite the fact that, many individuals express their spiritual needs via religion. How people connect with their spirituality is entirely up to them.
My spirituality, as a Christian, is based on the belief in the existence of only one God, creator of the finite and infinite, and the Trinity. God promotes love among people regardless of race, gender, religion, or social status. Human beings are children of God, who made us in his image and likeness and his spirit resides in each one of us. As children of God, we have received gifts of wisdom that allow us to develop abilities and skills. The gift of intelligence, the arts, science, and creativity allow us to apply knowledge to solve daily situations in our lives such as medical problems. In the tradition of Christian healthcare, acts of mercy are carried out under the guidance of a Christian spirit that upholds the principles of human dignity, solidarity, the common good, and subsidiarity (Cuellar De la Cruz & Robinson, 2017). As a Christian, as a nurse, as a former firefighter, as a volunteer, I have dedicated my life to the service of others, under the principles that govern nursing ethics such as justice, beneficence, and nonmaleficence (Gaines, 2021), following the command Jesus gave his followers “Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.” (Matt 25:25-40).
Bogue, D. W., & Hogan, M. (2020). Foundational Issues in Christian Spirituality and Ethics. In Grand Canyon University (Ed). Practicing dignity: An introduction to Christian values and decision-making in health care. https://lc.gcumedia.com/phi413v/practicing-dignity-an-introduction-to-christian-values-and-decision-making-in-health-care/v1.1/#/chapter/1
Cuellar De la Cruz, Y., & Robinson, S. (2017). Answering the Call to Accessible Quality Health Care for All Using a New Model of Local Community Not-for-Profit Charity Clinics: A Return to Christ-Centered Care of the Past. The Linacre Quarterly, 84(1), 44–56. https://doi.org/10.1080/00243639.2016.1274631
Gaines, K. (2021). What is the nursing code of ethics? Nurse.org. https://nurse.org/education/nursing-code-of-ethics/
In 750-1,000 words, answer each of the worldview questions according to your own personal perspective and worldview:
What is ultimate reality?
What is the nature of the universe?
What is a human being?
What is knowledge?
What is your basis of ethics?
What is the purpose of your existence?
Support your reflection with the attached topic Resources.
Christian Concept of the imago Dei
What is the Christian concept of the imago Dei? How might it be important to health care, and why is it relevant?
Christian Biblical Narrative Discussion
In 250 words, answer the following question: What do the four parts of the Christian biblical narrative (i.e., creation, fall, redemption, and restoration) say about the nature of God and of reality in relation to the reality of sickness and disease? From where would one find comfort and hope in the light of illness according to this narrative? Explain in detail each part of the narrative above and analyze the implications.
Christian Biblical Narrative Example Solution
From the beginning of time, Christians are guided by the teachings and directives from the bible. They also believe in the supreme God, a powerful Mighty. However, the presence of diseases, suffering, and pain bring temptations to Christians` faith beyond their imagination (Newbanks et al., 2018). As a result, understanding the biblical narrative from creation, fall, redemption, and restoration would help interpret various situations.
During creation, God created everything that exists systematically, all with purpose. Human beings are a special kind of creation, made in the image and likeness of God, each having intrinsic value and worth and mandated stewardship over God`s creations (Hoerhner, n.d.). God is the giver of human life. Furthermore, health is defined not merely by physical wellness but also includes spiritual, emotional, and communal dimensions of wellness of soul and body.
After creation, man was made the custodian of creation and placed in the Garden of Eden, and their relationship was good. However, a man sinned against God`s command. This led to the breakage of their relationship. The consequences of disobedience were pain, suffering, diseases, and death (Newbanks et al., 2018). However, this was not God`s original plan, man was supposed to enjoy his life.
Human hope is restored through redemption and restoration. God showed love by sending Jesus Christ to bring hope and mend the broken relationship with humans. Christ performed miracles to demonstrate God`s power over disease and illness. Christ suffered, died, and was resurrected to save humans from their sins. Christ`s suffering encourages man to endure suffering and hope to obtain God`s glory upon resurrection (Snyder, 2021). Furthermore, in restoration, there is a promise for new creation and eternal life upon the second coming of Christ. This will bring an end to human suffering, illness, pain, and death. Likewise, during sickness, humans find comfort in redemption and restoration. They persevere in suffering like Christ and hope to inherit eternal life free from suffering and death upon resurrection.
Hoerhner, P. J. (n.d.). Biomedical ethics in the Christian Narrative. http://file:///C:/Users/USER/Downloads/week_3_Practicing_Dignity__An_Introduction_to_Christian_Values_and_Decision_Making_in_Health_Care.pdf
Newbanks, R. S., Rieg, L. S., & Schaefer, B. (2018). What is caring in nursing?: Sorting out humanistic and Christian perspectives. Journal of Christian Nursing: A Quarterly Publication of Nurses Christian Fellowship, 35(3), 160–167. https://doi.org/10.1097/CNJ.0000000000000441
Snyder, J. (2021). Providing a sense of hope and relief during the pandemic. Journal of the American Pharmacists Association: JAPhA, 61(3), 230–231. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.japh.2021.03.017
End of Life Decisions case Study Assignment
Case Study: End of Life Decisions
George is a successful attorney in his mid-fifties. He is also a legal scholar, holding a teaching post at the local university law school in Oregon. George is also actively involved in his teenage son’s basketball league, coaching regularly for their team. Recently, George has experienced muscle weakness and unresponsive muscle coordination. He was forced to seek medical attention after he fell and injured his hip. After an examination at the local hospital following his fall, the attending physician suspected that George may be showing early symptoms for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a degenerative disease affecting the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. The week following the initial examination, further testing revealed a positive diagnosis of ALS.
ALS is progressive and gradually causes motor neuron deterioration and muscle atrophy to the point of complete muscle control loss. There is currently no cure for ALS, and the median life expectancy is between 3 and 4 years, though it is not uncommon for some to live 10 or more years. The progressive muscle atrophy and deterioration of motor neurons leads to the loss of the ability to speak, move, eat, and breathe. However, sight, touch, hearing, taste, and smell are not affected. Patients will be wheelchair bound and eventually need permanent ventilator support to assist with breathing.
George and his family are devastated by the diagnosis. George knows that treatment options only attempt to slow down the degeneration, but the symptoms will eventually come. He will eventually be wheelchair bound and be unable to move, eat, speak, or even breathe on his own.
In contemplating his future life with ALS, George begins to dread the prospect of losing his mobility and even speech. He imagines his life in complete dependence upon others for basic everyday functions and perceives the possibility of eventually degenerating to the point at which he is a prisoner in his own body. Would he be willing to undergo such torture, such loss of his own dignity and power? George thus begins inquiring about the possibility of voluntary euthanasia.
Based on the attached \”Case Study: End of Life Decisions,\” the Christian worldview, and the worldview questions presented in the required topic Resources you will complete an ethical analysis of George\’s situation and his decision from the perspective of the Christian worldview. Provide a 1,500-2,000-word ethical analysis while answering the following questions: How would George interpret his suffering in light of the Christian narrative, with an emphasis on the fallenness of the world? How would George interpret his suffering in light of the Christian narrative, with an emphasis on the hope of resurrection? As George contemplates life with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), how would the Christian worldview inform his view about the value of his life as a person? What sorts of values and considerations would the Christian worldview focus on in deliberating about whether or not George should opt for euthanasia? Given the above, what options would be morally justified in the Christian worldview for George and why? Based on your worldview, what decision would you make if you were in George\’s situation? Please use the attached document titled \”Death, Dying and Grief\” as one of the references.
Case Study Healing and Autonomy Assignment
PLEASE SEE THE ATTCHED DOCUMENTS. CHART FOR TOPIC 3 IS ATTACHED. PLEASE USE THE REFERENCES ATTACHED.
In addition to the topic Resources, use the chart you completed and questions you answered in the Topic 3 about \”Case Study: Healing and Autonomy\” as the basis for your responses in this assignment. Answer the following questions about a patient\’s spiritual needs in light of the Christian worldview.
In 200-250 words, respond to the following: Should the physician allow Mike to continue making decisions that seem to him to be irrational and harmful to James, or would that mean a disrespect of a patient\’s autonomy? Explain your rationale.
In 400-500 words, respond to the following: How ought the Christian think about sickness and health? How should a Christian think about medical intervention? What should Mike as a Christian do? How should he reason about trusting God and treating James in relation to what is truly honoring the principles of beneficence and nonmaleficence in James\’s care?
In 200-250 words, respond to the following: How would a spiritual needs assessment help the physician assist Mike determine appropriate interventions for James and for his family or others involved in his care?