Social Problems 1

Course Description:
Societies, governments, and individuals enjoy a very complex relationship with each other, often with no shortage of problems. Building on the foundation of God’s Word and an understanding of human sinfulness, students will focus on the causes of and responses to these problems. Focusing on one area of concern at a time (e.g., poverty, health care, the environmental crisis), students will discover not only how these social problems affect them personally and the world around them, but how they can make a local and global difference for the kingdom of God.

Recommended Prerequisites:

Grade Level:
9th – 12th Grade recommended

Approved by:

Course Types Available:

  • Full course (0.5 credit, 6 weeks minimum / 6 months maximum)

Biblical Integration Information:

  1. Creation: When God created Adam and Eve and placed them in the Garden of Eden, they had but one rule: “You must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die” (Genesis 2:17). So long as they did not break that rule, humans would be in utter harmony with God, self, one another, and the world around them.
  2. Fall: As a result of the Fall, though, humans are alienated from God, prone to self-shame and blaming others, and banished from the world as God intended it to be. Nowhere is this more evident than with “social problems”—crime, poverty, war, terrorism, environmental crises, the AIDS epidemic, systemic injustice in education and health care, etc. The list can go on and on, and in one way or another, it can all be attributed to human sin and rebellion against God (Romans 1:29; 3:23).
  3. Redemption: With the gospel of the crucified and resurrected Christ, however, all of these problems find their ultimate resolution—even if we can’t see that full resolution until Christ returns (Revelation 21:1–8). Far from implying that Christians should sit back and relax while God does his work in the world, this suggests that Christians should actively participate in that work (cf. Philippians 2:12–13). In addition to proclaiming the gospel and making disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18–20; Mark 13:10), this entails doing good and working toward responsible, informed solutions to social problems (cf. Titus 3:8). For instance, Christians should love the poor and those affected by AIDS and other diseases by avoiding overly simplistic judgments of them (Luke 13:1–5) and helping them in tangible ways (e.g., Proverbs 19:17; Luke 3:11). They should also, as far as possible, live at peace with everyone (Romans 12:18); be subject to their governing authorities (13:1–5); and wholeheartedly pursue goodness, righteousness, and truth (e.g., Ephesians 4:17—5:20).

To see how these truths are specifically explored in this course, visit the course information page in the course and click on “Guiding Principles.”

Required Purchased Materials: