The Integration of Faith and Learning

Robert A. Harris

Version Date: July 7, 2004

This page describes my book, The Integration of Faith and Learning (Eugene, OR: Cascade Books, 2004). ISBN 1-59244-671-X.
You can order the book from by clicking the ad below.


The Integration of Faith and Learning: A Worldview Approach provides students with the philosophical context and practical tools necessary for making the
connections between Christian knowledge and the knowledge they will acquire during their undergraduate and graduate years in higher education.

This book focuses on helping students understand how worldviews influence the interpretation of data and even what is judged to be knowledge itself. The
worldviews of philosophical naturalism, postmodernism, and Christianity are compared and analyzed.

Throughout the book, emphasis is placed on helping students develop the practical skills needed to evaluate knowledge claims and to integrate all knowledge into a unified whole through the touchstone of Christian truth.


Harris' book on the integration of faith and learning provides an insightful and systematic way for the university student to filter ideas through the grid of a robust Christian worldview and life. In a time when conceptual illiteracy and moral confusion abound, Harris provides a straightforward account of how to integrate one's academic learning with faith. By applying the principles laid down in this book, a new Christian intelligentsia will emerge that is unabashedly Christian in their faith and learning.  —Paul Gould, Christian Leadership Ministries’ Academic Initiative

This is a much needed exhortation to all Christians who want to make an impact on today's society—or need the tools to keep the faith in spite of today's society. This is a well thought out journey into many fields and philosophies—its breadth is as encompassing as its depth.  . . . This is a must read for students, teachers, and all lovers of wisdom!  —Brett Peterson, President, Coastland University

Worldview survey books abound, but what sets this one apart and makes it essential is its treatment of how knowledge functions and is propagated “in the real world.” It is insufficient to merely categorize thinkers or their views. Students need to reckon with how certain claims are advanced and accepted regardless of their merits. Harris’ book teaches a savvy form of skepticism that still exudes a love of truth and values the life of the mind. Highly recommended for home schoolers, youth workers, campus ministers, college students, professors, and anyone concerned with training Christian students in how to engage the world of ideas. —Patrick Rist, Christian Leadership Ministries’ Academic Initiative

The Author:

Robert A. Harris has taught courses in writing, literature, and critical thinking at the college and university level for more than 25 years. He holds the Ph.D. from the University of California at Riverside.

Table of Contents:

Introduction    v

Chapter 1. Backgrounds to Integration    1
1.1 An Overview of the Integration of Faith and Learning
1.2 The Search for True Knowledge
1.3 Knowledge Versus Belief
1.4 Christian Belief
1.5 Integration and Critical Thinking
1.6 Integration as an Ongoing Process
1.7 Integration and the Educated Christian
1.8 Implications for Integration

Chapter 2. Why Integrate Faith and Learning? 23
2.1 Is Integration Really Necessary?
2.2 Why Not Follow the “Two Realms” View?
2.3 Integration Produces Confidence in Learning
2.4 Secular Learning Is Incomplete
2.5 The Christian Worldview as a Clarifier
2.6 A Commitment to the Unity of Truth
2.7 What Happens Without Integration?
2.8 What Are the Results of Integration?

Chapter 3. Where Does Knowledge Come From? 39
3.1 What is Knowledge?
3.2 Whose Epistemology?
3.3 The Impact of Worldview on Knowledge
3.4 The Issue of Authority
3.5 Implications for Integration

Chapter 4. Political and Social Influences on Knowledge 57
4.1 The Politics of Knowledge
4.2 The Sociology of Knowledge
4.3 Implications for Integration

Chapter 5. Worldview Foundations 77
5.1 What is a Worldview?
5.2 Ontology Anyone?
5.3 The Assumption of God
5.4 The Exclusion of God
5.5 Keeping God Out
5.6 Implications for Integration

Chapter 6. Science and Scientific Naturalism   97
6.1 In Praise of Science
6.2 The Rise and Fall and Rise of Scientism
6.3 The Definition of Scientific Naturalism
6.4 Difficulties with Naturalism
6.5 Confusions About Science Caused by Naturalism
6.6 Fact and Interpretation
6.7 Implications for Integration: Archaeoraptor: A Case Study

Chapter 7. The Worldview of Postmodernism 135
7.1 What is Postmodernism?
7.2 The Historical Context
7.3 Postmodernist Anti-foundationalism
7.4 Postmodernism and Christianity
7.5 Implications for Integration

Chapter 8. The Worldview of Christianity 169
8.1 Christianity and the Christian Worldview
8.2 God
8.3 Reality (Ontology)
8.4 Knowledge and Truth (Epistemology)
8.5 Reason
8.6 Human Nature
8.7 Ethics and Values (Axiology)
8.8 Humanity’s Challenge
8.9 The Solution to Humanity’s Challenge
8.10 Implications for Integration: The Hermeneutics of Integration

Chapter 9. Evaluating Worldviews  187
9.1 Integration as Critical Thinking
9.2 Factual Adequacy
9.3 Logical Consistency
9.4 Explanatory Power
9.5 Livability
9.6 Knowledge Claims and Ideology
9.7 A Handful of Fallacies
9.8 Implications for Integration

Chapter 10. Joining Faith and Learning 221
10.1 The Meaning of Integration
10.2 General Approaches to Integration
10. 3 Specific Approaches to Integration
10.4 Integrative Outcomes
10.5 A Hint About Christian Scholarship
10.6 Implications for Integration

Chapter 11. A Taxonomy for Worldview Integration 249
11.1 The Integrative Challenge
11.2 Worldview
11.3 Purpose and Focus
11.4 Assumptions
11.5 Methods
11.6 Origins
11.7 Implications for Integration

Chapter 12. The Christian Touchstone 271
12.1 The Dynamics of Integration
12.2 Christophobia
12.3 The Needed Renaissance
12.4 Implications for Integration

Appendix: Useful Web Sites 287

Bibliography 291

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About the author:
Robert Harris is a writer and educator with more than 25 years of teaching experience at the college and university level. RHarris at