My theory of knowledge is that we are irrational and life is uncertain, ethics is about being kind, and theology is seeing things from God's point of view. History is determined mostly by weather, technology, and economics, not by human action or inaction.
I also believe we behave on a micro and macro scale the same as we did thousands of years ago (minus the technology). The idea of social progress to me is an illusion.
On a large scale we have little control (fate), but on a small scale we have huge control (free will). My vision of the future is apocalyptic but I do not believe Christ will return soon (on a human scale).
The solution to suffering is ultimately not being separated from God for eternity, but on earth to reduce our own and others' suffering as much as possible. We should never do good things for bad reasons or bad things for good reasons.
I think that politics and religion are intertwined so much as they often are the basis of modern culture. We need to as a country agree to disagree or find some way to coexist without the other group. This comes from the idea that we think we can change who is in power.
Politics as something that the average person got involved with is really a very recent phenomenon even in the United States. Much of that time we have had huge social, political, and economic pressure to conform. The last 2 social revolutions are the only time we have had much involvement in politics by the average citizen.
Our current world situation is driven economically by the ending of the possibility of economic growth as a means to have a more even distribution of wealth (the famous middle class), technologically by what we did to win World War 2 and the Cold War, and weather wise what we did to have the biggest economy in the world. This century life will get more difficult as we try to survive with our current lifestyle without enough resources for everyone.
Religion is focused on the diety of that religion. In Christianity, this is who we call God (The Lord), who has a Mind we call our Heavenly Father, a Body we call the Son of God (Jesus Christ), and His Spirit is simply the Holy Spirit (or Holy Ghost). The Church is a partner with Christ. He is the head and the Church is His hands and feet.
So the point of religion is worship of the deity, in this case God. You choose to do the will of the deity and not your own. Christianity is different because of His character and His power. The other deities are simply worse than people morally and have literally infinitely less power than God does. Some deities live in houses, temples, idols, nature, and sometimes people. God lives in Heaven (as well as everywhere else), and us too, if we choose Him.
Human choice is the only limitation God has over His power, but this is only because He chooses to have it this way. This is why God chooses to have the Church represent Him on earth. Society seeks people with skills and knowledge, but God was the first to use the anti-hero. Instead of trying to impress us with magic instead He uses unlikely people and ordinary things to bring us back to Him.
No person can directly convert another in Christianity. God chooses to bring people to Himself. The greatest miracle is for someone to turn to Christ for help. After having grown in number for 2,000 years, successfully relocating its center into 4 entirely different cultures (Middle East, then Europe, then America, and then Africa), and billions of people worshipping Him today shows the power of God. He can conquer the one limitation He chose to have.
We have learned that no human solutions work, but through God all things are possible. We are weak as a Church and as a species and face a lot of problems, just like any other people and institutions do. But we have outlasted every one of them and we are not in it alone. The Holy Spirit can help you with any problem in your life, if you let God in. He is already knocking on your heart.
There are some things modern society has trouble accepting about the Bible, but ultimately you have to trust that God knows what is best. Faith means belief without fully understanding. We have faith in much of modern society like of democracy, modern medicine science, and math (for instance). But these all have disturbing side effects and connections.
Many of us have faith in our political system. Democracy is better for us than dictatorships, but it does have drawbacks. Little can be accomplished, because so many must agree for anything to happen. Checks and balances can be circumvented or government bodies can work together to do things previously illegal. People do not have enough time or knowledge to vote in an informed manner.
Many of us depend upon modern medicine. Modern medicine is essential to treat many diseases, but it does have drawbacks. It depends upon oil. It makes it very difficult to recycle waste. It is extremely expensive. It is poorly suited for preventative care.
Many of the products we work with are a based on science. Science is great for understanding the mechanics of how things work, but it does have drawbacks. It tends to only get funding if it is first useful for warfare. There is no ethical system as a part of science itself. Technological development does not always benefit the common person.
Many of the tools we use are based on mathematical concepts. Math is very useful for practical applications, but it does have drawbacks. It doesn't answer any questions useful for ethical behavior. It assumes a materialistic view of the universe. It is not understood by most people well enough that they can use it to their advantage.
Freedom and Cost
Everything has a cost. The cost of the modern world is living in the stone age for our great grandchildren in a post-apocalyptic world. Modernity solves many problems and relieves suffering greatly, but it will also create hell on earth.
The cost of eternity with God is paid by Christ in full. Nothing short of the death and resurrection of God Himself would be enough. Who is better to put your faith in than the all powerful God, who stands alongside you?
“He said, ‘I ask you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house; for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, so they won’t also come into this place of torment.’ “But Abraham said to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets. Let them listen to them.’ “He said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ “He said to him, ‘If they don’t listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if one rises from the dead.’”Luke 16:27-31 WEB