Summary: Man is a fallen creature and needs more than human help to live righteously. We need the power and wisdom that comes from God.
Reading: Psalms 19:7-11
I doubt there is anyone gathered here this morning that is not aware of the acts of civil disobedience taking place in the city of San Francisco where elected city officials are granting marriage licenses and often conducting marriage ceremonies for same-sex couples. You may also be aware that this practice is spreading, no doubt encouraged by the complacency of our judicial system. The city of New York is issuing licenses and a city in New Mexico attempted to join the act but was prevented by that state’s Attorney General.
It’s a mess and far from resolution but what we are witnessing is the latest event in a steady decline in the moral fabric of American society. Today we are openly exposed to some of the most immoral actions of men ever committed. This exposure is from every segment of our everyday lives; movies, television, radio, newspapers, magazines, even from people we meet each day.
We have become de-sensitized. By repeated exposure, we are no longer shocked by it. Our senses have become dulled over time. We oppose it less and less. It is a truth that the further the boundaries are pushed the less we are shocked by the previous immoral things.
Rather than dealing with specific deeds, I want us today to examine the moral myths which are the false foundations laid to justify unethical and immoral behavior.
I. Reasons for immoral conduct.
A. One reason for why sinful conduct exists lies in human nature.
1. Jeremiah said: “The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; who can understand it?” Jeremiah 17:9
2. Paul Romans 7:18-20
3. Even of some who believed when they beheld the miracles of Jesus, John wrote, “But Jesus, on His part, was not entrusting Himself to them, for He knew all men, and because He did not need anyone to testify concerning man, for He Himself knew what was in man.” John 2:24-25
B. Another reason is found in the human intellect.
1. Sin affects the mind as well as the body. Sin can cause us to reason foolishly. Man in sin is cunning and devious in ways to justify his conduct.
2. If we reject the righteousness of God, we can never be said to be wise. We will become as fools. Romans 1:18-32
3. In fact, man can only be wise if he seeks after the will of God.
[So let us examine some moral myths, some of the ways immoral behavior is rationalized in the thinking of men.]
II. The Myth of Neutrality
A. This myth consists in the belief that it is best to take a value-neutral stance.
1. Some will say, “It doesn’t affect me, it’s really none of my business. Who am I to judge?”
a. Matthew 7:1-5 (Judge not…)
b. “Do not judge, and you will not be judged; and do not condemn, and you will not be condemned; pardon, and you will be pardoned. “Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.” Luke 6:37-38
c. “I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me John 5:30
d. “If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. “He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings has one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day. John 12:47-48
f. Moral questions are dealt with directly in Christianity. The light in which Christians are called to walk demands honesty in dealing with sin, otherwise we walk in darkness. Many specific deeds are not named in Scripture. We determine their rightness by exercising our minds in righteousness.
2. Some parents will surprisingly avoid the responsibility and privilege of answering questions about religion. Some say that they will just allow their children to decide for themselves.
a. It is true that each person must decide how he or she will live. But that does not mean that we shirk from stating what is right. We should in fact be teachers and promoters of what is good and right. Likewise, we should condemn what is wrong.
b. Admittedly, there are some issues that are difficult to determine with certainty. While we should be cautious or even neutral about these, the majority of moral questions are not difficult to ascertain with the guidance of Scripture. Even children can correctly answer basic questions about right and wrong.