Who determines what is morally right? I have ran into some who declare that either each individual determines what they think is morally right or that the society and government does. In order to demonstrate the flaw in this slaw, let us look at abortion.
Consider the law making it legal to murder your own baby, while it is in the womb, for instance. Many believe it is simply a health choice that is a woman’s right. Others believe it is murder, because the life of a human being is being taken. Who is correct? Can both be right? If we go strictly by the law of the land, it is legal and therefore morally correct? Does that mean that prior to 1973(Roe vs Wade) that abortion was immoral? Does morality move with the culture, or is it a constant?
The point is, humans cannot ultimately determine what is moral and what is immoral, because humans have different ideas about what is and is not moral. There has to be a baseline to work from. Therefore, from a Christian perspective, we look to the lawgiver Himself, God, who’s standards do not change. Whether we like it or not, what God determines is good, is good, and what God determines is evil, is evil. I understand that there are those who may agree that God makes these determinations but, at the same time, may have a very low view of Scripture(believe it is corrupt or do not believe any of it is the word of God) and end up making their own determinations, just as an atheists would, based on what they determine to be moral or immoral. This brings us to the point where we have to concede that all opinions are just as valid as any other opinion, even if they are opposed. It has to be either all opinions are valid, or no opinions are valid. In other words, who determines who’s opinion is the correct opinion? If you determine my opinion is wrong and I determine your opinion is wrong, who determines who is right? The majority? A human judge? What if they are wrong? How do you know?
One approach is to throw out some sort of, “if it doesn’t hurt anyone else then it is okay” philosophy. That sounds good, but if you actually take the idea to where it leads, it doesn’t work. Back to the abortion issue; either way you go, someone is harmed. If a mother aborts her baby, she does it harm. If you force the mother to carry the child, many would say she is harmed.
This is why I aim to filter everything through the Bible and trust it, as God’s word, when determining what is moral and
what is not. Now I will venture into the o
ther hot button topic of the current culture war; homosexuality. Based on the Bible, God says marriage is between a man and a woman. Yes there are instances in the Bible where men had more than one wife, but keep in mind, just because it is in the Bible does not mean God endorses the behavior. Not only did He decree in Genesis that a man should leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife, He also clearly tells us that homosexuality is wrong. Below is a portion of Romans 1, beginning in verse 18 that actually lists many sins. This is what God’s word says, whether we like it or not.
Romans 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,
19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.
20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,
21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.
22 Professing to be wise, they became fools,
23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.
24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves,
25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature.
27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.
28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting;
29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers,
30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful;
32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
It is noteworthy to mention that homosexuality is only one inappropriate behavior mentioned in Romans 1. It is also important to see that the sins mentioned after verse 23 are what God gives people over to. Therefore, when we see these evil activities being flaunted and paraded as good, in our nation, we are more than likely seeing the wrath of God and the end result of verses 18-19; ” For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. ” We could say, therefore, these are not sins that will bring the wrath of God, but the wrath of God has already arrived, in the form of Him giving people over to these sins. Do not forget why. It is because they suppress the truth in unrighteousness. In other words, they love their sin and reject God’s authority because of it.
This is precisely why we want to decide for ourselves what is moral and what is not. We love sin and do not want anyone, even our Creator, dictating what we can and cannot do. People will love different sins. Some love to lie, some love to fornicate, some steal, etc. That is why there are so many different ideas of what is and is not moral and precisely why we must look to God, who is perfect, for the standard.
All Scripture is from the NKJV
Until All Hear!