Chapter 7 Why I Believe in Moral Absolutes

I get so excited when the Bible totally matches logic and reality! Consider, the best person to give instructions for a new invention is the inventor! Therefore, if there truly is a Creator and a book of His instructions, then logically it will match logically and be most effective in reality! As Christians, we believe that the Bible is our guide to moral absolutes.
The spread of Christianity across the globe moved multitudes into civilized societies of moral absolutes. But today, new thought systems are negating Christianity and its moral absolutes. We are becoming a globe of relative or situational absolutes. It is sold by the good sounding thoughts of “love everyone and give everyone the freedom to determine their own morals”. It sounds good, but is not consistent or true to reality. Do we “love” the theif, rapist, and murderer, allowing them to determine their own morals” and call it good and OK? Do we consider wife beating or child sacrifice tolerable as long as it is part of a nation’s culture and heritage?
“Woe to them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” Isaiah 5:20
Today, moral standards are sinking to horrific depths. When I was young, adultery and fornication were considered shameful; homosexuality was not even know to my mind; and TV adds with models wearing only undergarments would have been pornographic. Today, we see the emergence of worse degradation of morality in child pornography and even beastiality.
Kenndy states on page 83, “We should keep in mind that every television program, every newscast, every magazine, every novel, every motion picture is based on some ethical presuppostion, derived from a wide variety of ethical systems” Today, we could also add every cartoon, youtube video, and Facebook post to that list. I also add educational systems to the list. I noticed the humanistic ethical bias in the educational systems when my children were young and determined to home school them as long as possible in order to keep them from growing those conceptual roots at a young age. Few people take the time to examine the question of morals and ethics, yet that is foundational to who we are, what we believe, and everything we do. How do we make decisions if our ehtics are fuzzy and confused? How do we find the truth concerning moral absolutes in reality and logic?
If we determine there are some things that are truly right and wrong (moral absolutes), how do we determine what they are? There are only 2 foundations in answering this question…..either God determined (as in Christianity or other religion) or man determined (as in humanism). Kennedy approaches this from the study of philosophy. I am more inclined to approach it from the reality and logic that I live in. Therefore, it is easy for me to examine these truths based on if it is consistent in being a mother (parent) and a teacher. In Christianity, we have that same relationship with ourselves and the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit…..who are trying to train us in righteousness, goodness, and truth…..for our own good!
So, I am going to list Kenney’s ethical types and analyse if they would work effectively in reality as a loving parent. First, let’s look at speculative or relative absolute morality and ethics…..
Naturalism – believes man is totally matter as an complex animal, nothing spiritual. I only need one thought to rule out this logic and reality…..identical twins…..they have the same genetics (matter), but can be totally different in personality and spirit.
Idealism – the basis of reality is spiritual, is pre-existent to matter, and of more importance. People who believe that man made utopia on earth is possible, they “have their heads in the clouds”, and “stick their heads in the sand”. Matter is a reality as is evil. It must be dealt with. Does a good parent ignore when their child is disobedient because they say their child is precious and really has a good heart? Many forms of child psychology today would have you believe that disciplining your child is harmful to their spirit, but the Bible says that it is the parent who disciplines is the parent who really loves.
Pragmatism – If something works, it is good. NO. If my child cheats to get a good grade, does that make it good? If they lie to get out of trouble and it works, is it good?
Egoism – It says that I can determine for myself what is good for me. This one is so prevelant today! It is constantly in the media, music, and entertaiment….get what you want, when you want it, and how you want it….it is your choice. Pursue your desires. I can easily see the selfish, spoiled, rebellious, and uncompassionate child emerging. The promotion of idividualism is also under this banner.
Hedonism – is like egoism with the addition of whether something will bring pleasure to the individual. Adultery would fall into this category. Would I want to teach my children that adultery is OK because it brings pleasure?
Altruism – It says that we must seek the good of others or for the common good. This is where we find the globalists, the socialists, and the communists. This system does not allow for individual talents, responsibilites, or rewards. If one child is disobedient, do you discipline all? If one child helps with chores and the other do not, do you reward all the same? Illogical.
Libertarian – all ethical decisions are based on man’s free will. Yes, our children have the free will to choose right or wrong, but in reality they will face the consequences of their choices.
Determinism – man is controled by some outside force. A more extreme form of this is fatalism where our whole lives are already preset. Reading horoscopes or consulting a psychic come under fatalism. Much popular psychology comes under determinism with the tought that the person’s environment will determine their end; and also the systmes of behavioristic psychology. There is some truth in this, but it is incomplete, inadequate, and inconsistent. If this were so, then no one could rise above the position they were born into…..and we could rehabilitate everyone by manipulation of their behavior. Kennedy contributes the thought, will cleaning up all the poor slum areas make crime extinct?
Teleological – The most important thing to determine if something is ethical is if it ends well. Questions: How do you know when it ends? How do you determine if the end is good or not? Reality check…if a businessmen has great success and gains great wealth, but through cheating and bribery, is that ethical?
Anteleological – The end is not important, rather the intensions. Reality check…. a child’s intentions are to light a candle and bring it to mom for her birthday, but it results in burning the house down. Is allowing children to use matches ethical? Just because someone is sincere, does not make it right.
Atheist and Humaist – This view is that there are good basic man-made ethics, but no reverence for God is required. Concerning God’s 10 Commandments, they agree with the ones on how people should relate with one another, but not with any on how people should relate with God. In my parent analogy, it would mean a child obeying a list of rules, but not recognizing, loving,or honoring the parent who wrote the rules. Teaching would have the same logic….to follow the rules, but not respect the teacher!
Do you see why the concept of relative and situational ethics is absurd? Where is the standard? Where is the consistency? Where is the reality? Where is the logic? Yet, people continue to be ignorant of why they believe what they believe. Each of these man made ethical systems can be made to sound “good” and “convincing”. But, what is the actual truth and reality?
In the Bible, God’s Word, we have an ethical system that is balanced, rigtheous, irrespective of persons, absolute, and meets all the needs of the human heart and life. It does deal with a person’s motives. As a Christian, our motive is love, not what I want or what is best for me. We are motivated to follow and obey God, our Father, because we love and highly respect Him. We are motivated by love in how we relate to others. This is the same motive of a loving child towards their loving parent…. a desire to please and do what is right (righteous).
Absolute ethics are rules or laws are given to make our lives and choices better with better consequences. The laws convict us when we fail and discipline us towards correction into what is right. We learn the reality that none of us is perfect. Romans 3:10, says that there is none righteous. We cannot be ethically perfect in ourselves or according to any man made system. In speaking of Jesus, Romans 5:19 says, “By the obedience of One shall the many be made righteous.” We can only be forgiven and made perfect in Jesus Christ. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. And He has not left us alone in our sinful state, He helps us to work to improve. We have a Savior and A Helper!
This fits reality as I see it. There are real “universally know”, almost instinctual standards of morality and ethics. It takes some twisted thinking and manipulation of speech to make something bad sound good and reasonable. There is rebellion in the world, which requires correction and discipline. A loving parent will give the good moral absolutes to their children so that the childen will have a better quality of life and consequences. When, the child fails, as all children do, the parent will be there to forgive and teach and lead into greater righteousness.
Moral absolutes are scriptural, reality, consistent, apply to everyone, are motived by love, balanced, logical, just, and just plain true!
What do you believe so that you speak it, live it, and do it? How do you make a moral decision? Where do you go when the end is not what you intended? What do you do when someone “sins” against you and says they have the right and free choice to do whatever they want. What standards do you believe and live by? Why? If you are honest in your examination, I think you will find your ethics are irregular, confused, and fuzzy, having been influenced by many different sources. Time to examine the evidence for the Bible as Truth!

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