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Biblical Foundation For Christian Morality
The word ‘character’ has been defined descriptively under two main headings in this article: (a) exposition, (b) exposition of the Bible. The main reason for this group is to be able to compare the biblical moral system, which is the subject of this study, with other moral systems. Scott B. Rae said, ‘many people use the word morals. Technically, ethics refers to what is right and good. Morality is the end result of moral discourse, the reality of right and wrong’.
A Brief Definition of Behavior
According to The New Bible Dictionary, the words ‘morals’ and ‘morals’ in the Greek and Latin literature mean ‘actions. to do. It is clear that this is what will be seen as good for the individual and for society. Scott B. Rae goes a little further as to what the real concern is. He said that morals are mainly concerned with questions about good and bad, the ability to distinguish between the two, and the justification of the difference.3 There may be people’s beliefs about what is good and what is bad. However, people are faced with many new and difficult situations, so people are forced to discuss the morals. Samuel Enoch Stumpf, in his book, ‘Elements of Philosophy’ has the following questions: Why can’t we do what we want to do? What difference does it make to anyone else how we live? Why does the question of morality arise in the first place? Why should we think that one behavior is better than another? Is telling the truth better than trying to get out of trouble by telling lies? And who has the authority to tell us what to do? Finally, to say that one must study ethics to find answers to questions, what should I do? And why should I do that?4 From Stumpf’s words, we can see that the main issue that divides people in their minds about morals is the main source of moral authority.
Norman L. Geisler in the first seven chapters of his book, ‘Ethics: Options and Issues’ shows this division between people when he discusses the basic methods of ethics. He argues that ethical behavior can be divided into two main categories: deontological (the standard task) and teleological (the end). Deontological systems are systems that are based on principles about which actions (or behavior or intentions) are right or wrong. Teleological systems, on the other hand, are systems that derive from the final results produced by actions. According to him ‘relativism’ refers to a moral system in which rights and wrongs are not real and unchangeable, but related to the nature of the person (cultural relativism) or personal preferences (moral subjectivism). Geisler. Furthermore, Geisler suggested that there are six main moral theories: (i) Antinomianism – says that there are no moral norms; (ii) Situationism – asserts that there is one fixed law (the law of love); (iii) All faith – they say that there are other laws but there are none; (iv) non-compete clauses; (v) the inconsistency of absolutism – they argue that there are many traditions that sometimes conflict and one is forced to do less evil; and (vi) graded absolutism – it believes that many normative laws are sometimes contradictory, but one is obliged to obey the higher laws. Geisler showed that these six levels are based on the idea of moral methods, which are related to behavior – deontological.7 In contrast, the fourth method does not emphasize the nature but the end – teleological, and is described as a non-traditional or practical method.
Meaning of the Bible
1. What Happened Around the World
DH Field said that, ‘biblical ethics are based on God, instead of following the opinion of the majority of people, or conforming to the behavior of tradition, the text encourages us to start with God and his will – not with man and his habits – when we look ‘children’s moral advice. .8 In order to understand the meaning of the Bible on morals, one must examine the text, as Field observed, to see what God says and what He wants. He explains five things from the Bible about the virtues of the Bible, pointing us to the man of God so that we can find those virtues. God alone is good, and his will shows what is good, acceptable, and perfect; ii) the source of moral knowledge is revelation. According to the Bible, Knowing good and bad is not so much a theoretical investigation as accepting divine revelations; iii) moral teaching and words such as praise rather than words. Except in the OT wisdom books, moral judgments are clearly laid out, not well challenged. On the other hand, philosophers needed to consider their moral judgment to convince people that they are good; iv) What is important in biblical culture is imitation of God. God defines goodness in his person. The main purpose of man according to the Bible is to imitate him; v) Religion and morals and doctrine. The moral teachings of Scripture lose their credibility when the religious foundation is removed. Religion and beliefs go hand in hand as a building block. Biblical principles are derived from biblical teaching and the two are not mutually exclusive. 9
2. Behavior in the Old Testament
From a general guide to the morals of the Bible, it is necessary to understand the idea as it is shown in the two covenants. In the Old Testament, a gradual understanding of the covenant, the Law and the Prophets can help one to better understand morals. These three aspects will now be examined individually.
The covenant that God made with Israel through Moses (Ex. 24) had a direct and broad meaning. God’s grace as seen in his acts of love and concern in delivering Israel from Egypt, gives a great purpose to obey his commandments. The Israelites as God’s friends were united in responding graciously to God’s acts of eternal love. They were called to his will in appreciation of his grace, not in fearful submission to threats of punishment. For example, for this reason, slaves had to be treated generously because God was generous to the Hebrew slaves in Egypt.
The agreement also promotes greater awareness of corporate cooperation in Israel. The result was not only to unite man with God, but also to bind all members of the covenant into one body. So one person’s sin affects the whole community (Josh 7), and everyone has a responsibility to help those in need. The emphasis on OT ethics is based on social norms.
This covenant gave the context of giving God’s law. A defining feature of Old Testament law was its emphasis on maintaining good relationships between people and between people and God. It can be noted that the main consequence of breaking the law was not physical punishment, but the breaking of relationships. (Read 1:2). The Ten Commandments, which should be considered the heart of the law, deal with the most important relationship. They describe holiness based on faith, worship and life.
The conditions of people in Israel changed a lot since the time of Moses, and the Israelites failed to see how the law needed to be obeyed in their daily activities in society, which also affected their relationship with God. The prophets made it their mission to interpret the law by digging down to its basic principles and applying them to the real moral problems of their day.
2. Character in the New Testament
Norman L. Geisler said the following about the New Testament
1) That Christian values are based on God’s will. It is, as they say, the form of
the role of God; moral responsibility, which is something we should do
to do. It is written;
2) that Christian values are certain. The fact that the virtues of God do
unchangeable (Mal 3:16) means that the responsibilities that come from his nature are absolute. Geisler points out that everything that can be found in God’s immutable qualities are virtues such as holiness, justice, love, truth and mercy. Some laws come from the will of God, but they are not certain. That is, it must be obeyed because God commanded it, but he did not establish it for all people, time and place. Morality, on the contrary, binds all people at all times and places;
3) That Christian values are based on God’s revelation. What God has commanded
are all revealed (Romans 1:19-20; 2:12-15) in nature, and
directly (Romans 2:2-18; 3:2) in the Scriptures. The whole revelation of God
it has its law for all people. His special revelation proclaims his
will to believers;
4) That Christian behavior is important since good behavior is provided by
God of Morals. Geisler said that there is no moral law without a
A moral lawgiver, or a moral law without a moral lawgiver. Therefore
Christian values are clear and not descriptive. Christians do not have theirs
the standard of Christianity but the standard of Christians – The
the Bible; and
5) Christian and deontological values. That is, based on the principles that
actions (or behavior or intentions) are right or wrong.10
Morality, as defined in this paper is the essence of what is right and wrong. But the big problem is how to find out. The main question that arises in this case is: Where is the main source of moral authority? One group of people believe that authority is static, people have the authority to make their own rules and behavior – they fall under the teleological category. Another group believes that moral authority is transcendent, that is, authority exists outside of normal human experience. In biblical ethics, that authority is God, who has revealed himself to people through his unique and universal revelation. This makes biblical ethics unique. It is deontological. In both the Old and New Testaments it is clear that morals are grounded in God’s nature and character.
As has been shown, morals and ethics are not mutually exclusive. For Christians, moral principles are not only about the good but about choice. For people who are not Christians, then they choose the good. Whether a person is a Christian or not as a person, then they will talk about morals.
1Scott Rae, Social Decisions: An Introduction to Ethics (Michigan: Zondervan
Publishing House, 1995), p. 15.
2D.H. Field, Ethics: New Bible Dictionary. (Leicester: Inter-Varsity Press, 1982),
p. 351 .
3Scott Rae, Social Decisions: An Introduction to Ethics (Michigan: Zondervan
Publishing House, 1995), p. 21.
4Enoch Stumpf, Elements of Philosophy (London: McGraw-Hill, Inc., 1993), p. 21.
5Norman L. Geisler, Ethics: Decisions and Issues. Michigan: Baker Book House,
1989), p. 24.
6Scott Rae, Social Decisions: An Introduction to Ethics (Michigan: Zondervan
Publishing House, 1995), p. 16.
7Norman L. Geisler, Ethics: Choices and Issues. Michigan: Baker Book House,
1989), p. 25.
8D.H. Field, Ethics: New Bible Dictionary. (Leicester: Inter-Varsity Press, 1982),
p. 351 .
9 No, p. 351.
10Norman L. Geisler, Ethics: Choices and Issues. Michigan: Baker Book House,
1989), pages 22-24.
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