16th November 2012

Being Faithful To God’s Morality

“Israel’s immorality meant so little to her…”
Jeremiah 3:9 (NIV UK)

Immorality is condemned consistently throughout the old and new testaments. It goes against the very nature of God, whose great faithfulness to us is constant.

Jeremiah explained that both the nations of Israel and Judah had committed endless spiritual and physical adulteries with gods of their own making and with foreign idols. Their sin was not just idolatry but it also involved unfaithfulness in human relationships. Their leaders and celebrities lead in debauchery instead of holiness. It is reminiscent of today’s news. With each passing week there are more appalling stories of sexual abuse, of infidelity in high places, and of deviant lifestyles.

Jeremiah says that Judah made “a pretence” of having higher values than the nation practised (v.9). Perhaps our nations do too. After all our society – its entertainment, songs, books, magazines, you could say most of western culture – is steeped in immoral and amoral thinking.

Rome at the time of Paul was not much different to Jeremiah’s age or to ours. People chose their own morality. Paul told the Roman church to participate in the mind of Jesus, to be clothed with his faithfulness. Thus “let us behave decently…not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery” (Romans 13:13).

For Christians the moral choice is not about trying to create a better society, although, of course, we all desire that. It’s not even about setting a right example so that others may follow, although that too is also good. It is deeper than those ideas. It is about Jesus living his faithful, moral, virtuous life through us and in us. If Jesus were not who he is, we may as well abandon all hope and all our values. We have seen how a godless morality does not work.

Thankfully, however, Jesus is true to who he is. He is faithful to the Father, and we can participate through the Spirit in his obedience to the Father.

And, because Jesus is faithful, we too can be faithful to God and his morality.

Righteous Father, we join in your love by praying for the victims of immorality and abuse, and ask that you would guide us always to be faithful to you and to your values. In Jesus’ name.

Study by James Henderson

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