Three Empowering Virtues – Part Two

“He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8

Three virtues resonate in our text.

The first speaks of morality. We are “to do justly.” “To do justly” refers to our ethical response to other people. To “do justly” there must be a standard for what is just and what is unjust. Some conduct is right and some isn’t.

A new virile virus has been loosed in our culture under the guise of a new virtue. Because of its rapidly increasing influence it needs to be reexamined. It is called tolerance.

For generations people have espoused tolerance. The definition normally given is: “the disposition to be patient toward those whose opinions or practices differ from our own…”

That is now called “negative tolerance.”

Positive tolerance is defined as: “every single individual’s beliefs, values, lifestyle, and truth claims are equal.”  That’s positive tolerance. It is broadly advocated.

If that is true then the door to the jail cell of the Unabomber, Ted Kazinski, should be opened and he set free. Timothy McVey, your beliefs that prompted a lifestyle that blew up the building in Oklahoma is acceptable. You can go free.

Positive tolerance has replaced the virtue of justice.  Positive tolerance and justice cannot co-exist. They are mutually exclusive.

An advocate of positive tolerance defines for him or her self truth. One opinion is as good as another. Likewise one statement is as good as another. Such a person can state as true what facts reveal as not being true and still say, “I did not lie.” If there are no absolutes there is no truth and no falsehood. In the mind of such a person whatever they say is true.

This time in history is now being called the postmodern era. It is reshaping cultures’ concepts of truth. Lying is impossible since it presupposes objective reality. To the postmodern mind there is no objective truth. Truth is subject. That is, what I as the subject define it as.  Such a person can say, “I did not tell him to lie” becomes a “true” statement because lies don’t exist.  To such a mentality words don’t have a fixed meaning. They mean what the user wants them to mean at the moment. An interpretation may be different from an interpretation tomorrow.

God has expressed His desire for us: “Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, And in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom”  (Psalm 51:6).

Our value-free, morally neutral, education opens the door for sources in Hollywood, Madison Avenue, and yes, Nashville to bombard young minds with thousands of hours of sounds and images that glamorize immorality and mock Biblical values.

Remember you are “to do justly” in your response to people.