I have recently been reading a book entitled “Get Real” by Glenn Colley and Chuck Webster. In this book one chapter in particular stuck out at me. This chapter is entitled “How Do I Know What’s Right?” I have always found it humbling whenever someone preaches on a topic in a way that I have never thought about before. It’s like, just when I thought I knew everything there was to know about the Bible and now that I have heard this guy preach, a million unanswered questions just popped up in my head. Maybe in the past some of these questions were, to smoke or not to smoke? To drink or not to drink? What about just one drink and not even in public? Tongue rings, belly button rings, nose rings, or just earrings? Tattoos or not? How tight is too tight? How short is too short? “Going too far” is bad, but how “far” is “too” far? How many profanities make a movie or song bad?
Perhaps most importantly, where can we find the answers? Some people believe the Bible couldn’t possibly have the answers because it is hopelessly outdated. After all, how could something written before movies, cars, and the internet be relevant to us living in the third millennium since Jesus walked the Earth? Do you ever wonder if Jerusalem young adults were pressured to drink, smoke, or do some kind of drug? Did girls in Jericho make fun of other girls because their robes didn’t have the right fashion tag or brand? This “old book” couldn’t be relevant to us, right? Actually that is one of the beautiful aspects of the Word of God. Yes, the Bible was completed almost two thousand years ago, and it doesn’t specifically mention the struggles we might face today. That, however, does not make it irrelevant. The Bible would be taller than a four story building in thickness if God had chosen to include every specific practice of every age group of every time period. Rather, God gave us principles of Christ-like living. In 1st Corinthians 6:12 Paul says, “All things are lawful for me, but all things are NOT helpful”. In other words, Paul is saying that there are some things that aren’t inherently wrong, but they may have an impact on my relationship to Christ. 1st Peter 1:15 says, “but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in ALL your conduct”.
Simply enough, when we are deciding whether something is wrong or right, we need to ask ourselves these questions:
1. Will it help me please God and go to heaven?
2. Will it help people around me go to heaven?
3. Will it help my Christian example?
4. Will it bring glory to God?
5. Will it help me teach my friends/family about Christ?
If the answer to any of these is “no”, then say “no” to whatever it is you are considering. Keep your “conduct” pure before God and be an example to everyone that knows you.
Kurt Dauksch is currently a student at ETSU and is majoring in English. Kurt is also an active member of 708 Ministries and always available to help out in anyway possible. Kurt is from Elizabethton, Tennessee and attended Eliabethton High School.