Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

How Christians decide what is right - information. When Christians have to make Moral choices – where there is a right decision that could be also seen.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "How Christians decide what is right - information. When Christians have to make Moral choices – where there is a right decision that could be also seen."— Presentation transcript:

1 How Christians decide what is right - information. When Christians have to make Moral choices – where there is a right decision that could be also seen as wrong - they may turn to one of four ‘authorities’.

2 The Bible For some Christians this is the direct word of God, for others it is inspired by God, therefore Christians can read it to find out what God wants. It contains messages that have come directly from God It gives examples of how to behave It tells the story of the life of Jesus, the best example of how a Christian should live (What Did Jesus Do? {WDJD}) It tells of great moments in human understanding of God’s wishes like the parables and the Sermon on the Mount. It has the basic rules that man should follow, the Decalogue. Great Christian leaders like St Peter, St Paul, St John and St James have written parts of it BUT not all Christians agree on how far the Bible is God’s direct word, so some may refer to it as the only authority, while others may use the Church to help them work out what is the best thing to do.

3 The Church -some Christians elect a council of leaders to make decisions based on their knowledge of the Bible and their experience. Others like the Roman Catholics elect one leader (The Pope) who has the best understanding of the teachings and a council of Bishops, they form a group called the Magisterium that can work out the best thing to do in difficult situations. This means that the Church acts as a reference point and can respond to questions not raised in the Bible like Genetic Engineering They believe God’s voice is still present on the Earth, but the Bible is a complete document, so He must be talking to us through the Church. The Church is able to help people by giving a single ‘correct’ view or response to a question, not leaving it up to individual Christians to work out their own answers. The leaders are trusted advisors who want people to bond with God, so they will give the best possible advice. The Church is considered the Body of Christ, or how Jesus Christ works in the world. As Christ’s body, the Church must have authority.

4 The Role of Conscience Christians recognise that all people have a conscience, and a person’s conscience can be their own personal guide on making the right moral choice. St Paul and St Thomas Aquinas said that conscience should be the final part in decision making for Christians, after referring to the Bible and the Church. A person’s conscience should guide them to doing the right thing. In Hebrews 13:18 Christians are encouraged to follow their conscience “We are sure that we have a clear conscience and a desire to live honourably.” The Catholic Church states “A human being must always obey the certain judgement of his conscience.” Some Christians would say this is ‘God’s voice’ inside their head. BUT the conscience can be wrong, some people have claimed that their conscience told them to do something which most people would see as morally wrong eg. Killing doctors who perform abortions. The Catholic Church warns that “the conscience makes erroneous judgements”. So Christians need to be cautious.

5 Situation Ethics –the most loving thing This gives some flexibility to the decisions a Christian may make, that they can not get from the Bible or the Church. E.g. The Bible says that it is wrong to kill, Church teaching would also generally say it is wrong to kill, however, if the only way to stop a person from shooting a mass of innocent people was to push him off a cliff, situation ethics would say you were right. Again the Bible and Church say that stealing is wrong, but if a person plans to use a tank to destroy a downtown shopping area, and you can move the tank the night before his plan, situation ethics would say that you were doing the most loving thing. Jesus himself said that the most important commandment after loving God, was to ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ Therefore, if you take an action that has the intention of loving your neighbour you are doing what Jesus approved of. What would Jesus Do (WWJD) BUT some say this is wrong because God gave us his own rules of right and wrong in the Bible, the Church can judge better than an individual and you can’t know what the result of your action will be.


Download ppt "How Christians decide what is right - information. When Christians have to make Moral choices – where there is a right decision that could be also seen."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google