A Moral Compass – Part 1

compass2The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) have finally agreed to allow the admittance of homosexual boys into its membership.

Does this come as a surprise to anyone? Will it also be a surprise when the leaders are allowed to be openly gay? One would have to be fairly naive to reject that it is a distinct possibility.

As I read a news update about this decision, I thought, “Why doesn’t someone start a rival to BSA that stands on the correct side of issues of right and wrong?” Then I read an article from Fox News stating that some folks are talking about doing just that. I say, “Why not?” The BSA has been an upstanding organization for a long time and has taught some great lessons to the boys of America, but maybe the time has come for its demise. When I have something that no longer works right, what do I do? I get rid of it and replace it with something that does the job.

This whole fiasco got me to thinking back about a message I preached last year that I called “A Moral Compass.” The motivation behind it was the declaration of President Obama that he is in support of homosexual marriage. That infuriated me, not because I am a “homophobic” but because we need to take a stand against sin. Over and over I hear even from Christians that we need to stand for “traditional marriage.” I think that comment misses the mark by a long shot.

Because I think everyone needs to hear the truth about this subject, I have decided to post this message in my blog. I will do it in four sections, and I hope that you will read it and share it with your friends.

For thousands of years, mankind has relied heavily on a very simple piece of equipment, one that does not require batteries or software. The Chinese happened upon the discovery that a piece of magnetic iron ore called lodestone would always point north and south while floating in water. It was easy to see how this could become very handy in navigation. Eventually this phenomenon was explained when the magnetic north pole was discovered, and the compass was developed.

The beauty of a compass is that as long as there are no other magnetic fields in the way, it will always point toward the north. But what if you want to go west? That is no problem, because as long as you know where the north is, you can determine every other direction.

Studies show if you ever get lost in a forest you will eventually walk in a big circle. You cannot trust your feelings—you have to trust something outside of yourself. In testing this theory, the participants did better when they could at least see the sun or the moon. An inner sense of direction will fail you most of the time. Therefore, an external tool such as a compass is necessary. When you need direction, you must learn to trust in the compass rather than your own feelings.

What we need to do is to establish a compass to determine what is right and wrong. Although this can be applied to many areas, we will consider primarily this issue of homosexuality. Although I may be accused of infringing on politics, this is not a political issue. Like so many other subjects, it is a matter of right and wrong.

In the discussion over gay marriage, we need to know where we stand. Should it be rejected outright? Would it be better to just overlook it thinking that what others do has no effect on us? Or, like we see happening with so many of our leaders, should we accept it wholeheartedly?

The cacophony of voices on this subject is deafening. Governmental leaders have opinions, bloggers have opinions, and pastors do not even see eye to eye on the matter. How do we know who is right? Those who support a new redefinition of marriage believe that the world has progressed into a higher understanding that allows for this acceptance. Those who support “traditional” marriage are then deemed the unenlightened “old fogeys” who are against progress.

So, where do we stand? There is only one way to know, and that is to consult our moral compass. Who or what decides what is right or wrong? Is tradition the ultimate arbitrator of right? Or should we determine our morals based on public acceptance?

In the next three parts, we will look at how many people make decisions. Some make them based on acceptance, some on preference, and some on knowledge. Stay tuned as we look at each of these to help us trudge through this swampland of conflicting opinions.

Click here for part 2

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