Explaining Godly Morality To Your Kids
There is an aspect of Christian thought that falls into the moral philosophy category that all children should know.
I know when I use words like “moral philosophy,” some readers might began to fall asleep. Such a phrase can sound like a discussion reserved for academics. However, this topic is rather easy and exceedingly important.
There are ways of thinking about what is right and wrong that is different than what the Bible teaches. For example the current mainstream way the world views morality is through a lens called moral relativism. This means that they believe right and wrong can differ from person to person. It’s all based upon emotion and if it feels good it must be good.
We say things like, “to each their own” or “as long as they aren’t hurting anyone who cares?” The reason this view is so popular is because it makes everyone his or her own judge of what is right and wrong. Most people believe they are a good person, so it makes sense for them to have a morality that always reaffirms that.
There is a big problem with this view, though, and teaching it to your children hinders them to see the value of believing in God. If morality is relative then nothing is really evil.
Each society would be free to invent whatever rules they want. If enough people deem something to be good, an entire country could justify doing evil simply by redefining what is right and wrong.
This is exactly what happened in Germany under Nazi rule. Good was redefined by those in power to such a degree that the murder of Jews was considered a morally good thing.
When the Nazi soldiers who operated the concentration camps were brought before the world court, they appealed to moral relativism. They claimed that it was okay, according to the rules their society had constructed, and just because our group disagreed with their group did not make their actions evil.
This should really help you understand the problems with moral relativism. We responded by reminding them that there is a rule of law above man’s, and because we rejected moral relativism, we could punish those who committed those horrendous crimes.
Though our world might call certain things good or bad, they are only good or bad at this current time and are subject to change rather quickly. We have seen just how fast morality can change in the last 50 years. What was acceptable on television and in the bedroom has totally been redefined by a world with no compass to guide these changes other than the feelings of those in charge.
This is why it is important to give your kids the gift of understanding biblical morality. We are not slaves to our impulses and emotions. We have something outside ourselves that guides and directs us. We don’t have to try to keep up with an ever-changing world and the new rules it invents. We can know for certain what is good and what is evil because God has clearly communicated it to us.
The way I explain this to young kids is to ask some basic questions. Is it wrong to steal? Did you know some people like to steal? They find it exciting and think the world owes them something, so they don’t believe it is wrong.
If someone likes to steal is it still wrong? Of course it is, because our feelings don’t determine truth. Sometimes you are going to feel like something is good and true, but we must always test it according to what God has said so we don’t make the same mistake as those who think it is okay to steal.