Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbour as yourself” Matt 22:37,38
“What’s right for you may not be right for me, what’s wrong for you may not be wrong for me” said Sue, glaring at her mother. Since she started to take drugs, Sue and her mother had argued. “Its my life, I’ll do what I like, and I don’t need you to tell me what’s right for me.”
It’s easy to side with the mother. But who’s to say what’s right or wrong?
Everyone has some standards. Most societies condemn murder for example. But who says murder is wrong? Is it simply that we don’t want others to hurt us, and extend this principal to apply to others? Do we say Sue is wrong because we can see the danger, and she can’t?
The bible says that God has planted in our hearts a knowledge of what’s right and wrong. Its called a conscience – like a smoke detector which goes off in the presence of evil. Because God has made us to be like Him, in that we are moral beings. We recognise evil.
More importantly, God has established right and wrong according to His character. Since God is good, he wants us to do good things. Since God cares for people, he has built into us a care for others. Since God hates murder, he has given us this same hatred.
Trouble is, none of us can live up to God’s standards. In fact, we can’t even live up to our own. No one is as kind and loving of others as they would like, no one is immune from bad mouthing another, or at least silently judging others. We may not murder, but we assassinate another’s character, slay them with our thoughts or words. Worse still, we treat God as if He doesn’t matter. We haven’t loved God nor our neighbour perfectly.
The bible calls this sin. A little word, with big consequences. God will not ignore sin, any more than a judge on earth will excuse a criminal. God is a judge, and will overthrow all evil. The bible calls this “judgement”. It’s the fate of us all.
Unless one trusts in Jesus. Jesus alone has perfectly obeyed his conscious. He alone has perfectly kept every standard, every law of God. No one else in human history has come close.
If one trust in Jesus to forgive them, He promises to wipe their slate clean. We stand accepted before God because Jesus has cleansed us. And more: He, or credits His perfect law keeping to our account. Its like putting on a new coat – the coat of Christ’s righteousness.
If we accept Jesus as our God and Saviour, and ask for His forgiveness, He promises to give us eternal life. If we reject Him, we face His judgement.