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Follow the Rules

Follow the Rules

Gale A. Richards

Retired Pastor

Imagine a baseball game where each team gets to decide the rules they want to follow and which they don’t. Also, each team gets to make up a few of their own rules as the game goes along. In addition, suppose the individual players on each team get to pick out some special rules for themselves. Finally, to make sure all of these confusing, crisscross rules are being followed, each team and player gets to have personal umpires. The result would certainly be disorganized and chaotic.

Umpires and players would be arguing with each other constantly. Everybody would believe that what was best for them personally was obviously the best thing to do, and to heck with what those other people think.

This behavior is called situational morality. It is “situational” because there are no absolute values of right or wrong. Everything is judged on the moment. The situation, and how the people involved feel about it at that time. It is the old “if it feels good, do it” philosophy.

Situational morality denies the existence of any superior moral authority. Each person considers themselves the best judge of what is right for them and everyone else has to work around it. In this philosophy, everyone lives their life according to their own personal rules and desires. The result is a life filled with the same sort of chaos that would have filled the baseball game described above.

Our society today is caught up in this philosophy. Codes of conduct and morals that have stood solid for hundreds or thousands of years are being tossed aside based on little more than emotional whims. Beliefs about marriage, family lifestyle, children, individual rights, respect for authority and more are being placed on the chopping block where the society’s foundational timbers are being turned into splinters.

Just as in that ballgame, there are arguments and disagreements. Everyone has their own umpire to back up their side, only in this case the umpires are lawyers and judges who make pronouncements and decisions and hurl anger words at one another.

What is needed is an umpire for the umpires, an ultimate umpire with real authority.

There is such an authority. That authority is God. God created absolute values of right and wrong in the very beginning. And from the time of creation, wrong living has been unhealthy and chaotic. True, you can live that way if you want. But someday you will have to answer to God’s ultimate authority. Wouldn’t it be better, healthier, and happier to live according to His plan all along?

The Bible tells us that there will always be those who rebel against God’s plan. However, those who live in partnership with God really do have more fully satisfying lives. If your life feels chaotic and just doesn’t make sense, turn it all over to God. Trust Him. What do you have to lose. Besides the chaos?

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