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What the Bible Says About Situation Ethics

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TEXT: Judges 21:25

ETS: Everyone in Israel lived according to his own desires.

ESS: Situation ethics is not God’s way for us to live.

OSS: Believers will repent of living by situation ethics and return to God’s way.

PQ: What does the Bible say about living “my way”?

UW: Facts

TOPIC: “The Bible’s Answer To Situation Ethics”


A-    Popular song of yesteryear…”I did it my way”

B-    Today’s society seems to live by the same philosophy.

Notice what the Bible says about this issue….


A.       Situation ethics is not a new phenomenon.

1.       Israel in the days of the Judges lived it out (text; 17:6).

a.        This is the practice of situation ethics pure and simple.

b.      The results were devastating for Israel.

1.)    Continual wandering from fellowship with God.

2.)    Judgment continually fell upon the nation.

B.       Situation ethics is the prevailing view in America today.

1.      There is a desire to throw off all restraints.

a.       The ACLU is fighting any moral conscience in this nation.

b.      All references to Judeo-Christian values are being removed from government, business, and education.

c.       The homosexual activist groups are pursuing recognition as “normal”.

2.      The desire to decide what is right and wrong based upon feelings and circumstances.

a.       In the World:

1.)          People want to decide what is right or wrong sexually based on consent and feelings.

2.)          Businesses are governed only by the profit margin. Any practice that leads to that is acceptable (Enron, Anderson, and others).

C.       What does the Bible say? (Deut. 12:8).

1.      We cannot walk in the artificial light of human understanding.

2.      The guidelines for living are found in God’s Word.


A.      False religions that lead men to Hell (Judges 6:25-31).

1.      Cult growth is occurring at an astounding rate.

a.       Mormons

b.      Jehovah’s Witnesses

c.       Christian Science

2.      Religions of men that are producing catastrophic results:

a.       Islam

b.      Satanism

B.       Rejection of God’s moral laws wreaks havoc in society (Judges 19:20-30).

1.      Physical diseases that are at epidemic proportions.

a.       AIDS

b.      Venereal Diseases

2.       Physical and sexual abuse increasing exponentially.

a.       Sexual abuse rose over 200% in the Lafayette area last year.

b.      Physical abuse is affecting myriads of women and children.

3.      Destruction of family relationships and the terrible consequences that follow:

a.       Divorce is at its highest rate ever.

1.)          60% of first marriages end in divorce.

b.      Children suffer the inevitable consequences:

1.)          No parental supervision opens the door for trouble.

2.)          Instability in the home produces psychological and emotional problems.

3.)          Rebelliousness that leads the child to reject all authority.

4.)          Difficulty for the child to understand the nature of a loving heavenly Father.

4.      Murder, violence, and theft are rampant in every city.


A.      Surrender to the only pathway of salvation (Acts 4:12; John 14:6).

1.      Recognize your need of a savior (Rom. 3:23; 6:23).

2.      Repent of your sinful lifestyle (Luke 13:3).

3.      Receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior (John 1:12).

B.       Surrender to the Lordship of Christ and control of the Spirit (Eph. 6:18; Rom. 12:1-2).

1.      Accept the fact of the Lordship of Christ for your own life.

2.      Yield to the controlling influence of the Holy Spirit.

3.      Obey all that He instructs you to do through His word.


Situation ethics provides only the shifting sands of human emotion. There is a solid basis upon which to decide any issue.

  A fivefold test that can be applied to any problem, purpose or plan.

(1) Is it according to the Word of God?( Matthew 4:4)

(2) Does it violate any principle of Scripture? (Matthew 15:3; Mark 7:7)

(3) Can I do it to the glory of God? (1 Cor. 10:31)

(4) Can I ask God's blessings on it? (Colossians 3:17)

(5) Would I like to be found doing this thing, or be in this place if the Lord Jesus were to come? (Matt. 24:42-46).

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