Good for Goose and Gander; One and All?

There is an old proverb that says: “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander! The meaning is: ‘What is good for a woman is equally good for a man.’ The principle is: What is good for one type is equally good for another type, despite any irrelevant differences between the types. Well, we live in a culture and society wherein it seems the rights of the individual are being promoted and respected over the good of the group, even if those rights are detrimental to the group of which the individual is a member.

I’ve been thinking about something that I am trying to ‘flesh-out’ to see if it is a universally applicable principle in view of the insistence of individuals to demand the right to express themselves, even if their expressions are contrary and harmful to the group. Here’s the principle I’ve been investigating: ‘If it is good or right for one or some; it should be good or right for all!’ Now, let’s see how that works with some of the issues that are being debated in our society today.

Let’s start with racism. If it is good or right for one or some people to be racist; it should be good or right for all people to be racist! But, what kind of world would it be if everybody was a racist? Would it be a world that anyone would want to live in? I don’t think so! I think it would be Hell! If everybody thought and acted like they were better or more privileged than everybody else, we would have the recipe for a chaotic and dangerous society!

And speaking of danger: What would society look like if it was good and right for everyone to own and carry guns? Well, we really don’t have to imagine what it would look like; we’ve already been there and done that: It was the era of the wild, wild west! You can see milder versions of what that was like by looking at old episodes of Gun-smoke, Rifleman, and Bonanza! As I am typing this post, I am recalling news reports of shoot-outs between gang members and law enforcement that rival and surpass the famous gun fight at the OK Corral!

At the risk of being labelled hateful and insensitive, I dare bring up the issue of homosexuality! If it is good and right for one or some people to be homosexual; it should be good and right for everybody to be homosexual. But what would our world look like if everyone was a practicing homosexual? In fact, perhaps an even greater question is: Would there be a world at all? It takes a man and a woman to have a baby. Would we really be at ease and satisfied with a generation of test-tube babies; all produced by artificial insemination? I don’t think we would!

What about criminal activity? If it is right and good for one or some people to be crooks, then it is good and right for all people to be crooks! But what kind of world would it be if everybody was a crook? If everyone was a liar, a thief, a deceiver, a devious person, a pervert, or whatever? Do you see my point?

The point is this: Whether we like it or not, there are moral principles and guidelines that have been instituted by a Higher Power! Man, in his arrogance, likes to think of himself as being his own god! But, if everybody was their own god; society would break down into chaos! (By the way; since we have thrown off the yoke of the true God, this is exactly where we are headed!) Just because you may not like or agree with these moral principles, that doesn’t exempt you from their jurisdiction! People think it is OK to break God’s laws, but in the final analysis; they really don’t just break the law; the law breaks them! Our world is filled with people who are broken, disconnected and lost because of their attempt to be their own god! In the final analysis: What’s good for the goose may or may not be good for the gander, but it is not the right of the goose or the gander to decide what that ‘good’ is! That right is reserved only for the Creator of the goose and the gander! The Creator of the goose and the gander knows that there are some things that are good for the goose and the gander, but there are also some things that are good for the goose but not for the gander!

Morality Without God

moral compassThere is an interesting phenomenon occurring in our culture today. People want to dismiss the notion of a supreme authoritative God from the moral landscape yet they insist on still using moralistic terms such as “right” and “wrong.” But how can there be right and wrong when there is no ultimate moral authority? Who decides what is right and what is wrong? Is the question decided by a majority vote or common consensus? The problem with such a notion is that what is deemed as “right” is constantly changing according to the current majority and the will of the majority is too often subject to influence of a vocal minority.

Most people are familiar with the first part of the KJV’s rendition of Proverbs 29:18 which says: “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” However, that is not the complete thought of the verse. The latter part of the verse says: “But he that keepeth the law, happy is he.” Since this is Hebrew poetry, and the main device of Hebrew poetry is parallelism, the first and second sections are usually similar or they are in direct contrast to one another. The second part of the verse starts with a contrasting “but” which let us know that this is a case of contrast. The second part of the verse is a direct contrast or completely opposite of the first part of the verse.

Now this presents us with a problem because of the KJV’s translation of the Hebrew word: “hazon” to the English word: “vision.” In modern English, we normally associate the word “vision” with sight or the setting of goals. But is that the meaning of the word in this verse? Was that the original meaning the author wanted to convey when this text was first written? In view of the contrast in the latter part of the verse, I don’t think it was.

One other possible translation of the Hebrew word, “hazon” is; “word of revelation.” What is “word of revelation?” It is the law or the word of God! Now, while “vision” as we commonly use it is a valid application, I don’t think it was the original author’s intent. I think the original author intended to make a contrast between people perishing who were without the law or the word of God and people blessed (happy) because they keep, that is obey, the law (word of God).

As we conclude, we must also note that the Hebrew word that is translated as “perish” actually means; “let free, make someone go out of control, allow to run wild.” Do you see that? This verse that we have traditionally used to encourage goal-setting and success, actually reveals the cause of the sad state of morality in America today! When people seek to have a righteous morality without a righteous God, the inevitable result is moral chaos! I think the New Living Translation is closer to the original truth the author wanted to convey: “When people do not accept divine guidance, they run wild. But whoever obeys the law is joyful.”

The only solution to our social and moral dilemma today is that we turn back and submit to the Divine authority of God and acknowledge that the LORD, He is God! It is He that hath made us and not we ourselves!

The Right To Be Right

right wrong signIn our world today it seems as though the right to be right is being sacrificed on the altar of political correctness! The needle of the moral compass has been broken and our world is teetering upon the jagged rocks of moral destruction. Whatever happen to the days when right was right and wrong was wrong? In those days, people who were wrong didn’t try to persuade people who were right that their wrong was right. They didn’t try to call their wrong right and the people who were right respected their right to be wrong!

But today, it seems as though no one wants to acknowledge they are wrong, even to the extent of attempting to force those who are right into accepting their wrong as right! But common sense logic dictates that if A is one way and B is another way, then A and B can’t be the same way! If A is going in one direction and B is going in the opposite direction, then A and B can’t be going in the same direction! Therefore if A is right and B is wrong, then logic dictates that A and B can’t both be right!

If we are to value the word of the ONE who determines what is right and what is wrong, then our society stands under judgment! In Isaiah 5:20-21, the Prophet declares: “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!” (KJV) That is where we are today! We’re like kids playing on the playground who, because they don’t like the rules of the game, change the rules of the game. By the way, when you change the rules of the game from the original rules, you have in essence, created an entirely different game!

What am I saying? Well, the historical interpretation of the Judeo-Christian faith seems to suggest that a Supreme God created this world and everything within it, including humanity. The biblical record presents marriage as a God-ordained institution between a man and a woman. Therefore, according to the ONE who wrote the rule-book of marriage, any other union is not a marriage at all! Now, before anyone who may espouse same-sex marriage accuse me of being homophobic or insensitive, remember, I didn’t make the rules and neither did any of us! And just because we don’t like the rules, that doesn’t give us the right to change the rules!

The bottom line is this: In spite of modern society’s insistence to the contrary; there are moral absolutes! There is such a thing as right and wrong! However, being right or being wrong doesn’t make you any more or any less than anyone else. The Bible declares that we all have issues and if we are to be saved, it will be only by God’s grace and not by our works. But God’s grace is available to us only if we are willing to acknowledge our need for it. As long as we insist that our wrong (whatever it is) is right, we are estranged from grace. The first step to a cure of any disease is the acknowledgment and recognition of the disease. If you are sick, merely insisting that you are well and denying that you are sick will not make you well! It’s time to stop the moral nonsense! Right is right and wrong is wrong and calling wrong right does not make wrong right! We are all free moral agents and that means that those who are wrong have a right to be wrong and those who are right have a right to be right without being vilified by those who are wrong who insist that their wrong is right!