Bending the Rules
Bible Reading: Psalm 9:7-10
The Lord reigns forever, executing judgment from his throne. He will judge the world with justice and rule the nations with fairness. Psalm 9:7-8
Everyone stares when Caroline walks into the party. Her new outfit looks gorgeous, incredibly stylish-and very expensive.
“Go ahead,” Caroline says to Mandi. “Ask me where I got it.”
Mandi looks stumped.
“It’s from that new store uptown,” Caroline says, smiling. “Ask me how much I paid.” Mandi shrugs.
“It was free.” Caroline winks. “I took it into the dressing room and put my own clothes on over it. Then I just walked out of the store. It’s stunning, isn’t it?”
“It’s beautiful,” Mandi agrees. “But, Caroline, it’s not yours!”
“That’s so judgmental,” Caroline protests. “I don’t think what I did was wrong. I needed a new outfit, and the store was charging too much.”
Thieves don’t like being told that stealing is wrong. Bullies don’t enjoy hearing that beating people up is bad. People who abuse drugs or alcohol rebel when they are confronted with the hurt they cause themselves and others. People have always wanted others to leave them alone to do the wrong thing.
But these days there’s a wild new view of right and wrong floating around. It says that we can each act like Caroline, making up our own rules about right and wrong. It claims we should always accept people’s actions, no matter how sinful they are.
That’s like saying you should let someone come up and punch you in the nose-just because that person says it’s okay.
God’s commands are for everyone-all people, at all times, and in all places. When we abandon what God says is right, we have a big problem. God is the only Perfect One. He’s the only one capable of correctly judging right from wrong. It’s silly to applaud another person’s bad actions when they clearly violate God’s wise rules.
Sometimes the best way you can love a friend is by not letting the wrong she’s doing slide by. You can accept her-but you can also warn her that how she’s acting is wrong. God cares too much to let bad stuff go on!
TALK: How would you explain right and wrong to a friend who thinks everything she does is okay?
PRAY: God, thank you that you love us enough to tell us when we do wrong. Help us to know how to talk to friends whose behavior is hurting them.
ACT: Make a sign listing three ways you can confront someone who is doing wrong, without being rude or mean. Start it with, “When someone is doing wrong, we will…”