Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Principles for Godly decision making

Romans 14:19 then we pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another.

What happens when you are faced with a decision that might be considered by some to be a so-called "grey area"?  Now even though I firmly believe in moral absolutes (there being a system of right and wrong that is the same no matter where you are), there can be those situations that many would say are subject for debate.  Debatable areas - such as "Whom should I marry?" or "What school should I attend?" are areas the we need insight from God's word in knowing what to do. 

In the next several blogs I want to point the reader to scriptures that can greatly aid in making decisions that might not always seem obvious.  Whenever we apply scripture, the best method is to discover what we call "principles".  Principles are simply those universal standards that can be readily applied to specific situations.  

In the above text we discover our first pricinple for Godly decision making:

Will this decision build up or tear down others 

Often when we are faced with decisions, we will usually asked: "How will this affect me".  The better starting place, according to this text, should be -- "How will this decision impact others?"  If we aim to make our decisions on the building up of others in Christ, or for the sake of promoting the peace of God in a given situation, this pricinple will helps us sort out the lesser alternatives.

Paul even uses a specific example - what many consider to be a "debateable area" - namely alcohol consumption.  He writes -"It is good not to eat meat or to drink wine, or to do anything by which your brother stumbles."  Will taking that drink lead to a tearing down or building up of others?  Willl it promote more or lesser harmony in my home.  Then in a more personal application - will drinking alcohol or eating certain food help my body or hurt it.  WIll I be left with a clearer mind or a more cloud one?

What we have just done is take a general principle and apply it directly to a specific situation.  According to scripture - it would be far better to abstain, since the outcome will lead to a lesser building up and a lesser promotion of harmony. 

In tomorrow's blog we will consider another passage that gives us further principles for guiding us in our daily decision making. 

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