ProLifeCorner.com- by Larry Plachno
Recent surveys indicate that many if not most Americans are unhappy with the directions their country is taking. More and more people are asking why? Those doing the research are suggesting that we have caused most of our own problems by turning away from basic Christianity.
We have turned our back on God by giving up on good and evil while replacing them with relativism. We have made a mockery of Jesus Christ’s suffering and death by replacing sin with selfishness. And, we have ceased to be concerned for others and have replaced responsibilities with rights. In short, we have moved away from the moral guidance of God, church, husbands and fathers.
It does not take much thought to define what a Christian is and what is expected of them. Since God sent His Son to suffer and die to atone for our sins it tells us two things. The first is that God wants us to know that good and evil do exist are a primary concern. The second is a little more sobering because it means that some atonement is required for sin and doing evil.
Jesus Christ gave us two rules to live by. One is love of God and the other is love of neighbor. We love God by judging our actions and decisions as to whether they are good or evil. We are a follower of Jesus Christ when good means what is best for other people and society. Hence, the dictionary definition of a Christian is someone who has a deep concern for other people.
This manifests itself in our actions and decisions. When faced with an action or decision that could impact other people and society, we have two choices. We can be unselfish and do what is best for other people and society. Or, we can do what we want regardless of whom we hurt. It does not take much thought to figure out which is the Christian position.
But, are weactually keeping the Christian principles? What is interesting is that many Americans, even those who call themselves Christians, have a habit of agreeing that other people need to judge their actions as to whether they are good or evil but they themselves have a right to do what they want. Of course, those “other” people also think that they have a right to set Christianity aside and do what they want. Hence, our society is having problems because good and evil is something that applies to others but notto us.
What is interesting is that the basic principles of Christianity are not necessary religious. Modern computer-generated reports and statistics looking at causes of social problems echo and endorse the basic teachings of Jesus Christ. This means that Jesus Christ was right all along when he told us to work with others and put others first.
The reason for this is because society is like a team. When we work together for common goals, we all come out ahead. However, when we areselfish and do what we want, we have problems. This is what Jesus Christ was trying to teach us.
This need to work together for the good of society and other people goes beyond religion. Even atheists understand the value of working together for common goals. A look into history will tell you that people of various faiths including deists and atheists founded America. However, what made America great is that most of them embraced basic Christian principles and did what was best for others and their country, not what they wanted. It was only when people began to set aside good and evil and become selfish that our social problems began to increase.
The big question is where do each of us stand today on basic Christian principles? Do we judge our actions and decisions as to whether they are good or evil, or have we turned our back on God and replaced good and evil with relativism? Do we do what is best for other people and society, or have we made a mockery of Christ’s suffering and death by replacing sin with selfishness?
What is probably a good place to start is taking a look at Catholic Church confessionals. The numbers of people going to the Sacrament of Reconciliation are down considerably from past decades. This is obvious proof that we have turned our backs on basic Christian principles and no longer worry about good and evil. Can we still call ourselves Christians if we no longer judge our actions as good or evil?
Participation at Christian churches is also down, again showing a movement away from basic Christian principles. However, in this case our pastors and religious leaders are also to blame because many of them avoid talking about good and evil for fear of offending someone. For example, when is the last time you heard a fire and brimstonehomily about the evils of divorce and single parenting? The problem with this is that our pastors and religious leaders are teaching their parishioners that we can pick and choose. Good and evil only exists for some people and not for others, or only exists in some places and not other places.
We could go on to other actions and decisions but I would like to concentrate on traditional marriage. Why marriage? Because anyone who has done the research will tell you that marriage is almost magical because it shows up as being the most important factor in eliminating many of our major social problems. It comes across as the basic building block of society where mothers, fathers and children learn to work together for the good of their family.
In recent monthsmany of our religious leaders are taking an increased interest in traditional marriage because of its positive impact on society and in reducing social problems. On April 2, 2014, Pope Francis praised marriage at his weekly audience. Jesus Christ blessedmarriage with his first public miracle at the Wedding Feast at Cana.
Do you think that traditional marriage is good or evil for society? Here are some thoughts and statistics that may help you decide. Many of these are simply logical.
• Abortion – What is your position on abortion? Statistically, those people who are pro-choice on marriage are more likely to be pro-choice on abortion. One recent report indicates that 80 percent of women seeking an abortion are not married. Hence, encouraging traditional marriage will decrease the number of abortions.
• Crime – Married people are much less likely to commit crimes and less likely to be the victim of crimes. The logic is inescapable. A man at home changing the diaper of his baby daughter is much less likely to get into trouble that a man at a bar looking for a one night stand. If you want to reduce crime then increase marriage.
• Poverty – Married people are statistically less likely to live in poverty than single people. The logic is that two people dobetter than one in avoiding poverty. Again, if you want to reduce poverty then increase marriage.
• Homelessness – It is only expected that married people are less likely to be homeless than singlepeople. Again, the logic is that two people are better than one in avoiding homelessness. As with poverty, people who work together in marriage come out ahead. If you want to reduce homelessness then increase marriage.
• Raising Children – Mothers who are pro-choice on marriage are statistically more likely to raise children who are pro-choice on crime. Controlling for socioeconomic status, race and place of residence, the strongest predictor of whether a person will end up in prison is being raised by asingle mother. Statistics show that single mothers raised more than 70 percent of juvenile murderers, pregnant teenagers, high school dropouts, teen suicides, runaways and juvenile delinquents.
• Bigger Government – It is interesting that the statisticstend to show that as we moved away from marriage and the family wage, government expanded to take the place of traditional marriage and the traditional family. In many situations the government has become a pseudo husband and a pseudo father and does a rotten job of both. If you want to reduce big government, then increase traditional marriage.
• The Family Wage – What should be the Christian position on encouraging or discouraging the family wage? Since having a family wage increases marriage it also decreases crime, poverty, homelessness, government and juvenile delinquency. It is very obvious where Christians should stand, but do they?
Are you unhappy with the directions our country has taken?Would you like to turn things around? Then be a real Christian and judge your actions and decisions as to whether they are good or evil. Make a point of working with others and doing what is best for other people and society. This includes supporting traditional marriage as one of the best things for our society.
WhenJesus Christ admonished us to love our neighbor, he did not provide a list of exceptions . . . at least not in my Bible. Hence we are faced with a very important question. Should each of usbe a true Christian and judge all of our actions and decisions as to whether they are good or evil for other people and society? If yes, then do we consider traditional marriage and the family wage good or evil? If no, then don’t worry about murder, abortion, crime, poverty, homelessness, selling drugs to kids and shooting guns in schools.
Editors Note: Larry Plachno is a successful businessman, publisher, author, and composer of an incalculable number of articles relating to family, life issues and associated problems and solutions. This barely scratches the surface of what Larry really is. His love of God, family and country is inspiring.
For years now Larry has shared his writings with us here at the ProLifeCorner and we are truly humbled by his generosity.
Larry is also an ardent blogger and is a prolific writer. You can follow his work at: www.unselfish.org