Free Essay


In: Religion Topics

Submitted By vj4503
Words 5181
Pages 21








RLGN 5323



April 14, 2008

Table of Contents


Part I: Definition of Civil Disobedience………………………………………..….…..1

Part II: Definition of Christian Ethics…………..……………………………….……..1

Part III: Biblical and Historical Practice of Civic Responsibility.……………………..2

Part IV: The Rise of Political Power in the Church and the Struggles Associated…….7

Part V: The Necessity for Civil Disobedience..………………………………………..9

Part VI: What Difference Did the Civil Rights Struggle Make? ..................................12

INTRODUCTION This research will focus on the topic of “Civil Disobedience and its Relativity to Christian Ethics.” The research will address whether it is ever justifiable to disobey the laws of secular governments. In doing so, it will discuss the Doctrine of Civic Responsibility as it relates to Christian Ethics. Furthermore, Romans 13:1-7 will be referenced to provide additional insight into how the Church has historically responded to civil government’s demands on society. DEFINITION OF CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE What is civil disobedience? This is the term used when an action is taken against civil government as a result of a civil law or practice that is considered in direct conflict with God’s law of love. More will be discussed on this subject as it relates to Christian ethics.


What is Christian ethics? According to Stanley Grenz, “Ethics is the study of how humans ought to live as informed by the Bible and Christian convictions.”[1] Therefore, as discussed in class, “Christian ethics deals with oughtness—what a Christian ought to be (character) and do (conduct)—how to live and what to live for.”


What is the biblical and historical practice of civic responsibility? Until now, there has no reason been offered for Paul’s justification for writing Romans 13:1-7. One can only speculate on the reason for such strong guidance on submission, honour, and paying taxes to the pagan rulers. Perhaps Paul was thinking about the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, or maybe the public murder of Stephen the fearless deacon. If not these incidents, maybe he was reminded of his own ignorant persecution of the saints. No doubt, Paul was definitely aware of the problems that the Jews had with being taxed by the Roman government (Acts 5:37) (Luke 13:1). Being a “devout Jew” himself, Paul was fully aware of the hope that the Jews had that one day the Messiah would come and set them free from their oppressors. Afterall, the Jews considered themselves as the seed of Abraham, and by law were not to set anyone (none Jew) as king over them. Therefore, they very unwillingly bore the Roman rule and paid tribute to Caesar. Furthermore, the Gentile believers may have voiced their Christian liberty and felt freed from subjection to the pagan magistrates. Regardless of the circumstances, Paul certainly had enough reason to establish dialog to try and prevent a possible bloody revolution. The following provides additional support to this speculation:

In Paul’s care there was one immediate cause of his stressing of civil obedience. The Jews were notoriously rebellious. Palestine, especially Galilee, was constantly seething with insurrection. Above all there were the Zealots; they were convinced that there was no king for the Jews but God; and that no tribute must be paid to anyone except to God. Nor were they content with anything like a passive resistance. They believed that God would not be helping them unless they embarked on violent action to help themselves. Their aim was to make any civil government impossible. They were known as the dagger-bearers. They were fanatical nationalists sworn to terrorist methods. Not only did they use terrorism towards the Roman government; they also wrecked the houses and burned the crops and assassinated the families of their own fellow-Jews who paid tribute to the Roman government. In this Paul saw no point at all. It was, in fact, the direct negation of all Christian conduct. And yet, at least in one part of the nation, it was normal Jewish conduct. It may well be that Paul writes here with such inclusive definiteness because he wished to dissociate Christianity altogether from insurrectionist Judaism, and to make it clear that Christianity and good citizenship went necessarily hand in hand. [2]

Still, the Bible does not give exact reasons for Paul writing to the Christians at Rome to submit to the established government within the community. One can only speculate at this point; however, I found in my research that the doctrine of civic responsibility has been a real challenge for Christians. As I mentioned earlier, Roman Emperors were responsible for severe persecutions of the Saints. The following presents an example of such pains the Saints faced: No one seems to know exactly why, but Diocletian, two years before the end of his highly effective reign, suddenly ordered the most vicious of all persecutions of the Christians. For eighteen years Diocletian, although himself a convinced and practicing pagan, paid no attention to the growing Christian power. His court was full of Christian officials and his wife, Prisca, and his daughter, Valeria, were considered Christians. Impressive church buildings appeared in the principal cities of the empire, the largest in his capital of Nicomedia. Then, suddenly, the old emperor ordered his army purged of Christians. Imperial edicts followed, commanding officials to destroy church buildings, prohibit Christian worship, and burn the Scriptures. Bishops were rounded up wholesale, imprisoned, tortured, and many put to death, while the power of the imperial throne was turned loose to wipe out the rest of the Christian community in blood.[3]

Additionally, the Saints faced persecutions from their own leaders after the rise of the Christian Roman Empire. This was primarily due to differences in traditions of doctrine and practice. With such wicked rulers, one can easily justify not submitting to their government. Keeping this in mind, I will discuss how the Christian faith community has treated the doctrine of civic responsibility in the years up to 1900.

The grace of the gospel teaches us submission and quiet, where pride and the carnal mind only see causes for murmuring and discontent (Romans 8:1-4). Generally, rulers are not a terror to honest, quiet, and good subjects, but to evildoers. Such is the power of sin and corruption, that many will be kept back from crimes only by the fear of punishment. All smuggling, dealing in contraband goods, withholding or evading duties, is rebellion against the express command of God. Thus honest neighbors are robbed, who will have to pay the more; and the crimes of smugglers, and others who join with them, are encouraged. It is painful that some leaders of the gospel should “bow down” to such dishonest practices. As mentioned earlier, Christians have suffered because of unjust rulers or governments. The Apostle Paul ultimately was beheaded under Nero. He was judged because of righteousness, not wickedness. Are believers ever to disobey the law? The answer seems to be no, unless doing so would cause a believer to be disobedient to the word of God. In Mark 6:18, John the Baptist was told not to preach about sin and judgment. John’s response was to ignore the law and obey God. As a result, John was beheaded. When the three Hebrew boys were told to “fall down and worship” an image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up, they responded and said to the king “we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.” (Daniel 3:18 NIV) Therefore, one can see that if we obey the Lord when the law forbids us to do so, we may have to suffer the penalty for our disobedience to the law. In Acts 4:20, Peter and John preached the gospel and were brought before the council for doing so. In Acts 5:28-29, Peter and John were forbidden to preach once again. Peter responded by saying “We ought to obey God rather than men.” They were beaten, warned not to preach Christ, and then released. Paul and Silas were commanded to stop preaching the gospel. As a consequence of not doing so, both were imprisoned. We find in Acts 16:25, that they were found praying and singing unto God. Their punishment gave them opportunity to testify to the grace of God. Jesus said: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it.” As Christians, we have been called to walk fearless and suffer for the gospel if necessary. Historically, God has led His people in confronting evil. Even under severe persecution, Christianity has endured. The teachings of Jesus Christ have caused much conflict throughout history. For instance, “when Alexander died, Hildebrand was elected pope, although the order prescribed by the Second Lateran Council was reversed, for it was the people who demanded his election, and the cardinals who agreed.” Author, Justo L. Gonzalez, further added that Hildebrand “took the name of Gregory VII, and continued the work of reformation in which he had been engaged for years. . . .Gregory’s reforming zeal soon clashed with the interests of Emperor Henry IV.[4] One can conclude at this point that Christians have stood in unity in resisting any law that compelled them to worship anyone or anything, other than their God. However, there is another very sensitive issue among Christians—religious freedom! The threat to liberty in worship comes from the exercise of power. The ruler controls the education of its citizens and the laws of government. This is seen in the “divine rights of kings,” where the incumbent makes decisions involving life or death to those subject to his rule. History has certainly shown that power is a corrupting force when placed in human hands. The Bible clearly reveals the results of placing government control in the hands of one individual. King David, a man after God’s own heart (1 Sam. 13:14; Acts 13:22), abused his power and Israel experienced great calamity (2 Sam. 11–21). Because of such a threat, Christians have been engaged in warfare and much strife over government control. I offer the following comments to support this thought: The years following his escape from Saul saw David in the rather questionable position of being an ally to the Philistines while at the same time proclaiming his loyalty to his own people. His power base was Judah, whose rough terrain furnished an abundance of hiding places for his forces, which were continually being reinforced by people who were becoming disillusioned with Saul. [5]

Due to this and more, there are conflicting views held among the Christian community in regards to Christians serving in military service and politics. Author, H. Richard Nebuhr, expressed these thoughts: “The Mennonites have come to represent the attitude most purely, since they not only renounce all participation in politics and refuse to be drawn into military service.”[6]

RISE OF POLITICAL POWER IN THE CHURCH AND ASSOCIATED STRUGGLES To this point, this discussion has revealed how pagan rulers treated the church and the response of their subjects. Now, the focus will be on the rise of political power in the Church and the struggles associated with such authority. After Emperor Constantine established Christianity as the religion of Rome, the Church became a political power. Prior to 312, Christianity had been outlawed and persecuted. Suddenly, it was favored and nurtured by the hands of Constantine. However, Constantine ruled Christian bishops and demanded unconditional obedience to official pronouncements, even when they interfered with purely church matters. Prior to Constantine’s conversion, the church consisted of convinced believers. Now many came who were politically ambitious, religiously disinterested, and still half-rooted in paganism. “This threatened to produce not only shallowness and permeation by pagan superstitutions but also the secularization and misuse of religion for political purposes.” This “church-state” rule resulted in major problems for the Saints. The following is submitted for clarification: In the year 390 a charioteer in a Greek city was accused of homosexual practices. The governor of the area threw him into prison but did not count on the reaction of the people. With the chariot races about to begin, the people asked for the charioteer’s freedom. The governor refused. So the people rose in arms, murdered the governor, and freed their hero. Emperor Theodosius, then in Milan, was incensed. He ordered that the people be punished, so at another chariot race in the circus at Thessalonica the gates were closed and the soldiers of Theodosius were stationed at the entrances. At a signal they fell upon the people. In three hours 7,000 Thessalonians fell by the sword.[7]

As a result of this aftermath, the bishop in that area informed the emperor that he needed to repent and would be excommunicated from the church unless he did so. After repenting several instances, the emperor’s forgiveness was finally granted and accepted by the bishop. This bold gesture introduced a powerful new weapon (excommunication) that the church would use for many years in dealing with its subjects. This also led to the rise of the papacy as a powerful political and religious figure in society.
THE NECESSITY FOR CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE Is civil disobedience justified? During this modern era, the necessity for civil disobedience is certainly apparent. As mentioned earlier, civil disobedience is based upon the belief that individuals have the right to disobey the law under certain circumstances--specifically, when God’s moral law of love is in direct conflict with society’s rules and ethics. Several people come to mind in discussing this topic: Ms. Harriet Tubman, Ms. Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Ms Tubman (a devout Christian of the Methodist Church) escaped from “slavery in 1849, then returned to the South at least 19 times during the next 10 years to lead more than 300 blacks to freedom in the North.” [8] During that time, Ms Tubman was considered a criminal because of her actions. At first, one may be tempted to agree with such a verdict; however, careful examination of the scriptures would suggest otherwise. We must always remember that God’s higher law is more supreme to man’s law. Here is a scholarly comment from 1Peter 2:18-20: Peter addresses servants, using a less common word, oiketes. The term is nearly synonymous to doulos, the common New Testament word for servant, but oiketes suggests a nuance of service within a household. Both terms have also been translated slave, but the horrible degradation of slaves in 19th-century America gives the word slave a far worse connotation than is accurate for most of the society which Peter was writing. Although mistreatment of slaves could occur then too, it must be remembered that 1st-century slaves were generally well treated and were not only unskilled laborers but often managers, overseers, and trained members of the various professions (doctors, nurses, teachers, musicians, skilled artisans). There was extensive Roman legislation regulating the treatment of slaves. They were normally paid for their services and could expect eventually to purchase their freedom.[9]

Considering the above comments, one can certainly find support in defending the actions of Ms Tubman. The harsh treatment of black slaves motivated her to defy the law of the nation and risk her life to free “her neighbors” from unjust treatment and inhumane conditions. Ms. Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. are two more good examples of Christian men and women challenging societies’ mistreatment of human beings. Ms Parks resisted the civil law and refused to give her seat on a crowded bus to a white man. Her defiance led to the organization of the Montgomery Improvement Association, headed by Martin Luther King, Jr., a Baptist minister with a Ph.D. from Boston University. The bus boycott was the first of many instances in which nonviolent direct action was employed as a means that Blacks used to obtain the rights that whites already enjoyed. Initially, the boycott protested discourtesies to blacks and asked that black drivers be hired for bus routes in predominantly black areas. Eventually, the demands included the outright end of segregated seating. King distinguished clearly between the laws to be obeyed and those to be disobeyed: A just law is a man-made law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. In disobeying unjust laws, King developed this strategy: active nonviolent resistance to evil; not seeking to defeat or humiliate opponents, but to win their friendship and understanding; attacking the forces of evil rather than the people who happen to be doing the evil; willingness to accept suffering without retaliating; refusing to hate the opponent; and acting with a conviction that the universe is on the side of justice. [10]

As this subject is explored, it is necessary to note that both Paul and Peter felt it necessary to compel the Christians to submit to the rulers. Their faith in God resulted in a life of obedience to the teachings of Jesus Christ. Jesus commanded His followers to love their enemies and pray for those who despitefully mistreated them. Therefore, one should not find it strange that both Paul and Peter underwent some very severe public beatings and mockery. On one occasion, Paul was left for dead. Even until their death, both men focused their followers on a life of peace and love despite being mistreated and slandered. Paul informed the Corinthian Church that they “did not live according to the standards of this world.” He encouraged the believers to imitate Christ’s humility and live a life to please God. This is what he stated on one specific occasion: And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me--the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace. (Acts 20:22-24, NIV)

The primary emphasis at this point is that Paul and Peter devoted their lives to a life of peace and love. When Paul faced the civil courts, he did not war against it as a rebel. Instead, he used the civil system to provide himself with a platform to preach the gospel all the way to the Emperor of Rome! Indeed, this is exactly what Jesus Christ meant when he said “blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.” Jesus was willing to face persecution and death in order to help mankind. We must be willing to do the same!
What Difference Did the Civil Rights Struggle Make? There is much debate as to whether the civil rights struggle changed the lives of both blacks and whites. Some scholars have tried to minimize the effects of the civil rights movement. Progress is realized in the changes of our local, state, and political systems of government. Here is a view of Ronald Farley: Did the civil rights revolution make any difference in the lives of Americans—both black and white? The optimist will point to the tremendous progress of blacks. In 1964, just three blacks sat in Congress; when the 104th Congress took their seats in 1995, forty blacks served. Among blacks who were the parents of baby boomers, those born from the mid-1920s through the mid-1930s, just 45 percent completed high school educations, far below the 72 percent figure for their white age mates (U.S. Bureau of the Census 1991b, table 2). Among blacks from Generation X, those born in the decade just after the Civil Rights Act, 75 percent completed high school, not far below the 83 percent among whites (U.S. Bureau of the Census 1994b, table A-5)….Since the early 1970s, African-American families have consistently reported incomes that are about 58 percent those of white families. From this perspective, the beneficial results of the civil rights decade seem meager, so miniscule that you almost need a microscope to detect them.[11]

As mentioned earlier, the views of the civil rights struggle are consistent with findings presented in this paper. Although there is evidence of injustices, much work has gone forth to ensure a stronger future for African-Americans and future generations. Here is another view on this subject by Glen Loury) Nearly a century and a half after the destruction of the institution of slavery, and a half-century past the dawn of the civil rights movement, social life in the United States continues to be characterized by significant racial stratification. Numerous indices of well-being—wages, unemployment rates, income and wealth levels, ability test scores, prison enrollment and crime victimization rates, health and mortality statistics—all reveal substantial racial….Still, there is no scientific basis upon which to rest the prediction that rough parity of socioeconomic status for African-Americans will be realized in the foreseeable future. So we have a problem; it will be with us for a while; and it behooves us to think hard about what can and should be done.[12]

Although there is strong evidence of progress of the African-American, scholars continue to send mixed messages about what is important in the progress of African-Americans in the United States. Below is another example of a scholarly comment concerning the success of African-Americans by Dalton Conley: As a group, poor African-Americans—increasingly concentrated in inner cities and relatively worse off—maintain the same level credence in the American dream as they did in the 1960s. By contrast, the black middle class, who has achieved more in terms of income, occupation, and education since the 1960s, has grown increasingly bitter and disillusioned with the idea of the American dream.[13]

The progress of African-Americans seems to be subjective, although objectivity is often desired. Whether groups or individuals, there are both positive examples and negative examples of success among African-Americans. For instance, the crime rate (involving African-American Baby Boomers) varies throughout the country; yet, this group excels in all levels of education. The following comments are presented by Wade Roof: Having “roots” gives you an identity. Oscar Grantt, thirty-nine and a skilled machine operator, grew up in the African Methodist Episcopal Church in western North Carolina and is steeped in his religious tradition. His life is intimately bound up with the history and destiny of the African-American people. His church is so much a part of this experience that he could not imagine “walking away from those roots.” Oscar knows all too well the struggles against racism. It was during the 1960s racial revolution that his roots became meaningful to him. Segregation between the races was crumbling everywhere in the South as the civil right movement, under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., inspired blacks in a struggle for their rights.[14]

Again, this research reveals inconsistencies in determining whether African-Americans are progressing. The comments below are those of Karen K. Kirst-Ashman. Such views tend to represent the authors point of view: Making up at least 12.3 percent of the U.S. population, African-American people continue to suffer a range of injustices. When compared with whites, the following is true: children are much more likely to live in poor families; infant mortality is double; half as many African-Americans attend college; income levels are significantly less; African-Americans suffer significant injustices in the criminal justice system. African-Americans make up 45 percent of people in correctional facilities and 40 percent of people on death row. Forty-four percent of juveniles in custody are African-American.[15]

African-American, Collin Powell, contributed greatly to the establishment and support of the Troops to Teachers plan. This is certainly a successful endeavor worth mentioning. Marc Freedman expressed the following in support of this research paper: A study of Troops to Teachers by the National Center for Education Information found that 91 percent of the retired soldiers were highly satisfied with their new jobs, while a companion evaluation of nearly 400 school principals using these second-career teachers found that 75 percent ranked the veterans among the best, well above average, or above average. Best of all, most were from underrepresented backgrounds. Overall, 90 percent of the Troops to Teachers participants are male in a teaching field that is 74 percent female, and about third are from minority groups, compared with 10 percent nationally. A full 40 percent of the first class of ex-military teachers were African-American men. And retention rates, at 85 percent, are five times higher than the norm for urban teachers.[16]

CONCLUSION In conclusion, I would like to remind readers that Christians are devoted to a life of love. Despite the dreadful conditions we must face, we must stay focused on the fact that we’re only in this world for a very short stay. Life in this world is not fair! We must learn to submit to our leaders and make every effort to live a life of peace on this earth. One must be fully persuaded that God is in control and nothing can take place unless He allows it. After commanding His disciples to love their enemies, Jesus gave them the reason why they would be rejected: If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember the words I spoke to you: No servant is greater than his master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. (John 15:18-20)

Those who are more aggressive and less passive may say “even Jesus made a whip out of cords and drove the venders out of the Temple courts.” Although this would be a true statement, it does not offer the true sentiments of Jesus Christ when it comes to living peacefully with one’s neighbor. Christians are characterized by love and forgiveness, not hate and vengeance. We must keep in mind the instructions of Jesus to Peter: “Put your sword away! Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given me?” (John 18:11) To conclude this report, the following comments are provided: When we look at the powerful government of the world and at other business and educational organizations that have great influence, and then consider our local churches, or even our denominational headquarters, the church may seem to us to be weak and ineffective. Moreover, when we recognize the rapid growth of evil that is seen daily in our society, we may wonder if the church has power to make any changes at all. On the other hand, in some countries the officially recognized church has great influence on the conduct of national affairs. This was certainly true of the influence of the Roman Catholic Church in former times.[17]

Therefore, in light of this research, one must yield to the plea of Paul by submitting to the authorities and finding peaceful means of addressing the ungodly, unjust wickedness of society. Furthermore, we must obey God, rather than man. However, we do not wage war as the world does. We must learn to resist the temptation to judge others and act on our (sometimes) deceitful emotions. The issues on the cloning of humans, abortion, women roles in the Church, etc. must not draw out attention from the more weightier matter which is love. Love must be our ultimate motive in all that we do in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.


Barclay, William. The Letter to The Romans. Philadelphia: The Westminister Press, 1977.

Conley, Dalton. Being Black, Living in the Red. Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1999.

Farley, Reynolds. The New American Reality. New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 1996.

Freedman, Marc. Prime Time. New York: Public Affairs, 1999.

Gonzalez, Justo L. The Story of Christianity. New York: Harper Collins Publishers, 1984.

Grudem, Wayne. The First Epistle of Peter. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans, 1996.

Grudem, Wayne. Systematic Theology. Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 1994.

King, Coretta Scott. Salute to Historic Black Achievers. Nashville: Chelsea House Publishers, 1992.

Kirst-Ashman, Karen K. Human Behavior, Macro Social Enviornment. Standford: Brooks and Cole Thomas Learning, 2000.

Loury, Glenn C. The Anatomy of Racial Inequality. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2002.

Niebuhr, H. Richard. Christ and Culture. Harper Collins Publishers, 1996.

Grenz, Stanley J. The Moral Quest. Downers Grove: Imprint of Intervarsity Press, 1997

Roof, Clark Wade. Generation of Seekers. New York: Harper San Francisco, 1993.

Schaefer, Richard T. Racial and Ethnic Groups. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2000.

Shelly, Bruce L. Church History In Plain Language. Dallas: Word Publishing, 1995.

Tullock, John H. The Old Testament Story. Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2000.

[1] Stanley J. Grenz. The Moral Quest (Downers Grove, IL: Imprint of Intervarsity Press, 1997), 23.
[2] William Barclay, The Letter to the Romans, (Pennsylvania, PA: The Westminster Press), 173.
[3] Bruce Shelly, Church History In Plain Language (Dallas, TX: Word Publishing, 1995), 93.

[4] Justo L. Gonzalez, The Story of Christianity (New York, NY: Harper Collins Publishers), 285 and 286.
[5] John Tullock, The Old Testament Story (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc., 2000), 133.

[6] H. Richard Niebuhr,Christ & Culture (New NY: Harper Collins Publishers), 56.
[7] Shelly, 97.
[8] Coretta Scott King, Salute to Historic Black Achievers ( Nashville: Chelsea House Publishers), 255.
[9] Wayne Grudem, Tyndale New Testament Commentaries (Grands Rapids MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company), 123.
[10] Richard Schaefer, Racial and Ethnic Groups ( Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc), 221.
[11] Farley, Reynolds, The New American Reality, (New York, NY: Russell Sage Foundation), 208 & 209.

[12] Loury, Glenn C., The Anatomy of Racial Inequality, (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press), 3 & 4.

[13] Dalton Conley, Being Black, Living in the Red (Los Angeles CA: University of California Press), 26.

[14] Wade Clark Roof, Generation of Seekers (New York, NY: Harper San Francisco), 20.

[15] Kirst-Ashman, Karen K., Human Behavior, Macro Social Environment (Standford, CN: Brooks/Cole), 245.
[16] Freedman, Marc, Prime Time (New York, NY: Public Affairs), 164.

[17] Grudem, Systematic Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1994), 887.

Similar Documents

Premium Essay


...Ethics - Wikipedia, the free - SimilarShare Shared on Google+. View the post. You +1'd this publicly. Undo Ethics, also known as moral philosophy, is a branch of philosophy that involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong ... Business ethics - Professional ethics - Medical ethics - Deontological ethicsEthics | Define Ethics at - SimilarShare Shared on Google+. View the post. You +1'd this publicly. Undo (used with a singular or plural verb) a system of moral principles: the ethics of a culture. 2. the rules of conduct recognized in respect to a particular class of ... Bioethics - Metaethics - Situation ethics - Ethics of the fathersEthics Resource - SimilarShare Shared on Google+. View the post. You +1'd this publicly. Undo A nonprofit organization working to be a catalyst in fostering ethical practices in individuals and institutions through programs and publications in business and ... What is Ethics? - SimilarShare Shared on Google+. View the post. You +1'd this publicly. Undo A discussion of both what ethics is and what ethics is not. Ethics Updates Home Page. Moral theory; relativism; pluralism - SimilarShare Shared on Google+. View the post. You +1'd this publicly. Undo Ethics Updates......

Words: 558 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay


...Kathleen F. Brochu Manage Principles Dr. M. Miller Research Paper “Ethics” Should Ethics be taught in the Corporate Environment? By Kathleen Brochu Table of Contents Cover Page Title: “Ethics” Should ethics be taught in the corporate environment? By: Kathleen Brochu Introduction What is Ethics? Can ethics be taught? Whose responsibility is it? Body Meaning of Ethics How one learns ethics How to promote ethics in the work place Conclusion Higher production rates Caring Employees Improved Companies relationships Today’s business environment is not only fast-paced, but also highly competitive. In order to keep pace and stay ahead, possession of several key work ethics is a plus for achieving a successful career. Holding key traits such as attendance, character, teamwork, appearance, and attitude add value to both you as a person and your company. Successful careers come in many flavors, but work ethics are a main ingredient in most recipes for success. Ethics are not born in a vacuum. Ethics are more like a jigsaw puzzle that is thrown together over time, that when complete makes up who you are and what you believe. From our earliest days of life, we start to learn from those around us. These learned behaviors add to the traits that we are already born with and help to shape us into the person we will become. As part of this learning process, we develop what will become our norms. Norms are our......

Words: 1184 - Pages: 5

Free Essay


...Running head: Ethics and the College Student 1 The Ethics and College Student Title Page: BY MAURICE M. OWENS ABSTRACT The purpose of this paper is to see the college students’ view of ethics. There was enough evidence to say that college students’ perceive ethics instruction, and those who teach it, to be relevant and beneficial in shaping their own ethical behaviors. Students’ attitudes towards cheating is measured by their perception of cheating in high school, college, and non-major classes. The use of technology has an impact on college ethics since it is easier to cheat in online/hybrid classes and when some kind of technology is used in a course. College students believe that they are living in an ethical campus environment, where their faculty members are mostly ethical in nature and that it is never to late to learn about ethics in college. The Ethics and College Student Title Page: 2 Ethics is truly and important asset within today’s society, there are so many ways you can define ethics. I will say that to me ethics is about your upbringing, starting from the day you were born. Ethics will keep together and organization or it will dismantle and organization, you must enforce structure and guidelines. There are three strong principles when we talk about students and ethics. I call this (R, A, O) Responsibility, Accountability and Ownership. Students must be Responsible and withhold the obligations and the integrity of the school in......

Words: 1052 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay


...Ethics Essay ETH/316 May 21, 2014 University of Phoenix Ethics Essay This week's reading assignment covered many aspects of ethics. In this written assignment, we are asked to compare the similarities and differences between three types of ethical behavior, virtue, utilitarianism, and deontological ethics. To understand the three separate ethic behaviors, I must first define them. Virtue ethics deals with a person’s character, their inward behavior. If a person’s character is good, then so are his or her choices and actions. A person should always strive for excellence in everything that they do. Virtue ethics is not team-based; it’s all about the good of a particular person and how he or she think and act on a daily basis. An example of virtue ethics is, me being in line at the grocery store, the person ahead of me does not have enough money to complete his purchase, so I pay the difference to help him out. Utilitarianism ethics is different from virtue ethics because it promotes the greatest amount of good to a group. Utilitarianism is not individually based, it is more people based. Best described when a person sacrifices a little, in order to get more in return. A personal example of utilitarianism could be the time I was babysitting my niece and two nephews. Instead of me watching basketball on the television, I allowed them to watch a children’s movie in order to gain peace and quiet throughout the house. I gave up the television for the greater...

Words: 450 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay


..."Building a code of ethics to make a strong organization has many requirements to make it successful, organized, and valued."-Vivek Wadhwa. One main concept an organization needs to have to drive its success is a code of ethics. Having a code of ethics will manage an organization throughout its expansion and outset. The code of ethics will guide and teach the organization stay on board to its vision, plans, and goals but doing it in a manner or alignment that will protect the organization and its employees. Serving in the military, working in human resource, has introduced and taught a code of ethics for its organization which has many requirements to make it successful, organized, and valued. Working for the military has ethical fundamentals that help address or solve issues and situations that happen. Being in the military there is a certain look that soldiers must represent; this includes the proper uniform attire, attitude, and behaviors. If a soldier goes against what is expected of him or her there are different approaches and regulations that must be considered. For instance, when a soldier violates the law in his or her workplace like lying on documents or stealing, the outcome is an article15 and chances of getting promoted. The code of ethics for the military offers information on reporting suspected violations in reference to enforcement of the provisions of joint ethics. Having a code of ethics in the military keeps soldiers, as well as their families,......

Words: 853 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay


...Computer Ethics By Brenda B. Covert |    | | 1     Ethics is a short, two-syllable word of six letters that affects every segment of our lives. Ethics is a moral code involving a clear understanding of right and wrong. Another word for ethics is values. When people talk about ethics, they may be focused on one specific area, such as business, medical, political, environmental, religious, or personal ethics. Today we are going to focus on another important area of ethics: computer ethics.   2     If you have good computer ethics, you won't try to harass or hurt people with your computer, and you won't commit crimes such as information theft or virus creation. The problem that often arises when some of us are on a computer is that we don't see the harm in snooping in another person's private information or trying to figure out their passwords. It seems smart to copy and paste information into a school report and pretend that we wrote it. (Even if the information were public property --which most of it isn't-- that would be dishonest.) The crimes committed with hacking or gaming scams may not seem harmful because the victims lack faces. Flaming (aiming abusive, insulting messages at another person online) seems risk-free since we are anonymous. Indulging in obscenities and other offensive behavior online might feel empowering simply because no one knows who we really are. No one is going to come knocking on the door and demand a physical confrontation. However, every one of......

Words: 1135 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Ethics make the decision themselves. g. I believe I will eat sand because it is the standard meal for my community. * 3. Develop your own workplace example that fits with each system. Present each workplace scenario in a substantial paragraph of approximately 40 words. Although the table field will expand to accommodate your workplace examples, you may list them at the end of the table; make a note in the table to see the attached examples, however, so your facilitator knows to look for scenarios below the table. 4. Format references according to APA standards and include them after the table. Ethical Theory or System | Brief Definition | Other Names for Theory | Real-world Example | Workplace Example | Duty-based Ethics | Regardless of consequences, certain moral principles are binding, focusing on duty rather than results or moral obligation over what the...

Words: 1554 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay


...Ethics is a very big issue that involves diverse views and beliefs. Ethics has become more widespread with the public in today’s business world. There are three main theories of ethics. The first is the virtue theory which is all based around good quality ethics and sometimes simplified into being character based ethics. The next theory is the utilitarianism theory which is best described as the group theory. The third theory is the deontological theory. These are the three basic ethics theories of today. Virtue ethics describes the character of a moral instrument as a source of power for ethical behavior. A person's character is the entirety of their personality. Character qualities can be good, bad or somewhere in between. They can be commendable or not. The worthy characteristics are called virtues. Utilitarianism is an ethical way of life in which the happiness of the greatest number of people in the society is considered the maximum good. According to utilitarianism the moral worth of an action is determined by its resulting outcome. There is debate over how much thought should be given to actual consequences, potential consequences and planned consequences. Deontological ethics is an approach that focuses on the right or wrong of an action itself contrasting the rightness or wrongness of the penalty of those actions. These three ethical theories address ethics and morality with some similarities and some differences. One of the major differences between virtue theory...

Words: 522 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay


...value system or what could be called their personal ethics structure. One’s personal values, or ethics structure, are developed over a lifetime and is ever evolving. There are many factors that come into play during the development of one’s ethics structure. The process begins at childhood. The people that a person comes into contact with, influences inside the home such as parents, siblings, and neighbors. As one grows older and ventures out into the world outside the home teachers, friends and even enemies all help to shape one’s value system. Any type of communication with anyone that we come in contact with has the potential to shape our value system or our ethics structure. Good. Ethics Development One’s beliefs, values or ethics begin forming at an early age and continues throughout one’s life. Most often, those values learned early on are the ones that stay with you in some form or another throughout one’s life. My development started at an early age. I grew up in a very close community. My neighborhood was an extension of my family. Family togetherness, education and sports were very influential aspects that helped shape my ethics structure and continue to guide my actions to this day. Over time, my various experiences have continued to help evolve and shape my value structure. Both positive and negative experiences have played a large role in my value system. Good. Defining Ethics What are ethics? Ethics are the principles, norms, and standards......

Words: 1463 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay


...overview of organizational ethic policies Forbes magazine raised the issue in an article entitled, “Not Qualified for Obamacare’s Subsidies? Just Lie-Govt. To use ‘Honor System’ Without Verifying Your Eligibility” (2013, p.1). With the recent debates on whether or not Obama care is a critical component to ensure that individuals will receive health benefits, the ethical conversation must be debated throughout the United States of America amongst corporations and educational institutions which will be affected. According to Johnson, “The job of the leader, then, is to foster ethical accountability, to encourage followers to live up to their moral responsibilities to the rest of the group, (2012, p. 278. The author’s intent within is paper is to create of code of ethics that will demonstrate the significance of having an ethical and cultural competence in acceptance, understanding and sensitivity; both as an educational goal, and as a fundamental aspect of exemplifying responsibility and accountability. Rationale for the design of your code of ethics The motivation for designing a code of ethics stems from the author’s doctoral course on ethical dilemmas and stewardship. For this author, it opened the gateway to research for meaning and purpose to understand the importance on why educational, corporate and religious organizations must have a code of ethics that is grounded with integrity, authenticity and accountability. In order for a code of ethics to be in alignment......

Words: 1149 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay


...Shanice Naidoo 212538675 Ethics 101: Essay African ethics and its characteristics This essay seeks to explain what African ethics is as well as its characteristics. In order for that to be done, we must first explain what African ethics is and the foundations upon which it is built. African ethics refers to the values, codes of conduct and laws that govern the moral conduct of people within a given society. African ethics as a whole tends to place its focus on mankind. In this essay paper, we will also seek to explain the concept of Ubuntu, which is a concept that is strongly embedded in African ethics. African ethics is founded on three main concepts, firstly, God; followed by the community and lastly human dignity. According to the norms of African ethics, God is the pivotal focus in one’s life. Africans believe that God is the only one that can judge man because he has created it. They believe that humans should behave in a loving and forgiving manner because God loves and forgives them. It is held that any troubles that people encounter, such as, bad health; natural disasters etc., are not of God but rather of the devil or evil spirits ‘Satan’. Community in African ethics refers to the society as a whole or a certain group of people that one belongs to. The central focus here is the welfare and interests of each member of the community rather than that of the individual. They hold the view that being a member of the community by nature; the individual is......

Words: 1045 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay


...deed, word, and thought throughout our lifetime” Elizabeth Kubler-Ross. There are many philosophies on ethics, no matter which one we choose, the decisions we make do have consequences. Those consequences while small or unnoticed will eventually catch up to us. Our core values play a major role on how we deal with moral/ethical situations and while religion may have influenced some of our morals, one does not need to be religious parse to live a morally fruitful life.   Our morals are subject to change because our core values are subject to change and we must always be conscience about the decision we make and the impact that those decision will have on the rest of our lives. When I completed my completed my ethical lens inventory I found out some things about myself. My preferred lens is the rights and responsibilities lens, I believe that everyone should fulfill their duties fairly and tend to think to a problem carefully and research options to find the one that will allow you to fulfill your duties, seeking guidance from to the experts on the subject, to find the best solution for a problem. My goal is to make a fully informed decision and to meet the needs of the community, without harming the least advantaged. Unless we are mindful and work on becoming ever more ethically mature, we will create a crisis in our lives where we have to take stock of ourselves and our ethics. If we are lucky, we will handle the crisis without public embarrassment or having to wear an......

Words: 1056 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay


...Email: College and Semester: TESC, February 2014 Course Code: PHI-384-GS004 Course Name: Ethics & Business Professional Assignment 1 Questions for Thought Answer each of the following items thoroughly. Each numbered item should require no more than one page (250 words) as a response. 1. What does the term ethics mean to you? Do you see a difference between ethics and morality? Explain your answer. The term ethics to me can be very in-depth but very simply, elaborates on what is right and what is wrong. I consider myself as having ethics because I know right from wrong and because it was instilled upon me at a young age. Very simply, my values guide me along the right paths, eliminating possible gray areas. Both ethics and morality are about doing the right thing in everyday life to better the world but there are some differences even though they very much coincide. Ethics displays rules and guidelines over all, in hopes that these guidelines will become the social norm. Ethics permeates every facet of our life, whether it be at our home or workplace. It sets many different ways to look at situations and helps justify what is good and what is bad. Morality is more of a focus on what we do as individuals, in hopes of promoting the greater good. Ethics tells us that if someone needs help we should help them. Morality is shown when a person decides to hone in on the ethics that they know and step up to the plate and help that person. Morality is also deciding......

Words: 677 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay


...Ethical Theories Essay Charlotte McGuffey ETH/316 October 28, 2013 Philip Reynolds Ethical Theories Essay There are three normative approaches to ethics; Utilitarianism, deontological, and virtue theory. These three approaches have similarities and differences. This paper will go over those similarities and differences. This paper will also include how each theory details ethics, morality and will illustrate a personal experience that shows that correlation between moral, values, and virtue as they relate to these three theories of ethics. Utilitarianism relies on the predictability of the consequences of an action for the good of the many. “Utilitarianism is a theory that suggests that an action is morally right when that action produces mare total utility for the group than any other alternative” (Boylan, 2009). Another word, utilitarianism does not, in any way, relate to morality or ethics because the action is taken for the most usefulness, no matter what the outcome. Without knowing the end result of an action we cannot ascertain if it is ethical or not. Deontological theory judges the morality of any action dependent on the action’s devotion to rules, obligations, or duty. Deontology is based on whether the action taken is right or wrong. This theory is practical in places where adherence to rules or duty are to be followed; such as the military or religion. The principle of deontology judges the activity and whether that activity sticks with the guidelines or...

Words: 516 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay


...Critical Thinking and Ethics Aliya Johnson GEN/201 April 28th, 2015 Critical Thinking and Ethics Critical thinking and ethics are concepts that are very important to use in order to be successful either academically and/or professionally. When it comes to critical thinking and ethics both are very universal; and allow for creative views and ideas to collaborate. In order to get better understandings of how critical thinking and ethics can affect your career both professionally and academically we must first analyze these skills. Critical Thinking One analysis I would like to make is how critical thinking and ethics can impact our lives; which means that we have to first understand the definition of critical thinking. According to D.C. Phillips, “critical thinking is referred to generalized standards and principles of reasoning on which reasons for judgements could be based.” (Norris.S, 2014) In other words, people usually base their judgements on what they believe are generally right. Critical thinking allows us to be able to determine whether or not something is ethically right or wrong or maybe in between. There are six steps one can take towards critical thinking. The first step to critical thinking is being able to remember all events that may have taken place. Then, you have to understand the situation that’s going on around you. For example, you may want to “ask yourself if you can explain the situation in your own word.”......

Words: 898 - Pages: 4