Morality And Immorality

Introduction:
The words moral or morality, immoral and immorality by themselves do not appear
in the Engllish version of the King James Bible.
By definition we understand morality to be: that which renders an action right or wrong:
the practice or doctrine of the duties of life, principles, and conduct that promte honor,
purity, and virtue.
In contrast, immorality would be: that which is inconsistent with what is right. Wicked-
ness and liscentiousnes, which is given to indulgences of the animal passions, would be
synonymous with immorality.
For something to be determined right or wrong there needs to be etablished principles of
life that promote virtuous and honorable qualities. There needs to be a standard by which
all principles are measured by. Society today has what is called “situational ethics”.
Basically, “situational ethics” says that wehat is right or wrong for you may not be right or
wrong for me. Hence, the problem exists in many cultures and societies today in determin-
ing what is honorable, pure and virtuous. Laws are made and interpreted and reinterpreted
in order to set standards that meet the requirements of the evolution of each generation.
We maintain that the standard for morality and immorality is none other than God the
Creator Himself. We also maintain that God Almighty, the creator Himself, has revealed His
principles for living a life that is moral and pure. Those principles that reveal His nature and
character are clearly stated in God’s Holy Word, the Holy Bible. Thus, the word of God,
the Holy Bible, reveals God Himself in nature, in character, and in purity, and in that same
Word of God he reveals His principles and standards for all humanity of all societies for all
times. God’s standard of right and wrong never change. to violate what God deems to be
right is considered rebellion, disobedience, or sin. Thus, sin by definition is to transgress the
moral principles that are set as the standard by none other than Almighty God Himself. Since
God never changes, His character and standard for what is morally right or immorally wrong
never change.
Malachi 3:6
For I am the LORD, I change not;
Psalms 119:128
Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false
way.
Thus, the essence of man’s problem is sin, or rebellion, or transgression against the
principal of character of God Himself. God’s remedy for man’s dilemma of sin is Jesus Christ
and Him crucified. Left to himself, man is incapable of living right before God.
Psalm 14:1-3
v1 The fool has said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abomin-
able works, there is none that doeth good.
v2 The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any
that did understand, and seek God.
v3 They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good,
no, not one.
Once mankind repents and turns to Almighty God through Jesus Christ, he now has his nature
changed and is made one with God. All his transgressions are erased and he has a clean slate,
a new fresh start of a new life with God as his Father.
Romans 3:24-25
v24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
v25 Whom God has set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his
righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Psalm 103:12
As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.
Having repented of his past life and turning to God as father by Jesus Christ is only the
beginning. Now the new creation man must continue to grow and walk with God, not
changing the standard of the principles of morality set up from the beginning until all time
and eternity. The intent of our position on morality and immorality is not just to establish the
standard but to provide empowerment and understanding of how to live a life in accordance
with God Himself.
James 4:17
therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
It is important to distinguish between righteousness by faith without the works of the law and
living a holy life consecrated unto God. Real bible faith is more than a mere profession.
There are corresponding actions. Faith without works is dead. Faith without deeds and
actions of obedience to back it up, by itself is destitute of power. It is inoperative. It is dead.
Problems arise in the hearts and minds of well meaning Christians in trying to understand law
and grace. If we are under grace and the law was nailed to the cross (Colossians 2:14) then
how can there be a writen code to determine what is moral or immoral? The answer is rightly
dividing the word of truth, the bible. What is no more valid in the Old Testament is sub-
stantiated in the New Testament. What is valid in the Old Testament as to right and wrong is
substantiated in the New Testament and is relevant for our lives today. It is of utmost im-
portance that we note that the moral laws of the Old Testament are unchanging in the New
Testament. The New Testament unequivocally enforces the moral laws of the Old Testament.
Thus, there is a written code, a law written, a standard of statutes that we can go to in order
to direct our lives and determine what is moral and immoral behaviour.
In other words, the Old Testament, the Law of Moses, ended with the New Testament,
the crucifixion and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. Many have said that because we
are no longer under the Law of Moses and now under grace that there is no more sin. We
disagree with this position. We also refute the position that it is irrelevant as to how a Christian
lives. The fact is this. the bible, in it’s entirety is spiritual law and it is the bible which defines
right and wrong, what is moral and immoral. Concerning morality and immorality both Old and
New Testaments establish spiritual law and are in total agrement and are unchanging pertain-
ing to right and wrong as instituted by Almighty God from the beginning of creation.
I) The Need For Repentance
Matthew 3:1-3
v1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judea,
v2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of God is at hand.
v3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying
in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
The word repent-Strong’s #3340- metanoeo-met-an- oy- ah from 3326 and 3539- to think
differently or afterwards, i.e., reconsider.
Repentance is a change of thinking that so effects the heart of man that it causes him to go in an
opposite direction. Hear the word that the angel spoke to Zacharias about the character and
the work of his son to be John the Baptist.
Luke 1:16-17
v16 And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God.
v17 And he shall go before him in the spirit and the power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the
fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people
prepared for the Lord.
So repentance is a change of thinking that prepares the heart which produces an action. This is
the exact same message that Jesus preached. John’s message was to repent, change your think-
ing which will prepare your heart to believe on the one that will come after me. Jesus’ message
was repent, prepare your heart to come and follow Me, the one that John told you about.
Mark 1:14-15
v14 Now after that John was put into prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of
the kingdom of God,
v15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and
believe the gospel.
Romans 10:9-10
v9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thy heart that
God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
v10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made
unto salvation.
One would argue that repentance is not mentioned in the scriptures in Romans. Notice that be-
lieving is in the heart, not just a mental assenting to something heard. So where is the repent-
ance? Where is the turning and going in an opposite direction? It is the confessing with the
mouth the Lordship of Jesus. Before receiving Christ, He (Jesus) was not Lord. The con-
fessing of Jesus as Lord is the repentance, the change of thinking and turning of the heart to the
Lord. This is the initial born-again experience. True repentance will produce fruits of righteous-
ness or actions that will verify that our hearts have been changed.
Matthew 3:8
Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
Matthew 3:8 (Amplified Bible)
Bring forth fruit that is consistent with repentance ( let your lives prove your change of heart):
II) Do Chriatians Need to Repent?
1Corinthians 6:13-20
v13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now
the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord: and the Lord for the body.
v14 And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power.
v15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members
of Christ , and make them members of an harlot? God forbid.
v16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he,
shall be one flesh.
v17 But he that is joined to the Lord is one spirit.
v18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth
fornication sinneth against his own body.
v19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you,
which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
v20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit,
which are God’s.
Paul is here addressing born-again, spirit-filled Christians about the sanctity of the body. He
is condemning impurity, in particular sexual immorality. when he says to flee fornication, when
he says to flee sin, he is telling the Christians to run away from it. In other words, go in an op-
posite direction from it. He then reminds them who they are and who they belong to. What he
is saying is, “Remember when you made Jesus the Lord of your life? Did you forget that the
Holy Spirit is now residing in that body of yours? Now you have a responsibility to glorify
God by allowing that new spirit-man, empowered by the Holy Spirit to bring glory and
honor to God through the deeds and actions of your body.”
2Corinthians 7:1, 7-10
v1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness
of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
Once saved, Christians are exhorted to live a life of purity and undefilement in godly fear.
v7 And not by his (Titus) coming only, but by the consolation wherewith he was comforted
in you, when he told us your earnwst desire, your mourning, your fervent mind towards me;
so that I rejoiced the more.
v8 For though I made you sorry with a letter, I do not repent, though I did repent: for I
perceive that the same epistle hath made you sorry, though it were but for a season.
v9 Now I rejoice not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye
were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing.
v10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the
sorrow of the world worketh death.
This portion of scripture is referring to Paul’s first letter which resulted in repentance in the
hearts of those that were doing evil. It refers to sexual immorality of I Corinthians 5 where a
man was having sexual relations with his father’s wife. Paul was very strict in his instructions
concerning this situation. His instructions were to excommunicate the brother, turn him over
to Satan for the destruction of his flesh that his spirit might be saved in the day of the Lord
Jesus Christ. His instructions were for noone to keep company with him until he repented
and changed his thinking which produced an action back to God. His instructions were not
to treat him as an unbeliever, but to admonish him as a brother. For this Paul said in verse 8
of 2 Corinthians 7 that even though I made you sorry by instructing you in this way, I do not
repent. I am not changing my thinking about making that decision to deal with it the way I
instructed. Why? Because it led to godly sorrow which worked repentance an d restored
that brother to fellowship.
2 Corinthians 12:21-13:1-3
v21 And lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and that I shall be-
wail many which have sinned already, and have not repented of the uncleanness and forn-
ication and lasciciousness which they have committed.
13:1 This is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall
every word be established.
v2 I told you before, and foretell you, as if I were present, the second time; and being absent
now I write to them which heretofore have sinned, and to all other, that, if I come again, I
will not spare:
v3 Since ye seek proof of Christ speaking in me, which to you-ward is not weak, but is
mighty in you.
Paul is here, again, addressing the believers at Corinth concerning unrepentance toward un-
cleanness, fornication, and lasciviousness which they had committed. He continues to warn
them of the diciplinary measures that he will take when he comes as in 1 Corinthians 5
should they not repent.
III) The Works of the Flesh
Many have taught that since Jesus was love personified, that he did not address sins such
as homosexuality or adultery, or lasciviousness, and that the church should not address such
sins, but welcome everyone and allow them to continue to live any lifestlye that they choose
without repentance. First of all there is no such thing as love without the truth. If we love
people we will tell them the truth. Secondly, Jesus did address such sins in a negative way, and
to say that we the church should not address them because Jesus did not is not only false, but
contrary to everything we have already established about Jesus’ command to sinners and the
church to repent.
Mark 7:20-23
v20 And he said, that which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man.
v21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications,
murders,
v22 Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride,
foolishness:
v23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
Jesus said these actions come from the heart and they defile the man and they are evil. The
apostle Paul also addressed the works of the flesh. Jesus called them the outworkings of the
heart in all of the gospels where they are mentioned.
Galatians 5:19-21
v19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; adultery, fornication, unclean-
ness, lasciviousness,
v20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
v21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of which I tell you before, as
I have also told you in time past, they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of
God.
Paul points out the same evil works that Jesus did and expanded the list. It must be pointed
out again that he is talking to born-again, spirit-filled Christians. When he says ” I have told
you in time past,” he means he has addressed this issue before with them.
The word “do” in verse 21 is the word poieo in the Greek and it means to practice or per-
form repeatedly or habitually. We will address this more in detail later. We will also address
the consequence of the practice of sin without repentance later though Paul says here that
they will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Paul lists four main categories of the works of the flesh that are evil, defile a man, and if
continually practiced without repentance will inhibit a person from inheriting or possessing the
kingdom of God. They are:
1) Sexual Impurity- Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness.
2) The Occult- Idolatry, and witchcraft. The Greek is pharmakia, drugs or sorcery.
3) Divisions- everything that divides the body of Christ, homes, and families is of the flesh.
4) Self-indulgences.
Nothing good ever comes out of the flesh. Anything the flesh produces is corrupt. The word
fornication is the Greek word “porneia”. Strong’s 4202 from 4203 porneuo. It means unlaw-
ful sexual practice. It includes homosexuality, lesbianism, incest, bestiality, prostitution, sexual
intercourse between unmarried partners, sexual relations between married partners with
others that are not their spouse, and sexual actions beyond the normal intent of the Creator.
We take this time to emphasize sexual immorality because of the rampant attempts to
amoralize homosexuality, lesbianism, fornication, and adultery which our society and some
factions of the church have deemed normal and God ordained. Agian, these practices,
among the others mentioned, are condemned by both the Old and New Testaments by God
as abominable. The remedy is Jesus at the cross and the power of the Holy Spirit working
in the heart of man. Repentance and a renewing of the mind are essential to overcoming
such practices. Having a righteousness consciousness instead of a sin-consciousness will
lead a Christian to victory in living a holy and pure life.
James 1:21
Wherefore, lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness
the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
At this time we would like to address our position in dealing with people, Christians and
non-Christians , who are involved in sinful practices, in particular, sexual immorality. Our
position is always restoration. The common statement that God loves the sinner but hates
the sin is true. Jesus Christ died for the ungodly. He so loved the world that He gave His
only begotten Son. His love is unconditional. That is why we preach the gospel to the un-
saved, regardless of their sinful condition, and that is why we restore a sinning brother.
Man, however, must still repent. He must change his thinking that produces an action that
causes him to leave his sinful practice and turn to God. We are not talking of sinless per-
fection. If, during his walk with the Lord, a Christian commits a sin he can go to God and
confess that sin and God is faithful to forgive him and cleanse him from all unrighteousness.
This is a work in which the Holy Spirit will come along side to help in time of need.
IV) Grace- A License to Sin?
There are some erroneous teachings in the body of Christ today that are gaining attention
that need to be addressed. One such teaching says that because I am no longer under the
Law of Moses, but now undwer grace that there is no more sin or another way to put it is
that God doesn’t see our sin when we commit the act of sin. He sees us through the blood
of Jesus. It is true, god sees us as righteous because of Jesus’ finished work at the cross of
Calvary and our faith in Him. Let the word of God speak and answer the points stated
above.
Romans 6:1-2, 11-17
v1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin , that grace may abound?
v2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
Sin is hateful and destructive. We as Christians who have died to sin and the love of sin
should no longer want to live in it.
v11 Likewise recken also yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God through
Jesus Christ our Lord.
v12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts of
thereeof.
v13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield
yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instru-
ments of righteousness unto God.
v14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under law, but under grace.
v15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God
forbid.
When those that were previously under thre Law of Moses heard Paul’s gospel of grace
they misinterpreted what he was saying. They thought that he was saying it was alright to
go on sinning because there was no Old Testament law to condemn them. We have already
established that both testaments, the word of God, are spiritual law and establish morality
and immorality for all people of all generations.
v16 Know ye not that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey; whether of sin unto
death, or of obedience unto righteousness?
v17 Bur God be thanked, that ye were servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart
that form of doctrine which was delivered to you.
There is serious consequences of yielding to sin. A person is a slave to whom he yields
himself unto. Even though we have been made righteous and are no longer slaves to sin,
but slaves to righteousness, God does not take away the believer’s will or ability to choose
to whom he will yield himself unto. If God doesn’t see our sin, then why the strong warning
to Christians under grace to take sin seriously and not yield our members as slaves to it
any longer?
Hebrews 10:26-29 (Amplified Bible)
v26 For if we go on deliberately and willingly sinning after once acquiring the knowledge of
the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice left to atone for our sins ( no further offering to which
to look forward)
v27 ( There is nothing left for us then ) but a kind of awful and fearful prospect
and expectation of divine judgement and fury of burning wrath and indignation which will
consume those who put themselves in opposition to God.
v28 Any person who has violated and ( thus) rejectred and set at naught the Law of Moses
is put to death without pity or mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses.
v29 How much worse ( sterner and heavier) punishment do you suppose he will be judged
to deserve who has spurned and ( thus) trampled the Son of God, and who has considered
blood by which he was consecrated common and unhallowed, thus profaning it and insulting
and outraging yjr ( Holy) Spirit ( Who imparts) grace (the unmerited favor and blessing of
God)?
It must be pointed out that Hebrews, as well as all other epistles of the New Testament are
not written to unbelievers but believers. It is not our point to focus on sin instead of right-
eousness. It is merely our point to show that the epistles here, and there are other places;
Hebrews 6:4-6; 2Peter 2:20-22; Galatians 5:19-21; Ephesians 5:3-7; 1Timothy 4:1-5;
to name a few have strong warnings to Christians that fall back into the practice of sin and the
danger of that leading to apostasy or falling away from the faith.
V) How Can a Christian Live in Habitual Sin?
This is a question that should have been already answered. Actually it is a question that
cannot be answered but only explained in light of God’s word.
1 John 3:6-9
v6 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither
knoweth him.
v7 Little children, Let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even
as he is righteous.
v8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For
this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
v9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him; and he
cannot sin, because he is born of God.
Can a person born of god commit sin? If it were possible for a christian to sin, there would
be a contradiction in this passage of Scripture. If it is not possible for those born-again to
sin, then there must be very few Christians. These verses address two eroneous doctrines:
antimomianism and perfectionism. Antinomianism states that because we are no longer under
the Law of Moses but under grace that there are no conditions established that hold a man
accountable to any moral law. It is only required of him that he believe, then he can live as
he pleases. Perfectionism says that the sin nature has been so radically removed that a person
is no longer capable of sinni ng. both of these teachings are incorrect.
These verses do not denote the mere action of sin but the idea of habitually sinning. In
verse 9, the phrase “does not commit sin” is in the present tense denoting continuous action.
This is in contrast to the aorist tense used when speaking of one point in the past when a sin
ws committed. there were also those who taught that intellectual knowledge was enough to
make men accedptable to God, even though they lived impure lives. this is the doctrine of
perfectionism. Hence, John says in vers seven that only those who “doeth righteousness”
meaning “the one habitually doing”, were considered righteous. It was the pattern of their
walk and practice to live righteous.
The correct translation of 1 John 3:8 is “the one who practices sin.” The expression
“he cannot sin” in verse 9 simply means that the believer cannot sin habitually, deliberately,
or maliciously. So to answer the question, “How can a Christian live habitually or practice
sin” is a question that cannot be answered. A true believer cannot habitually practice sin. He
may sin, repent of it, and be cleansed of it. but to habitually practice sin is not compatible
with the born-again nature.