Who Has a Problem with Morals?

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Who Has a Problem with Morals?

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The story of former New York Governor Elliot Spitzer's fall due to his apparent involvement with a prostitution ring known as the Emperors Club V.I.P. has dominated American media.

It seems that everything about the sordid incident is being reported. From Spitzer's career to the impact on his wife and three children to how wives deal with cheating husbands to what makes men seek out prostitutes to what prostitutes think of the situation to the possible impact on the U.S. presidential race—every conceivable angle is being pursued.

And it's not just the media that is fixated on this titillating event. The American public is likewise voraciously taking in every detail. Foxnews.com reported it as the most often read article and as the top viewed video. A provocative photo of "Kristen," the alleged high-priced prostitute connected with Spitzer, circulates throughout the reports and she has even been interviewed so she can give her side of the story.

What can we learn from this tragedy? We're overwhelmed with information but who is explaining how to sort it all out?

The easy answer as to who has a problem with morals is Elliot Spitzer. But the answer extends beyond Spitzer, beyond the prostitutes in the Emperors Club V.I.P., and beyond those who use the services of such rings.

The painful truth is that sometimes others see us better than we see ourselves. When it comes to morality, the world sees the United States as a hypocritical nation. We Americans seemingly become righteously indignant whenever a public official is caught in a sex scandal yet seem not to realize that our nation is also a major producer of pornographic and sexually suggestive movies. When foreigners view American television, they see programs filled with sexual innuendos and programs that promote sexual immorality of every type.

And how are American families doing when it comes to raising moral children?

Notice this recent press release by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention: "Chicago (March 11, 2008) – A CDC study released today estimates that one in four (26 percent) young women between the ages of 14 and 19 in the United States – or 3.2 million teenage girls – is infected with at least one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases (human papillomavirus (HPV), chlamydia, herpes simplex virus, and trichomoniasis)."

Bear in mind that this report only estimates the percentage of girls ages 14-19 having one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases. It doesn't consider the uncommon sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or the number of young men and women who are having premarital sex, yet apparently having not contracted a common STD.

So what does the CDC recommend? It most certainly doesn't tell people to stop having sex prior to and outside of marriage as the Bible teaches. Instead of giving this advice that would stop STDs in their tracks, the "CDC recommends annual chlamydia screening for sexually active women under the age of 25. CDC also recommends that girls and women between the ages of 11 and 26 who have not been vaccinated or who have not completed the full series of shots be fully vaccinated against HPV" (ibid.).

We humans don't want to change our behavior and we don't want anyone to judge us. Human nature says, "I'm in charge of my own moral compass. I'll do what is right for me." But there is a Judge to whom we will all eventually answer.

Just before the fall of ancient Israel, the prophet Jeremiah described the moral scene: "…they committed adultery and trooped to the houses of prostitutes. They were well-fed lusty stallions, each neighing for his neighbor's wife" (Jeremiah 5:7-8 Jeremiah 5:7-8 [7] How shall I pardon you for this? your children have forsaken me, and sworn by them that are no gods: when I had fed them to the full, they then committed adultery, and assembled themselves by troops in the harlots' houses. [8] They were as fed horses in the morning: every one neighed after his neighbor's wife.
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, New Revised Standard). Continuing, God said, "Shall I not punish them for these things? says the Lord; and shall I not bring retribution on a nation such as this?'" (verse 9). And He did. And He will do the same to our nation if we do not repent.    

Regarding moral behavior, we all—not just Spitzer and the prostitutes—have many problems to overcome (Romans 3:23 Romans 3:23For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
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). Thankfully, God offers help—if we sincerely accept His terms.

First we must learn from His word—the Bible—how to distinguish acceptable from unacceptable behaviors. Next we must reverse course (repent).  Then, to receive through the power of God's Spirit the essential help we need to live holy lives, we need to make a baptismal covenant with Him and Jesus Christ His Son through which our old self is buried symbolically with Christ (Romans 6:3-4 Romans 6:3-4 [3] Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? [4] Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
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