- Количество слайдов: 25
An introduction to Christian ethics Topics: v Origins of Christian Ethics in ancient Israel v Jesus’ teachings: the Sermon on the Mount v What is sin? v What is imitating Christ? v The ethical significance of the ‘kingdom of God’ v. The place of the Bible in Christian ethics v Basis of Catholic and Protestant ethics
Origins in ancient Israel The Torah / ‘Law of Moses’ Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. The Shema. Deuteronomy 6: 4 -9 The Shema was the most important of the Torah’s commandments
Origins in ancient Israel The Ten Commandments • Given by God to Moses on Mount Sinai. • Formed the ethical basis of ancient Israelite society • ‘separated’ Israel from other religious groups of the region. (Monotheist religions were very rare at the time!). • Form the basis of the Jewish, Christian and Islamic religions and of Western society. Also known as the ‘Decalogue’ or ‘Ten Words’
Exodus 20: 1 -17; Deuteronomy 5: 7 -21
The main rituals of ancient Israel were sacrifices to worship God, atone for sins etc. This became ‘institutionalised’ in the Jerusalem Temple. Often called ‘holocausts’ (Burnt offerings)
Origins in ancient Israel The Prophets ‘For it is love that I desire, not sacrifice, and knowledge of God rather than holocausts. ’ Hosea 6: 6
Origins in ancient Israel The Prophets ‘You have been told, O man, what is good, and what the LORD requires of you: Only to do right and to love goodness, and to walk humbly with your God. ’ Micah 6: 8
Origins in ancient Israel The Prophets ‘In speaking to your fathers on the day I brought them out of the land of Egypt, I gave them no command concerning holocaust or sacrifice. This rather is what I commanded them: Listen to my voice; then I will be your God and you shall be my people. Walk in all the ways that I command you, so that you may prosper. Jeremiah 7: 22 -23 Ancient Israel’s rituals of sacrifice were futile according to the prophets. God wanted ethical behaviour from His people.
Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfil them Matthew 5: 17 Jesus was not replacing the teachings of the Torah or the Prophets but interpreting them as God wanted. i. e. faith and true ethical behaviour.
The Sermon on the mount. Jesus interpreted the Ten Commandments and the Torah. Here He spelled out the ethical behaviour He wanted His followers to adhere to. Task: read Matthew 5 -7 and find out what Jesus’ actual ethical teachings are The Mount of the Beatitudes in Northern Israel.
What is SIN? • Sin is a ‘wrong doing’: deliberately breaking God’s commandments • Sin came into the world as a result of Adam and Eve’s disobedience (the ‘original’ sin) • This has caused humans’ relationship with God to be damaged. • All humans are born ‘stained’ with this condition of original sin • The ‘cure’ for original sin is belief in Jesus and baptism. • This enables a person to be reconciled with God. • This was enabled because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. Original sin The cure
“All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3: 23) “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. ” (Romans 6: 23) Humans are thus failing to live up to what God intended for them because of their sins.
Salvation from sin is therefore found in Jesus. Christians are expected to believe in Him and imitate His example to be saved from the wages of sin (death). This includes a ‘moral framework’.
Imitating Christ: Unconditional love (Agape) • Christian ethics are based around the ‘law of love’ • As Jesus showed unconditional love to others, Christians are expected to do the same. • This is seen as fulfilling God’s intentions for humans • Love is the heart of Jesus’ teachings. • Jesus showed favour to no one and treated all people equally • All ethical actions and decisions should be based on the principle love (Fletcher’s Situation Ethics theory is based on this). THE CHRISTIAN ‘MORAL FRAMEWORK’
Imitating Christ: Unconditional love (Agape) 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. ‘ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbour as yourself. ’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments. " Matthew 22: 37 - 40
The Ethical significance of the ‘Kingdom of God’. • Jesus taught that the ‘Kingdom of God’ was at hand. Where all people would live in equality with justice, mercy and love. • All those who were ‘outcasts’ of society will be treated with equality and acceptance • This has implications for social justice and Christian pursuit of social ideals: i. e. all are equal to God and should be treated equally with compassion, understanding and agape.
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favour. “ Luke 4: 18 -19 (Jesus is reading the passage from Isaiah 61: 1 -2)
“He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty. ” The Magnificat. Luke 1: 52 -53
Viewed by most Christians as the Primary source of human experience of God. Seen by some Christians as the ‘Word of God’ Seen by others as human reflection upon experiences of God. Contains laws, history, literature and theology. Some Christians say that the Bible can be interpreted by the reader with the guidance of the Holy Spirit Human conscience and reason can help interpret the meaning Others say that due to its complex nature it needs to be interpreted by the Church.
‘All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness’ 2 Timothy 3: 16 The authority of the Bible
The Catholic Church v Ethics founded upon Western Christian tradition, based in Rome. v The Pope as head of the church on earth has the responsibility to interpret the meaning of scripture. v The pope is the successor of St. Peter the disciple of Jesus to whom Jesus said: “You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church, the gates of hell will not overcome it. I give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. ” (Matthew 16: 18 – 19)
The Catholic Church Moral teaching of the church is based on the Bible and Church tradition. Pope John XXIII Church tradition • Formulated through Church councils and Papal teachings • The first church council was in Jerusalem in AD 50. It decided what Jewish traditions were to be kept by non Jewish converts to Christianity. (See Acts 15) The Second Vatican Council 1962 -5 • The most recent was the Second Vatican Council (1962 -5)
The Catholic Church • The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) is the collection of Church teachings, beliefs and ethics • The moral theology of the ‘Doctors of the Church’ also forms a guidance including Thomas Aquinas • Aquinas’ Natural Moral Law ethical theory forms the foundation for deciding whether an action or moral dilemma is ethically right or wrong.
Protestant Churches: The Anglican Church • Anglican Church was the result of Henry VIII’s split from Rome in 1533. • Archbishop of Canterbury is the spiritual leader (although the Queen is the supreme head of the ‘Church of England’) • Synods (meetings) of Bishops decide Church policy and teachings • The Bible, the church’s teaching and the application of reason are the basis for ethical teaching. • The Church has a role in interpreting scripture. The Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams
Other Protestant Churches • Most broke away from Catholicism in the 16 th Century • Methodists broke away from Anglicans in 27 th Century. • the bible is the only Martin Luther Ulrich Zwingli authority for morality and belief. • Jesus’ teachings are particularly emphasised. • No official interpretation John Calvin of scripture – believer can interpret Bible for themselves. John Wesley