How many times have you been wrestling with a decision, perhaps for work or personal matters? It is always helpful to take time to look at the issue. Many prefer outlined steps to take or perhaps a framework to help when they have an issue to address. As we look at ethics in this course, you will see Utilitarianism, Kant or deontology lay out a framework, to help determine if something is ethical or moral. The Bible is also another framework that can help us make decisions.
Upon successful completion of this discussion, you will be able to:
- Identify positive outcomes from having a biblical framework to assess ethical decisions.
- Bible (New International Version)
Proverbs, in particular, points us to seek wisdom to aid us in our decision making. The word “way” is used in Proverbs ESV 76 times. The Hebrew word translated as “way” most of the time implies going on a journey. Think about the course you’re on now; you are on a journey. Basically, it is a way of living or acting, and it is linked to our moral behavior.
Studying Proverbs helps point us in the right direction or path.
This week I want you to look at Proverbs Chapter 3:5-6 and 3:21-24.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6, NIV).
21 “My son, do not let wisdom and understanding out of your sight,
preserve sound judgment and discretion;
22 they will be life for you,
an ornament to grace your neck.
23 Then you will go on your way in safety,
and your foot will not stumble.
24 When you lie down, you will not be afraid;
when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet” (Proverbs 3:21-24, NIV).
There are four blessings that come from these verses. These blessings come to us when we seek the way of wisdom.
Verse 6 tells us that when we trust in the Lord with all our heart, wisdom makes our paths straight. Next, in verse 23, we see wisdom keeps us secure as we walk, and wisdom keeps us from stumbling. Finally, verse 24, tells us if we follow the way of wisdom, our sleep will be sweet. We can lie down and not be afraid. How wonderful to know because we used God’s wisdom as our guide on our way, we can be secure in our decisions and sleep well. This reminds me of Proverbs 1:33, “But whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.”
- Review the rubric to make sure you understand the criteria for earning your grade.
- Take a moment to reread Proverbs 3:5-6 and Proverbs 3:21-24.
- See if you can remember the 4 S’s from these verses. Straight, Secure, Stumble, and Sleep this week. Will your decisions this week demonstrate how God blessed you with these 4 S’s?
Questions for Reflection
- From your perspective, what does it mean to “trust in the Lord with all your heart”?
- Do you have areas where it is easier to trust Him and also have areas where it is more difficult?
- How can you trust Him more in those areas?
- This passage of Scripture tells how our lives will be if we seek the wisdom of God to guide as we make decisions. How would it feel to know that you are on a straight, secure path where you will not stumble and fall, and when you lay your head down at night, your sleep will be sweet?