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It's Not How You Feel

by Aubrey Belue

Does it "feel good?" Does it feel "right?" If so, today's culture says, "go for it!" Thus, we make "right" what our feelings say it is, rather than what it really is. Somehow, we have reached the point in contemporary reasoning that most say that one can pursue his individual dream without having to confront the consequences of bad or wrong choices. Believe in God, or not; accept Christ, or not; live morally, or not--to those people, it is all the same. Do what you want to do, what you feel like doing, what you think is right in doing, and God will just set aside His rules to approve of you regardless. We confuse civic freedom with divine approval, and so long as it is "legal" (and some are not too "picky" about that), it is seen as acceptable. 

The question is, "Is our standing with God determined by our feelings, or by the rule of divine law?" Is it a matter of God's will, or ours? Serious consequences follow the reasoning described above: 

  1. It nullifies the Bible as a defining book. In fact, the Bible becomes largely useless, since it can at any point be superseded by one's personal feeling. No doubt we "feel" like it has some value, but it can always be overridden by our feelings. There is no sense of responsibility to conform to its message. 
  2. It glorifies human wisdom and authority. The highest court of appeal becomes the human mind and thought, rather than the mind of God. If what I feel is right, even if it contradicts what God teaches in His word, then MY idea is seen as better than His; my authority as greater than His. In so doing we minimize the greater wisdom and power of an Almighty God. 
  3. It results in anarchy and chaos. Rejecting a common source of authority -- the written word of God -- each becomes his own source. There are as many "rights" as there are people to think them up. No wonder we live in troubled times. No wonder our children are so confused as to morals and religion. Countless competing human ideas bombard them (and us) with equally justifiable claims to what is "right." 
  4. It ignores God's place in our universe. He has defined right from wrong, sin from righteousness, truth from error. Any course conflicting with His "law" exacts terrible penalties. 

The truth? The solution to mankind's problems lie not in human minds, but in the unsearchable mind of an all-wise God. As we have observed before in this column, it is His world, we eat His bread, drink His water, and breathe His air. In addition to being ill-equipped by nature and inclination to determine "right", we belong to Him, and are obligated to be obedient. Man's way never "fixes" anything important, nor moves us one step toward fellowship with God. This may not be the popular line, but we are interested in Truth, not compromise, and all human objections aside, God's word is still true, and His way is still the only way (John 14:6).