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Are they reversible?

William Lloyd Garrison, a journalist from the 19th century asked, "Are right and wrong convertible terms, dependent upon popular opinion?" Mr. Garrison actually died in 1879, way before any of the present issues arose in government, health, and cultural climate. Yet, he may have had a little insight into human nature when he posed that question, for humankind has always tried to make wrong right since the beginning of time. It is the 'spin' that mankind puts on an issue that 'converts' it from wrong to make it seem a little closer to right. That 'spin' has been around since the Garden of Eden!

The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to good teaching. (Proverbs 12:15) 

While the question Garrison posed during the time he worked to free slaves in America is important, there is a lesson to be found in it for all of us today. Are 'right' and 'wrong' actually able to be switched - dependent upon the whim of whoever is the loudest or most 'heard' voice? I think society as a whole is frequently in danger of 'accepting' what appears right without any real investigation into a matter - because we trust our media to educate us rather than allowing God to lead us into truth.

There are always going to be 'sides' in a matter - it is human nature to create an opinion on a matter. We form these opinions based upon a set of morals we have 'believed' and a certain element of 'faith'. Our morals actually act as the 'rules of conduct' by which we make choices in life. If these 'rules of conduct' are closely aligned with scripture, we usually find ourselves making 'right' choices. When we allow our 'morals' to be swayed away from scripture, subtly allowing compromises to enter into our beliefs, we in danger of forming opinions that are not capable of producing the same upright results in our lives.

The 'sides' don't always appear as they did in the old western movies - the evil villain wearing a black hat and the good wearing a white one. If they did, it would be easier to spot the ones to avoid, wouldn't it? The 'work' that goes into uncovering the 'sides' in life is hard, but if we are to avoid compromising our moral standards, we must do the work. Herein is the rub - we want to choose well, but we don't really want to expend the effort to ensure those standards are always upheld.

Many will read this and think I am merely writing this because the elections are upon us. Yes, they are and our 'work' at uncovering the truth about each candidate is important, but I write this with a more global perspective in mind. Our choices each and everyday will affect not only ourselves, but others around us. Each compromise provides an opportunity for someone else to view our actions and ask if it is okay to make the same compromises in their own. We actually present the opportunity for someone to form an 'opinion' based upon our actions. 

I think this is why God reminds us to not be prone to just do whatever seems right in our own eyes - to not be swayed by opinion, but to be upheld by truth. Truth must win out each and every time in our choices, but if it doesn't - that is where grace enters in. Grace doesn't allow us to live 'within' the compromises, though. It challenges us to turn from them and allow the right moral principles to become the ones that guide our steps once again. Right will never be wrong and wrong will never be right. Just sayin!


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