Gray Areas

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by amen_corner, May 28, 2003.

  1. amen_corner

    amen_corner
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    I'm leading a Bible study this weekend for college students on questionable issues for Christians. Could you help me out by giving me 3-5 gray areas that college students might be confronted with? Thanks!
     
  2. USN2Pulpit

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    Perceived gray areas are sometimes not gray at all in light of scripture, but here's one that might apply:

    How about studying in the lonely hours of the night with a companion of the opposite sex?

    How about whether or not to join a fraternity/sorority? (And their parties)

    How about good instruction on being able to learn about the theories of evolution without watering down or otherwise compromising your own beliefs?
     
  3. amen_corner

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    Those are good! Let me clarify that I'm trying to determine what others in the college setting may state are "gray areas" (not that they are gray); but that these students need to be equipped to handle those type of situations.
     
  4. dianetavegia

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    I'm not sure how in-depth you can get with this.

    Clothing. These shirts that stop 5 inches above the belly button worn with pants that are 5 inches below the belly button are very provocative and suggestive.

    I immediately thought of a report I saw this past week saying that young people today don't think heavy petting and other sexual activities are actually sex.

    Certain birth control methods actually promote abortion. IUD, certain B/C pills.

    Soft porn. Movies, magazines, etc. that show people in limited clothing and suggestive situations.

    Boy am I glad I'm an old married woman!
    Diane
     
  5. Larry in Tennessee

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    We can thank Slick Willie Clinton for that one. :rolleyes:
     
  6. Haruo

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    We can thank Slick Willie Clinton for that one. :rolleyes: </font>[/QUOTE]I don't think so. The notion that only specific, carefully defined acts constitute "sex" (for purposes of saying "what's a no-no" anyway) has been widespread for generations; it's a natural result of the intersection of puritanical morality, legalistic ethics, and adolescent lust. Baptists have held it, Catholics have held it, and for all I know there have been atheists who have held it (atheists can be as puritanical and legalistic as the rest of us). Clinton was merely an unusually prominent, unusually publicized example. He is the result, not the cause, of this way of reasoning.

    Haruo
     
  7. Jim1999

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    Having grown up since the late 20's, I can tell you that sex has been around a long time before Mr. Clinton. It has always been a problem amongst youngsters, but not quite so open as it is now.

    If you want to blame anything, a finger can point straight to Hollywood and the telly. These tow have led to failing levels of morality in all of society.

    At the university, many young people were interested in issues involving sex education, how far to go, and when is it right..The majority actually live together these days. At first, for economic reasons.......but you know wot happens when the guard comes down.

    The most famous line amongst youth is,...Wot's wrong with..........? I found the only answer was,,,,,,,,,Wot is right with...........?

    Cheers, and all the best in your classes.

    Jim
     
  8. Baptist Believer

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    Since you are speaking to college age adults, an obvious moral gray area is the issue of the responsible use of alcoholic beverages.

    The Bible is clear that drunkenness is wrong but also that Jesus and the early church drank alcoholic wine.

    While we do have biblical sanction to drink alcoholic beverages responsibly, it is sometimes more prudent that we abstain because of the situation. (And I don’t care to hear someone start blasting me for “situational ethics” because all ethical choices take place in “situations”.)

    The discussion of this topic could open the doors for a discussion on how to think and act Christianly in a post-modern world.
     
  9. dianetavegia

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    Baptist Believer...
    Since this is a college group, I think the ages will be 18 and up. The legal drinking age is 21 in every state I believe. Any implied endorsement of drinking to this age group could cause trouble.


    Just my thoughts...

    I disagree with several of you. I also believe we can thank Clinton for the 'certain sexual acts are not sex' train of thought. I'd certainly never heard that before MonicaGate.

    Diane
     
  10. Jim1999

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    Legal age to drink alcohol in Canada is 18. Many AMerican kids come over the border for that reason.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  11. Baptist Believer

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    Since this is a college group, I think the ages will be 18 and up. The legal drinking age is 21 in every state I believe. Any implied endorsement of drinking to this age group could cause trouble. </font>[/QUOTE]I couldn’t disagree more.

    Please think about what you are saying here…

    1.) Any discussion of the subject should necessarily include stressing obedience to the laws of the state.

    2.) Since it takes most students between 4 and 5 years to complete an undergraduate degree, at least half the students will be of legal drinking age (not to mention those who did not go to college immediately after high school). Furthermore, I think everyone recognizes that it is supremely easy for underage college students to gain access to alcoholic beverages because of the legal availability of alcohol to their peers. (By the way, that’s the main reason for raising the drinking age from 18 to 21 – to get more alcohol out of the hands of high schoolers.)

    3.) Even if students are not legally allowed to drink at this age, they are facing the prospect of drinking legally within 3 years. Shouldn’t we give them the tools to make appropriate choices before they face the issue when there is no legal basis to hinder them?

    4.) As far as “implied endorsement” goes, we need to be honest with what the Bible has to say even if it is “looser” than our personal ethical code. By discussing these issues honestly and biblically, including discussion of the implications and consequences of making ethical decisions, we enable college students to act from personal conviction instead of legalistic formulas that will fail them spiritually and/or practically.

    Final thought, let me cast your warning in terms of another important issue so you can see the fallacy:

    ‘Since this is a college group, I think most of the students will be unmarried. Since the Bible teaches that sexual intimacy among unmarried people is wrong, any implied endorsement of healthy and responsible sexual attitudes to this age group could cause trouble.’

    I hope I didn’t respond too strongly. :D

    I certainly did.

    Those kind of questions and attitudes were popular all the way through the 1970s and 1980s when I was in the youth group. Furthermore, my dad tells me similar things from when he was in public school back in the early 1930s through the start of WW II and when he taught biology and chemistry in public school in 1950. In fact, high schoolers so frequently had sex in a wooded area behind a hedge of bushes that teachers had to set up rotating schedules to patrol the area during their daily scheduled off time.

    Sexual immorality is nothing new in American life, no matter what those who cherish the 1940s and 1950s allege. It’s just out in the open now.

    And unfortunately churches rarely deal honestly and openly regarding sexual ethics with teens because they are afraid of putting ideas into their heads. Between normal and healthy hormonal changes, the fallen nature of humankind and the sexually overcharged perversions pumping through the mass media, it is absurd for us to believe that teens have no thoughts of sexual matters until some church leader or parent happens to mention it.
     
  12. Dr. Bob

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    Gray areas in the battle of legalism.

    Witnessing v studying
    Church attendance v work/studying
    Clothes
    Hair
    Music - rock, ccm
    Language - cuss words, vulgarisms
    Moral issues
     
  13. Maverick

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    There are no gray areas only people who do not know.
    Gray is light and darkness mixed. God is all light and no darkness. Hence go towards the Light and the darkness will flee and gray disappear. Most people just use gray to cover their pet sin or their laziness in studying.
     
  14. Baptist Believer

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    How did things go?
     
  15. Istherenotacause

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    A-MEN! and A-MEN! Exactly right! And there is no shadow of turning in Him. God sure doesn't change, but many would love to change Him to allow their indulgences. What some dare to call "moderation" has caused the downfall of the less aware of the pitfalls of ceratin indulgences. Am I a "legalist" to warn anyone regardless of their age of the "snake" lying in the grass?
     
  16. USN2Pulpit

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    Maverick and IsThereNotACause, I think you'll generally find agreement with your stand here, but I don't think that's what is being asked here. amen_corner's intention was to educate those college folks in the way that you put forth. In other words, how do we (specifics) fight the "appearance" of gray?
     

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