In our 21st century modern world most professional careers require continuing education in ‘ethics,’ though there is little evidence that the courses do anything to change the heart of the persons mandated to take them. Put in another way, in most cities and countries a significant percentage of their serious criminals are incarcerated and prevented from harming society; however, willful sinners are everywhere in every country, in every city, in uncontrollable numbers, and they significantly affect society. They affect not only the spirit of the world, but the culture and laws of the world.
Society still discriminates against and seeks to monitor and control many of these sinners that they label as criminals, lawbreakers, such as thieves and murders. But even there we treat ‘non-violent’ white collar robbers who break into people’s investments different than common burglars who break into people’s homes. Of course, the threat to lives needs to be protected and understood that a severe price will be paid by those that attempt such actions, yet professionals frequently commit crimes because they often have little chance of being caught and the penalties are rarely even comparably severe.
But what are the effects of certain non-criminal willful sins by professionals. Not just those that care little for a society’s or corporation’s ethics – moral principles or rules that govern behavior or conduct in that profession or occupation, but more so, of those that break the moral codes (ethical, righteous principles, standards, laws) or commands of Almighty God. And here not speaking of the standard of the “law of Christ” that “bear (carry) each other’s burdens (Galatians 6:2), or of displaying ultimate love, of having a willingness to “lay down our lives for our brethren (brothers and sisters). As the Scriptures say, “that if anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister (‘love your neighbor’) in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth (1John 3:16-18).”
But there are harmful actions that only rise to the level that surpass basic righteous and crosses the line into the vast territory no longer under the blood of Christ Jesus. “For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment and fiery indignation… (Hebrews 10:26);” for “those that believe in Christ are not condemned (if they repent from a life of willful sin), but people who do not believe are condemned already, because they do not believe in the name of the only begotten Son of God… that the Light has come into the world, and they love the darkness rather than the light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil (sin) hates the light… (John 3:18-20).”
But even not speaking of faith in Christ, but of actions that will separate those spoken of by the prophet Daniel, “some will rise to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt (Daniel 12:2),” or which John said, “those who have done what is good will rise to live, and those who have done what is evil will rise to be condemned (John 5:29),” the apostle Paul said, “Do you not know that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or the abusive, or slanderers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).”
“Walk in the Spirit (of the Lord), and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts (wars) against the Spirit… The works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I have told you… that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. Those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its (evil) passions and desires… (Galatians 5:16-22).” Thus, the same Spirit in Paul said to the Romans, “Do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit, so that the righteous standard of the law (moral law of righteousness) might be fulfilled in us (Romans 8:4-5).”
For this reason Moses warned and instructed the children of Israel, “Hear now (listen), Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and keep the commandments of the Lord… for your own good (Deuteronomy 10:12-13).” Moses understood, as did the apostles and prophets of the Lord God, that it is not possible to keep the commandments of the Lord without walking in His ways and having the guidance of His Word and Spirit.
It is a sad state of the world we live in, for so many have forsaken God and fallen away for righteousness, it is not surprising to those who understand that “many shall go the broad way to destruction (Matthew 7:13),” or that in the “last days many will fall away (or abandon) from the faith (1Tim. 4:1-3; 2 Thes. 2:3),” but it still hurts to see such loss and such disregard for respect and righteousness, especially among professionals that having higher levels of responsibility to society. And of course, faith in Christ is required to receive that fullness of the Spirit of the Lord that is needed most often to see truth, receive wisdom and endure through this world. However, even with the basic conscience provided to mankind and the vast displays of “clearly seen creation of the world” mankind is “without excuse (Romans 1:20).” Though the “just shall live by faith (Rom. 1:17),” even the sinner must find their way to following basic morals, or they are lost to the flesh before even getting to the argument or requirement of faith in Christ and Almighty God.
And what are some of these violations against the ethics and morals of God and man? “You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. You shall not covet your neighbor’s …things” (including status or position). Exodus 20. And these are common to all mankind. However, it is especially distressing and harmful in at least a divisive way (“watch out for those who cause divisions” – Romans 16:17) when corporate leaders, politicians and the media bear false witness, covet other’s statuses and positions or steal what is not theirs.
Both media and political leaders are in positions that they move masses of people by what they say and do. And for these reasons alone society must continue to monitor them and hold them to a higher standard of accountability. When they act or speak against others in like positions, or against the truth, or willfully or in ignorance criticize others without fairness, understand or presenting both sides of the case they not only show their flaw of favoritism, but also their lack of professional responsibility. And these actions often are what continue to divide nations and cause contentions.