During the last week or two in the UK the story of Jimmy Saville the former DJ, entertainer, and family show host has been unravelling at a terrific rate. Once feted for his great heart and fund raising endeavours for those in need, suddenly the story has moved in a totally different direction – that of the sexual predator.
Saville was a product of the amoral generation of 1960’s/70’s/80’s, the generation of so-called, free love. This was a love that didn’t believe in the boundaries of the former generation, rather it saw them as inhibiting and stifling to true love. This new approach to love wanted to be free to move in and out of relationships without any commitment or obligations, and be able to explore sex with whom and however and whenever it wanted.
The problem the amoral generation now faces (implied by one former DJ when he said that what went on in the studio was part of the culture of the time) is the how of moral judgements. Suddenly it seems to have woken up to the fact that there has to be boundaries, that it’s not right that anything goes. But where do you go? Having rejected the old boundaries and replaced them with vague notions of, ‘so long as you love, and no-one gets hurt’ and ‘guidance’ or ‘prevention’ it seems we are now struggling to find a way back.
One thing this does show us (however much some might like to deny it) is that deep within humanity there is a moral conscience, the problem is that it is marred, faulty and incapable of fully determining right and wrong without outside help – “the heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked.” Jeremiah 17:9.
This is where revelation comes in. We need a word from outside, from someone above and beyond ourselves. This is where the Bible comes in – as various confessions of the church have it expressed it down the years: “We believe in the Bible as the Word of God supreme in authority in all matters of faith and conduct.” It is God’s Word. It is an authoritative word, and we need it.
Things are not as they were intended to be. Humanity it tells us has sinned and fallen short of God’s glory (his glorious intention) and as a result humanities moral compass is somewhat skewed and needs informing. For this reason God gave us the 10 commandments along with other aspects of how we should conduct ourselves. They were not designed to be kill joys as the popular notion goes, but to enable correct, proper, and healthy relationships, and the proper functioning of human life and relationships at all levels of society.