Is Man Born Morally Good Or Evil? 人之初心本善还是心本恶?

有些人认为,当一个人出生的时候无所谓是善良的还是邪恶的。他们会说,人的道德标准完全是受环境的影响,或者说人是因为被教育成那个样子的。所以,如果一个人是被好的父母所教养,或者受一个好的环境的熏陶,他就会成为一个好人。如果一个人是被不好的父母所教养,或者在一个不好的环境下成长,他就会变成一个坏人。

有的人认为,当一个人出生的时候,他的心是善良的,是有好的道德标准的。然后在出生以后受他人的影响,被教育了去做坏事。这种坏思想的不断影响,以至于引导到对他人做可怕的事情。相比之下,绝大部分人都是好人,不会对其他人做损害人的事情。我觉得世界上大部分人都这么认为。但是这样的想法在逻辑上有一个问题。这样的想法是建立在我与他人的比较,从而得到什么是好的,什么是邪恶的。因此,我所定义的“好”和“邪恶”会根据与我比较的人而改变。

我相信对“好”与“邪恶”有一个比较正确的定义应该跳出我们个人的范围。道德上的“好”与“邪恶”应该是不受人们思想的改变而改变的,也不应该随着时间的改变而改变的。圣经告诉我们,世人都犯了罪(就是对上帝做了坏事、错事),亏缺了上帝的荣耀(圣经《罗马书》第三章第23节)。圣经中描写的“罪”是没有遵循上帝所规定的诫命,(不是我们平时所说的“犯法” 译者注);是违背或者悖逆这位创造宇宙万物的主的意愿。罪可以是我们撒一个谎、也可以是在考试时候作弊、也可以是偷窃、或者甚至杀人,这些都是罪。罪也可以是有些事情我们选择不去做,比如没有去爱他人、没有饶恕别人对你的不好、没有去敬拜上帝。耶稣甚至说了,罪不仅是因为有罪行,而且可以是我们的思想和态度。

《马太福音》第五章21~22节说,21 “你们听过有这样吩咐古人的话:不可杀人,杀人的必被判罪。’ 22 可是我告诉你们,凡是向弟兄发怒的,必被判罪。人若说弟兄是拉加,必被公议会审判;人若说弟兄是摩利,必难逃地狱的火。

《马太福音》第五章27~28节说,27 “你们听过有这样的吩咐:不可奸淫。28 可是我告诉你们,凡是看见妇女就动淫念的,心里已经犯了奸淫。

显而易见,上帝对“邪恶”的定义比人们的定义严厉得多了。我们常常把自己与坏人比较,然后对自己说,“我比他好多了”。我们对自己说,“我从来没有杀过人。”但是上帝问我们,“你有没有恨过人?你有没有对人发过怒?”“你有没有对那个人有过欲望?”“你有没有妒忌那人所拥有财物?”按照这个标准,我们马上就觉察到我们自己的罪性,确实应该受到上帝的审判。所以我们是不是生来就是这样的?我相信圣经上所说的,“是的,世人都是这样。”

《诗篇》第五十一篇第5节说,“我是在罪孽里生的。在我母亲怀胎的时候,就有了罪。

《罗马书》第三章10~12节说,“就如经上所记,没有义人,连一个也没有。 没有明白的,没有寻求上帝的。 都是偏离正路,一同变为无用。没有行善的,连一个也没有。

当上帝创造了天地,自从我们的先祖亚当和夏娃在伊甸园违背了上帝命令以来,(《创世纪》第一、二章),所有的人类就都继承了他们所犯的罪和罪性,违背上帝的意愿。我们出生就带着罪性,因此我们就自然而然地犯罪,不听从上帝的言语。我们自以为是个好人,我们想方设法来为我们的行为辩护。但是当我们明白了圣经的真理,我们必定看到我们自己邪恶的一面,确实知道自己是一个必须由上帝来拯救的罪人。上帝把拯救人类的好信息给了我们,这是何等美妙的事啊!上帝差派了耶稣把我们从罪里拯救出来。

《罗马书》第五章7~9节说,“为义人死,是少有的,为仁人死,或者有敢作的。 惟有基督在我们还作罪人的时候为我们死,上帝的爱就在此向我们显明了。 现在我们既靠着他的血称义,就更要借着他免去上帝的忿怒。


讨论问题:

1.        在没有上这堂课以前,你觉得人之初心本善还是心本恶?

2.        根据圣经,人是邪恶的还是良善的?

3.        你是否同意圣经的定义?

4.        如果圣经是对的,人心都是坏的,谁或者什么是人类的盼望?

5.        是什么阻拦了你接受耶稣基督为你的救主呢?

Some people believe that man is born morally neutral. He is neither good nor evil. They would say man is a product of his environment or the way he was raised. So if a person is raised by good parents or in a good environment he will be a good person. If a person is raised by bad parents or an environment of hate then he will be an evil person.

Some people believe that man is born morally good. They believe that all people are basically good at birth and are taught to be evil by others. This evil influence grows and leads some people to do horrible things against others. In comparison most people are good and would not do harm to others. I think the majority of the world believes this way. But, there is a weakness in this logic. The weakness is that I am comparing myself against other people as to what is good and what is evil. Logically, this means my definition of what is good or evil will change as to which person I am comparing myself.

I believe the safest solution is to define good and evil from something outside of ourselves. Moral goodness or evil should be defined by something that is forever true and above the thoughts of changing human opinion. The Bible says all men have sinned (done evil or wrong against God) and have fallen short of God’s glory. (Romans 3:23) The Bible describes sin as disobedience to the commands of God. It is disobedience or rebellion against the will of our Creator. Sin can be something we do, like telling a lie, cheating on a test, stealing, or murder. It can also be something we choose not to do, like loving others, forgiving others, or worshiping God. Jesus went so far as to say that sin is not only in our actions but in our thoughts and attitudes.

Matthew 5:21-22: “You have heard that it was said to our ancestors, Do not murder, and whoever murders will be subject to judgment. But I tell you, everyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.”

Matthew 5:27-28: “You have heard that it was said, Do not commit adultery. But I tell you, everyone who looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

Clearly, God’s definition of evil is much tougher than man’s definition. We compare ourselves to evil men and say to ourselves, “I am good compared to that man.” We say to ourselves, “I have never killed anyone.” In contrast, God says to us, “Have you ever hated that person? Have you ever been angry with that person? Have you ever greatly desired or lusted after that person? Have you been jealous over what belongs to that person?” By this standard we quickly begin to see that we are sinful and are deserving of God’s judgment. So, are we born this way? I believe the Bible says, “Yes, man is born this way.”

Psalm 51:5: Indeed, I was guilty when I was born; I was sinful when my mother conceived me.

Romans 3:10-12: as it is written: There is no one righteous, not even one. There is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. All have turned away; all alike have become useless. There is no one who does what is good, not even one.

Since the beginning, when our first ancestors Adam and Eve, rebelled and disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden. (Genesis 2-3) Every generation of men has inherited this fallen and evil nature to sin against the Creator. From birth we are born with a sinful nature and by nature we do evil and disobedience towards God. We consider ourselves good and we try to explain our behavior as being good. Yet, in understanding the truth of the Bible we must see ourselves as evil, as sinners in need of being rescued from certain destruction. How wonderful then the Good News that God sent someone to save us from our sins, someone to rescue us from certain death. . .He sent us Jesus!

Romans 5:7-9: For rarely will someone die for a just person—though for a good person perhaps someone might even dare to die. But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us! Much more then, since we have now been declared righteous by His blood, we will be saved through Him from wrath.


DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

1. Before today what did you think about the moral nature of man?

2. According to the Bible is man morally good or evil?

3. Do you agree with the Bible’s definition?

4. If the Bible is true, and man is sinful, what (or who) is man’s hope?

5. What keeps you from calling on Jesus to save you?

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