New Vs. Old

9:30 am holiness, morals, old

Steve Turner in his book, Popcultured, makes reference to a psychological ploy used by advertisers to sway consumers. The ploy is called, psychological obsolescence. Turner states that advertisers had to make consumers embarrassed at using clothes or products that were not the “latest thing.” One American advertisng executive of the period said, “What makes this country great is the creation of wants and desires, the creation of dissatisfaction with the old and outmoded” (Popcultured, p. 166). The basic concept advertisers must convince consumers to accept is that newer is better, while older is obsolete. The old adage, “out with the old and in with the new,” applies here.
Could this ploy also be used to target religious beliefs and values? It certainly is. We must be careful that we do not attempt to destroy moral standards that God Himself has commanded. Just because a moral belief is old does not mean that it should be discarded. God-given traditions are still binding on men today. Paul writes, “Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle” (II Thess. 2:15). There is a difference between the traditions (apostolic doctrines) of God and the traditions of men. The traditions of men are vain. “But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Matt. 15:1-9, esp. v. 9). Being stedfast in the apostle’s teaching is an essential aspect of faithfulness to God (Acts 2:42, “And they continued stefastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers”).
Conformity to God’s Will necessitates going back to His Word! The culture in which we live is driven by satisfaction of the lusts of the flesh. While some view moral laxity as progressive, in reality it is regressive. We are not moving our culture or community forward when we sink into the depths of wickedness and moral corruption. In reality, we are going back to the time before the flood or back to Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 6 and 19). Rather than jettison the old, we might attempt to learn from it.
Moral progress is Christlikeness! Jesus lived a pure and sinless life (Heb. 4:15, I Pet. 2:21-22). He calls us to follow Him. This means we must listen and obey His teaching and pursue the example He established. He calls us to holiness (I Thess. 4:7). True reformation of human nature occurs only when we answer that call and “cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (II Cor. 7:1).

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