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Catholic social teaching is a “both-and,” not an “either-or”

Each solution may be appropriate in different situations with different children. Men and women are equal in value and dignity before God, but men and women also have different roles in marriage as part of the way God created us from the beginning. Male leadership or headship in marriage did not come about as a result of sin, but existed in the relationship between Adam and Eve that was established by God before sin entered the world.

This is evident from ten different factors in the biblical text. In the biblical pattern for marriage, the husband also has the primary responsibility to provide for and protect his wife and family, and the wife also has the primary responsibility to care for the home and to nurture children. The equality and differences between men and women reflect the equality and differences in the Trinity.

MORAL ISSUES: The Church's View Point on Contemporary Issues - Fr. Markos R. Hanna - كتب Google

The equality and differences between men and women are created by God and we should see them as very good. God established civil government as a blessing to human beings, to protect us against the great evil of anarchy. Governments should punish evil and encourage good, executing justice on wrongdoers and defending the weak and defenseless.

God is sovereign over all nations even today. Citizens should obey the laws of the government except in certain circumstances. It is important for governments to safeguard human liberty, which is essential to human flourishing on the earth. However, government cannot save people or fundamentally change human hearts. Governments should however support and encourage bona fide religious groups in general. It is wise for governments to establish a strong and clear separation of powers, and even rulers must be subject to the rule of law.

Governments should be chosen by the consent of the people.

Nations should value patriotism. Christians should seek to influence governments for good.

Moral Issues: The Church's View Point on Contemporary Issues

Christians have influenced civil governments positively throughout history. In the workplace, employees should be subject to the authority of their supervisors. They should not steal but should work diligently as serving Christ. Employers should treat their employees fairly, knowing that God will repay their good and evil deeds. With respect to the church, church members should be subject to the authority of the elders, and elders should exercise their authority willingly, eagerly, and as examples to others.

With respect to schools, Scripture does not contain explicit teachings about the authority of teachers with respect to their students, but in a school situation parents may rightfully entrust some of their parental authority to teachers.

Students should be submissive to the authority of their teachers, should honor them, and should work hard on their academic work, as serving the Lord. That principle is reaffirmed in Romans —4. The commandment against murder Ex. Governments have a responsibility to defend their nations against attacks by other nations with military forces if necessary.

But it is morally wrong to serve in a war that is clearly unjust. The pacifist arguments promoted by Jim Wallis, Greg Boyd, and others are not persuasive. Now that nuclear weapons exist in the world, it is necessary for some peace-loving nations to have them in order to defend against potential aggressors.

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In addition, antimissile defense systems should continue to be developed and strengthened. Nations should not send women into combat situations. Other passages in Scripture encourage escaping from danger or even using force in self-defense if necessary, and other passages encourage us to defend other people against wrongful attacks. However, Christians should not retaliate when persecuted specifically for their Christian faith.

If using physical force in self-defense is morally right, then use of a legally permitted weapon in self-defense is also morally right, since a weapon can overcome great inequalities in size or strength. Individual Christians will come to different conclusions about whether it is wise to own a gun for self-defense.

Several passages in the Bible indicate that an unborn child should be thought of and protected as a person from the moment of conception. There is increasing scientific evidence supporting the distinct identity of the unborn child. Objections to this viewpoint are not persuasive. Therefore abortion is the wrongful taking of an innocent human life. However, abortion to save the life of the mother is morally justified because it involves making a choice between one person dying and two persons dying.

Governments should give legal protections to the lives of people within their countries, including unborn children. Objections to this position are considered and found to be unpersuasive. However, there is a clear distinction between killing someone and letting someone die. We can enumerate some circumstances in which it is right to allow a person to die.

Scripture never views suicide positively. People who commit suicide injure other people very deeply, though they can be forgiven if they were believers in Christ. Still, the Bible reveals several blessings that accompany the process of aging, including gratitude for the dignity that belongs to the physical signs of aging. However, the use of dental braces, hair dye, and cosmetic surgery can be morally good choices in some circumstances.

Christian should not fear death, but it is right for us to experience both grief and joy when believing loved ones die.

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Because all human beings are made in the image of God and all have descended from Adam, the Bible provides no basis for the favoring of or discrimination against any groups of people on the basis of their racial backgrounds. All human beings are worthy of honor and respect. There are several examples of interracial marriage viewed positively in Scripture.

Good health habits include a healthy diet, physical exercise, sleep, and vaccinations. Christians can have legitimate differences of opinion regarding organic foods. The Old Testament prohibition against tattoos Lev. Circumcision is no longer commanded by God in the New Testament, but brings several health benefits.

There is an interrelationship between bodily health and spiritual health. God often works through us in spite of physical weakness or illness. The Bible clearly forbids drunkenness and contains frequent warnings against the dangers of alcohol, but other passages view the moderate use of alcohol more positively. Individual Christians will reach different conclusions about whether they should practice moderate use of alcohol or total abstinence.

Churches should not require total abstinence as a condition of membership because such a requirement cannot be demonstrated from Scripture.

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Several strands of biblical teaching affirm that Christians should not use illicit recreational drugs. Christians should not support the legalization of recreational marijuana, for several reasons, but Christians should have no objection to a genuinely medical use of marijuana if it can be effectively regulated by law in the same way as all other prescription medicines, and if widespread abuse can be prevented. Marriage according to Scripture is the legal union of a man and woman as husband and wife. It is not merely a human agreement but is also a covenant made before God.

Some kind of public awareness is necessary for a marriage to occur, and sexual intercourse alone does not constitute a marriage. Marriage pictures the relationship between Christ and the church. Christians should only marry other Christians.


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Sexual intimacy within marriage was created by God and is fundamentally good. Not surprisingly, recent studies indicate that faithful married couples have the highest levels of sexual fulfillment. Other sexual sins prohibited by Scripture include incest, homosexuality, and cohabitation before marriage. The New Testament highly values singleness as well as marriage. Civil governments should define marriage for all citizens. Scripture views children not as a burden but as a great blessing.

The world is far from being overpopulated. Birth control for a limited time is morally permissible, but some forms of birth control are morally unacceptable because they cause the death of a newly-conceived child. Modern medicine in general is morally good, and it is right to use medical solutions to infertility, but within the constraints of other moral principles in Scripture, including the protection of human life and the protection of marriage.

Morally acceptable types of reproductive technology include, in appropriate circumstances, artificial insemination by husband, in vitro fertilization without the destruction of embryos, embryo adoption, and prefertilization genetic screening for genetic diseases. Morally unacceptable types of reproductive technology include in vitro fertilization with selective reduction, artificial insemination by donor, surrogate motherhood, and cloning.

Scripture views adoption as a wonderful blessing both for parents and for the children who are adopted. It is appropriate for governments to make and enforce reasonable laws restricting the production and sale of pornography. The rate of divorce among Christians who attend church regularly is far smaller than that of the general population.

Divorce commonly brings many harmful consequences. In some situations, God tolerated and regulated divorce in the Old Testament.