The intention of this article is to identify the ways in which Jonathan Haidt’s Moral Foundation Theory is flawed. Prior to doing so, I will offer the premises and conclusion that I will build upon to identify the correct source of our objective moral grounding: God.
- If humanity has universal, objective moral values and obligations to do what’s right, there must be a universal source of righteousness that transcends generations.
- Humanity has universal, objective moral values and obligations to do what’s right.
- There is a universal and transcendent source of righteousness: God.
I define objective moral values as values about what’s good or bad, while objective moral obligations are duties regarding what’s right or wrong (c.f., Craig, 2008; 2010). To say they are objective is to say they do not vary as a function of anyone’s opinion.
Using the moral realism perspective, Hopster (2017, p. 764) further explains objectivity in morality. “Consider the claim that the Earth revolves around the sun: this claim is true, it states a fact, and this truth or fact is fully independent of what any agent thinks or feels about it. Similarly, moral realists maintain that moral truths or facts are fully independent of the attitudes of any agent.” Similarly, Street (2006) argued there are objective, “stance-independent” moral truths.
Support for premise #2
Multiple global studies have provided support for premise #2. A sampling follows.
Dahlsgaard, Peterson and Seligman (2005) examined the ancient texts from eight religious traditions (Christianity, Judaism, Athenian philosophy, Taoism, Confucianism, Islam, and Hinduism). The authors found six recurrent values: courage, temperance, justice, transcendence, humanity, and wisdom. They defined courage as emotional strengths that involve the exercise of will to accomplish goals in the face of opposition, external or internal. Examples include bravery, perseverance, and authenticity (honesty). They defined justice as civic strengths that underlie healthy community life. Examples include fairness, leadership, and citizenship or teamwork. They defined humanity as interpersonal strengths that involve “tending and befriending” others with the examples of love and kindness. They defined temperance as strengths that protect against excess with examples of forgiveness, humility, prudence and self-control. They define wisdom as cognitive strengths that entail the acquisition and use of knowledge. Examples included creativity, curiosity, judgment and providing counsel to others. They defined transcendence as strengths that forge connections to the larger universe and thereby provide meaning. Examples included gratitude, hope, and spirituality.
Other global studies have found similarly. In a survey using psychological, historical, juridical, theological, and ethnographical research, Westermarck (1906) identified universals in the approval of honesty, charity, mutual aid, and generosity, along with the prohibition of theft and homicide. Henrich and colleagues (2005) examined fifteen societies, finding that fairness and trust were exhibited in all. In multiple studies of hundreds of samples in eighty-two countries and representing culturally diverse people of varying ages, genders, occupations, and geographies, Schwartz (2012, p. 17) drew a conclusion that he considered “astonishing.” After ranking ten values in order of importance, results indicated universals in values. The vast majority ranked benevolence as the #1 and the most important value, followed by universalism and self-direction.
Along similar lines, Kinnear, Kernes, and Dautheribes (2000) consulted the religious texts and sacred writings of seven major world religions (Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Judaism, and Islam) to identify whether any universals could be identified. They further consulted atheist and humanist organizations, along with the United Nations. They found these commonalities:
Commitment to something greater than oneself
- To recognize the existence of and be committed to a Supreme Being, higher principle, transcendent purpose or meaning to one’s existence
- To seek the truth (or truths)
- To seek justice
Self-respect, but with humility, self-discipline, and acceptance of personal responsibility
- To respect and care for oneself
- To not exalt oneself or overindulge – to show humility and avoid gluttony, greed, or other forms of selfishness or self-centeredness
- To act in accordance with one’s conscience and to accept responsibility for one’s behavior
Respect and caring for others (i.e., the Golden Rule)
- To recognize the connectedness between all people
- To serve humankind and to be helpful to individuals
- To be caring, respectful, compassionate, tolerant, and forgiving of others
- To not hurt others (e.g., do not murder, abuse, steal from, cheat, or lie to others)
Caring for other living things and the environment
Psychologists Haidt and Joseph (2004) surveyed evolutionary theories about human and primate sociality, along with lists of virtues and taxonomies of morality from psychology and anthropology to moral concerns or virtues that were shared widely across cultures. They established five “foundations” of morality: care/harm, fairness/reciprocity, ingroup/loyalty, authority, and purity/sanctity. Graham, Haidt and Nosek (2009) identified political variations in the attention to the five foundations. People considered more liberal on the political spectrum were primarily concerned with care/harm and fairness/reciprocity, while more conservative individuals drew more evenly across all five foundations.
What grounds our objective moral values and duties?
Jonathan Haidt often makes the claim that the five aforementioned values are the “innate” foundations, or grounding, of our morality. He uses “social intuition theory” to make the claim that our moral intuitions about these values guide our reasoning. This argument is missing the mark. I would argue that our intuitions and reasoning are guided by our conscience. Our conscience is the foundation upon which our intuitions and reasoning are driven. Our intuitions inform our reasoning, which in turn inform our intuitions, which in turn inform reasoning. These mechanisms are part of the learning process, yet the process is driven by our conscience. When we align our intuitions and reasoning to our conscience, our very nature is closer in alignment with our Maker. Our Maker is the source of our conscience and the reason why we have a conscience. We are made in His image, which is why one of the unique features of our species is that we have a moral code and a conscience.
Some might argue that our intuitions are our conscience, but the two are distinct. Imagine yourself on the edge of a pond. You witness an alligator that grabs a little boy and drags him into the pond. Your intuitions are to protect yourself to stay alive for your family. You feel the strong intuitions to run and save yourself from the alligator. Fight or flight. You’ve been hard-wired to run away. Your intuitions are in “survival mode.” Yet your conscience calls on you to rescue the little boy. Your conscience is at a higher level than your intuitions, similar to Maslow’s self-actualization mode. Your conscience calls on you to risk your life to save the life of another.
My idea is not new. Consider Christian Synderesis. Zollo, Pellegrini and Ciappei (2017) identified the importance of bridging the gap between intuitive and emotional processes (moral intuitions) with conscious and rational processes (moral reasoning) to explain ethical decision-making. They related moral intuitions to Kantian universalism and moral reasoning to utilitarian ethics.
“Despite the different sophistications of the utilitarian approach, a common element of all these theories is that the agent is rational and able to evaluate the situation and its outcome. Definitely, such requisites are not met by talking about intuition, especially the ability to forecast and choose the preferable outcomes. Conversely, universalism imposes that every act is performed according to general and transcendental moral principles (Kant, Foundations of the metaphysics of morals, ed. orig. 1785; 1959)” (Zollo et al., 2017, p. 695).
The authors used an influential Christian moral social doctrine, Synderesis, to bridge the gap between the two viewpoints. Synderesis is “an innate human habit that fosters moral judgment and triggers the virtue of practical reason” (Zollo et al., 2017, p. 682). Synderesis is the “correct habit that regulates intuition due to its innate nature and it is present in every individual.” (Zollo, Pellegrini and Ciappei, 2017, p. 690).
In Summa Theologiae, Thomas Aquinas referred to Synderesis as the law of our mind, which is an awareness or understanding of the principles of human actions. Practical reasoning moves one from awareness of the principles to conclusions on actions or decisions. Conscience then forms a judgment on whether the actions or decisions are in alignment with one’s moral nature, whether they are right or wrong.
Using the popular “being” versus “doing” mode, consider that our conscience and intuitions are steeped within our nature, or being. Our reasoning (or goal-setting) is steeped in actions, or doing. Accordingly, grounding our morality in our reasoning (c.f., consequentialism, utilitarianism, the moral value itself) is flawed. It equates with establishing the goal or the value – and then saying the goal or value is also the source, or foundation of the goal or value. The argument is circular. To put it another way, setting a goal is an act, or “doing,” while the grounding is “being.” One cannot conflate the two. Doing focuses on the impersonal external world and the act of setting a goal or getting something done. Being focuses on what’s internal and personal to us, intrinsic to our very nature.
Speaking of nature
At this point in the argument, people who support the notion of unquided evolution would likely assert that our social development and heritable traits explain our objective moral values and duties to do what’s right. Yet even psychologists such as Jonathan Haidt and Stephen Pinker acknowledge the category error (Haidt, 2012; Osman & Weigmann, 2017). Haidt stated explicitly that his book was never meant to be prescriptive. It is only descriptive. Descriptive can only explain what is, while prescriptive explains what should be. Science does not have an explanation for why we know we should follow the Golden Rule. Science does not have an explanation for our origins either. It cannot explain why we all seek meaning and purpose in our lives. It can not speak to why we feel compelled to do other behaviors that might jeopardize our survival, such as risk one’s life to rescue another. The Bible answers those questions. Thank God.
The bottom line is we have universal moral values and duties to do what’s right – and their grounding is not explained in biology. Biology can only explain “what is” in nature and not “what ought to be.” Yet our conscience compels us to “do what’s right.” Our moral prescriptions (in “what ought to be” and “what’s right”) are informed by our conscience. God is the source of our conscience and of our objective moral values and duties. Nature is an insufficient explanation. Matter does not precede the mind. Mind precedes matter.
Craig, W.L. (2008). Reasonable Faith: Christian truth and apologetics. Wheaton, IL: Crossway.
Craig, W.L. (2010). On Guard: Defending your faith with reason and precision. Colorado Springs, Co.: David C. Cook.
Dahlsgaard, K., Peterson, C. & Seligman, M.E.P. (2005). Shared virtue: The convergence of valued human strengths across culture and history. Review of General Psychology, 9(3): 203-213.
Graham, J., Haidt, J., & Nosek, B.A. (2009). Liberals and conservatives rely on different sets of moral foundations. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 96 (5), 1029–1046.
Graham, J., Haidt, J., Koleva, S., Motyl, M., Iyer, R., Wojcik, S., & Ditto, P. H. (2013). Moral foundations theory: The pragmatic validity of moral pluralism. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 47, 55–130. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-407236-7.00002-4
Haidt, J., & Joseph, C. (2004). Intuitive ethics: How innately prepared intuitions generate culturally variable virtues. Daedalus: Special Issue on Human Nature, 133(4), 55–66.
Haidt, J. (2012). The righteous mind: Why good people are divided by politics and religion. New York, NY: Vintage.
Henrich, M.D., Boyd, R. Bowles, S., Camerer, C., Fehr, E., Gintis, H., McElreath, R., Alvard, M.,…Tracer, D. (2005). ‘Economic Man’ in cross-cultural perspective: Behavioral experiments in 15 small-scale societies. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 28(6): 795-855.
Hopster, J. (2017). Two accounts of moral objectivity: from attitude independence to standpoint invariance. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, 20: 763-780.
Osman, M. & Wiegmann, W. (2017). Explaining moral behavior: A minimal moral model. Experimental Psychology, 64 (2), 68-81.
Street, S. (2006). A Darwinian dilemma for realist theories of value. Philosophical Studies, 127(1),109–166.
Westermarck, E.A. (1906). The Origin and Development of the Moral Ideas. London, England: Macmillan.
Zollo, L., Pellegrini, M.M., and Ciappei, C. (2017). What sparks ethical decision making? The interplay between moral intuition and moral reasoning. Lessons from the Scholastic Doctrine. Journal of Business Ethics, 145, 681-700.
17 Replies to “Why Moral Foundations Theory is Flawed”
Is it possible to condense this into maybe 2 or 3 sentences? I’m not understanding
Consider the two premises and the conclusion. That’s the basic argument. I offered support for the 2nd premise and stated that the SOURCE of our universal and objective moral values and duties to do what’s right must ALSO transcend people, generations, and cultures.
Is an action or thing moral or immoral, good or evil because God say it…
Or does God say it because it is moral or immoral, good or evil?
That’s similar to the Euthyphro dilemma. It’s a false dichotomy, which should have a third option. God is the source and standard against which we judge morality.
So the third you offer is actually saying that it’s moral or immoral, good or evil because God says. (God is the ground of morality)
You’re saying literally the same thing in different words
Or perhaps you can explain the difference.
I’m just saying that the two choices given are not the only choices that should be given. I gave the third.
And I’m asking how that third differs from the 1st. Could you explain please?
Excellent analysis and conclusions. Love this: “Science does not have an explanation for why we know we should follow the Golden Rule.”
Christian Training Center
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Thank you Michael!
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I find it interesting how we Christians should know why we should follow the Golden Rule, but many times? Christians and Christianity has failed to do so.
How do we as Christians, deal and stand up to those who proclaim themselves Christians but do not follow the Golden Rule? The Christian preachers like say Rick Wiles, Franklin Graham Jr, Jim Bakker and other Christian pastors who called for a Civil War if Donald J Trump is removed from office under impeachment? Is this what they want to have done unto them? To have psychopaths go out and brutally butcher them because they stand up and defend someone who should not be defended by any Christian, Donald Trump, who has far proven? He is no Christian and never was. He has even admitted that he has never asked God or Jesus for forgiveness. Are these same pastors screaming for a Civil War in defense of Trump not violating the Golden Rule and other rules given to us by Jesus? And what should we as Christians do about them? And how fast did those who also proclaim themselves True Christians attack the editor of Christianity Today and their editorials on Trump who were right in what they said about Trump and Christians supporting and defending him. Is that also following the Golden Rule or any other commandments that Jesus gave to us? NO.
Or Christian pastors like Scott Lively, Matt Barber, Walid and Theodore Shoebat, the people of Westboro Baptist Church, Steven Anderson, Donnie Romero, Pat Robertson, Matthew McLaughlin, et al, who constantly violate our Lord and Saviors greatest commandment to love ALL our neighbors? Is it loving all of our neighbors when these Christian pastors go around screaming how certain people should be put to death? As an example? These hypocrites will condemn homosexuals to be stoned to death, and even work towards having laws passed to do so.Examples of this is Scott Lively and his Kill the Gays bill he helped get passed in Uganda and Matthew McLaughlin and his psychotic Sodomite Suppression Act ballot initiative he filed in California where he wanted Christians to have the right to walk up to anyone they deem displaying any affection towards a person of the same sex, pull out a gun and blow their heads off on the streets of California. They cherry picking bible verses to condemn homosexuals to death, while forgetting the OT teaching about what should also be done to adulterers, but when you bring this up to them? Why adulterers get a pass and the OT law on adultery should no longer be applied.
Should not we as True Christians stand up to all these Fake Christians and demand they stop preaching hate, bigotry and death in the name of Christianity and Jesus Christ? What exactly is our responsiblity for those who proclaim themselves Christians but are not acting anything like Christ? Who go around preaching hate, bigotry and death? Is it not about time we True Christians actually do what we are commanded to do and stand up to these Fake Christians? Is it not our moral responsibility in following the Golden Rule and the Lord and Saviors greatest commandment to stand up to these kinds of people?
Our own history of Christianity? Proves we as Christians? Did not follow the Golden Rule or any other rules or teachings of Jesus Christ in what we as Christians did to Pagans, Jews, Native Americans and many others, whom we thought were less than us, less human than us, and judged them worthy of death. We as Christians? Have a lot of innocent blood on our hands collectively. We as Christians, under the banner of Christianity? Have slaughtered millions in the name of Jesus. We put people to brutal death, both Protestants and Catholics during the Inquisitions. We tortured and executed scientists who were trying to teach us the truths that the earth was not flat and the sun did not revolve around the earth. We called scientists liars during the Black Death and in the end? They were proven right.
We enslaved people, justifying it by using the bible to do so.
We slaughtered millions upon millions of Native Americans, calling them the savages not worthy of life, of even less value than the black slaves. And justified these mass slaughters using the bible and the word of God, saying that God and Jesus gave us these lands to subdue and conquer.
Can we honestly look at the truth, the real history of how our religion actually rose to power? And worked to keep that power? All in direct contradiction of all the teachings of our Lord and Savior? Do you think Jesus would approve of what has been done in the name of Christianity by those who call themselves Christians? I do not think so.
Jesus taught, above all else, we were to love. To love ALL our neighbors, even our enemies. But how many times have Christians or Christianity? Truly followed these teachings of Jesus? And I believe? That people who do hate us? Have every right to do so, because? We were not truly loving our neighbors with what we as Christians, under the banner of Christianity has done to our neighbors.
This is something ALL Christians must stand up against, see to that it never happens again and stand up to all the Fake Christians who do preach hate, bigotry, misogyny and all kinds of contrary teachings of Jesus Christ, while they proclaim themselves “True Christians”. We need to truly follow the teachings of Jesus and any person who proclaims themselves Christians, yet act otherwise? WE as Christians MUST stand up to them. Expose them. Teach them the right teachings of love, and if they still refuse? Reject and ostrasize them and call them out each and every time they preach hate and death in the name of Jesus Christ and Christianity. That is our moral duty under the Golden Rule.
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True. You pose some very difficult questions. But I’d rather call out those who deny God and Jesus altogether. I consider myself a “moderate” in politics and didn’t vote for Trump, but I do find it encouraging that he wants to shift some policies to help the unborn. I do believe we should call out Westboro types too. They’re hurting us quite a bit.
I find the hypocrisy of us Christians on the topic of abortion outrageous to tell you the truth.
How many times in the bible did God command his followers to rip the fetuses out of pregnant women? Tiphsah women had this done to them as well as many other people. Examples of this is Hosea 9:11-16, Hosea 13:16, Numbers 31:17, 1 Samuel 15:3 and here are verses where God is praised for slaughtering babies and fetuses Psalms 135:8 & 136:10. In Psalms 137:9 god commands children to be dashed upon rocks. In the Noah Flood story? How many pregnant women were killed by drowning? Is that not also abortion?
How many abortions have Christians historically performed on Pagans, Native Americans, Jews and others in our history? Far too many.
And? It was actually not until Ronald Reagan and the rise of the Moral Majority that Christians even spoke out against abortion and before this? Actually supported and defended a woman’s right to abortion.
And another fact? 70% of women in the United States who have abortions? Proclaim themselves Christians.
70% of Women Who Get Abortions Identify as Christians, Survey Finds
And while I agree that all life, including the fetus is sacred? We as Christians? Are very hypocritical when it comes time to abortion. We fight against one thing that actually has been proven to cut down on abortions, real sex education in our public schools. It is a far proven fact that us Christians pushing abstinence only sex education? Has caused greater harm than teaching these students the real facts on sex. Including? Birth control. We should be teaching these children, in our homes and our schools, the great responsibility that actually comes with having sex. We should teach them the facts and truths about sex, including preventing unwanted pregnancies. We must do all we can to teach our children facts and truths and not just tell them that they should wait until marriage to have sex. I mean far too many of our “Christian” leader examples show how these leaders themselves are adulterers and that Christian marriage ends 50% of the time in divorce. How do we show these children the truths of marriage, etc when we cannot even keep the teachings ourselves. The kids see this hypocrisy and wants nothing then to do with Christians or Christianity.
So how do we justify our stance against abortion, when God himself not only commanded his followers that fetuses be ripped from the wombs of pregnant women and God himself performed abortions during Noah’s flood and all the abortions we Christians have committed against others in our history? Or how we want to stop abortions yet also stop true sex education in our public schools, which has been proven to go a long way in preventing unwanted pregnancies in the first place?
By standing up to these False Christians? These wolves in sheeps clothings? Who are not Christian in any sense or meaning of what it is to be a True Christian? That above all else? We are to live Jesus greatest commandments of loving God with all our hearts, all our minds, all our souls and all our bodies, and to love all our neighbors as we do God, with all our hearts, all our minds, all our souls and all our bodies, and as we love ourselves. That we are NOT to go around spreading hate, death and vile speech, nor defend and support those who do. We are to stand up to them, as called for by Jesus and the New Testament. We are to call them out.
Why are we to do this? Because honestly? If we do not? Then that brings down upon us wrath. God and Jesus are PISSED at what Fake Christians are doing in their name and they are pissed at us True Christians for not having the guts and balls to stand up to these Fake Christians who bring such harm to others.
We are allowing these False Christians, these wolves in sheep clothings, to bring harm upon our beliefs and ways of life. On how we are to truly live, not in hate, not in anger, not in going after people and bringing harm to them. Not in demanding certain classes of people should be put to brutal deaths based on their hypocritical cherry picking bible verses. We are in fact? Commanded by God and Jesus to stand up to them. We are commanded to call them out. We are not to be sadly, like our ancestors of Christianity did to bring the Gospel to the World! That was wrong and caused great harm to the name of Jesus and Christianity and Christians. Plain and simple. If we as Christians are honest with ourselves? Then we have to admit how the Gospel was spread and seek to correct all the harm that was done by how it was actually spread. We were not to spread the Gospel by force, we were to spread it by love, by showing love in all our actions, in everything we do. We were commanded to turn the other cheek and love our enemy and pray for them.
If you dare call yourself a True Christian? Then one of the things you must accept as one of your duties? Is to stand up to the Fake Christians and put a stop to their evil in the name of God and Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. They are our Masters, they are our guides. Remember what Jesus did to the money changers and the fake leaders of his day? Was he one bit happy with them? Heck no. And neither should we be happy with those who proclaim themselves Christians, but by their thoughts, words, actions and deeds? Prove they are anything but. And we are to stand up to them as well as to present the Gospel of Jesus to others in at all times? Love.
Dr Martin Luther King Jr said it best for those of us True Christians who refuse to speak out against the Fake Christians.
“He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it, is actually cooperating with it.”
I refuse to sit here and passively accept evil being spread by those who proclaim themselves Christians, but by their thoughts, words, actions and deeds? Prove they are anything but a Christian. I refuse to accept the evil of Fake Christians spreading their hate, their bigotry, their misogyny and all other things which goes against everything that Jesus Christ taught and I will protest against it and I certainly will never cooperate with it.
If we as True Christians seek to change the way we are perceived and outright hated because of the crap these Fake Christians spread? Then we must do all we can to stand up to them and follow the words of Dr Martin Luther King Jr and protest against them and put a stop to them.
Yet? Which moral guides and laws of the bible should we adhere to?
The Old Testament moral guide is different than the new moral guidance Jesus Christ gave to us in the New Testament.
The moral guides in the OT were that we were to:
1. Stone to death our children who were mouthy.
2. Stone to death adulterers, homosexuals, etc.
3. Stone to death women who were raped in a field yet did not scream loud enough to be heard, were to be stoned to death for adultery.
4. Another example of moral guidance of the OT was when in response to the cries of the Prophet Elisha? God sent two she bears to rip to shreds and devour 42 children for making a joke about Elisha’s bald head.
5. You shall not eat any fish of the seas or lakes without scales or fins, but we violate that one daily.
6. You shall not eat the flesh of a pig or touch it’s skin. But seriously? How many Christians follow this moral guide?
7. You shall not wear clothes of mixed fabrics, or women shall not wear men’s clothes, or you shall not plant two different crops in the same field, etc.
8. Acts of revenge were also allowed under the OT moral code. An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. Yet? Jesus changed this too when he came.
All of these are moral codes given to us in the OT and yet? How many Christians actually follow all these moral codes?
Yet? When Jesus came? He actually changed the very essence of all those OT moral codes with his greatest commandment, his teachings about what you are to do with your enemies, never judging others, etc.
Jesus stated, essentially, that in all things you do? Do so in love, even if you are going to apply the law of the OT and the laws of the Prophets. It is not loving to stone your chilld to death for being mouthy is it? It is not loving to have a girl who was raped to be forced to marry her rapist. It is not loving to sick two she bears on children to have them ripped apart for just making a joke about a prophets bald head is it? Is it loving to put to death homosexuals or adulterers? Apparently according to Jesus? That is a resounding no.
Matthew 22:36-40: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Luke 6:27-36:27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
Matthew 25: 35-40: 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ 37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
In the OT? We were to put to death those who disobeyed the teachings. In the NT? We are told we are to go and talk to them. To bring others with us to talk to them. And do this at least three times, if not more, all the time, in love. But in the end? If they refuse to correct? We are to turn our backs on them, but always leaving the door open in love in case they do learn to change from their errors.
Matthew 18:15-17: “If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother. “But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that BY THE MOUTH OF TWO OR THREE WITNESSES EVERY FACT MAY BE CONFIRMED. “If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
So how do we justify the teachings of the OT, the moral code of the OT? And the laws of God and the Prophets of the OT with what Jesus teaches in the NT which? In essence? Contradicts all the moral code punishments of the OT in replacement of true forgiveness and love?
Whose moral code do we follow? The OT or the NT?