Sunday, May 27, 2012

Do you know the difference between right and wrong?

I was reading the most recent issue of Focus on the Family's magazine, Thriving Family. Like most mothers, I constantly worry about my children and if I'm leading them in the way that they should go. This particular issue had an article that I was very surprised to read. Apparently, parents are no longer teaching their children the difference between right and wrong. The article included a quote about how the only thing young adults had to go on was their gut feelings on whether something was right and wrong.

  The Bible tells us in Proverbs 22:6, "Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it." We are instructed to teach a child the way he should go, the right way.

My mother always took the time when I was young and in to my teen years to make sure I understood when I was wrong and how to make amends. This is our job as parents, one given to us by God.

What are your thoughts? Is this a surprise to you as well? I welcome your comments. :)


  1. One of my husband's cousins actually told us that they don't tell their children no. They don't want to harm their self esteem. I was flabbergasted! How in the world does a 3 year old know what is right or wrong and how are they going to turn out without this correction. In a few years we are going to find out and it won't be pretty.

  2. Without reading the original article I'm not sure what their exact take on this is, but I was thinking about how this may not be as cut & dry as it sounds at first. Of course we should teach children right & wrong. That's a no brainer. But maybe it's the manner and extent that's questionable.

    To try and come up with a standard for general understanding of right & wrong I wonder how someone would behave if they could not differentiate between the two. They would most likely be a mentally impaired criminal. I think we can all agree that something "wrong" would be doing something that hurts another being, be that mentally or physically. Most other rights & wrongs I think of are simply opinions.

    Some people think homosexuality is wrong. Some think organized religion is wrong. Some people think it's wrong to drink milk. Most things that some think are right or wrong are not agreed on by everyone. More so, they tend to be things people do or the way they live and calling them wrong is hurtful. If I said "I don't think I'd ever home school my kids" that wouldn't sound near as harsh as if I followed it with "I don't think it's right." Now it's gone from a harmless opinion to an offensive comment.

    Words like good & bad, wrong & right; it's probably good to use them less and simply lead by example.

    Also, if you say, don't hit your brother and they ask why? If you say because it's wrong, to a little kid that might just be the same as telling them because I said so. They do have to grasp and understand what right and wrong really mean outside of just words anyway. It must be something we can teach without trying very hard or a conclusion people naturally come to anyway if the few people who can't grasp it are the criminally insane.

    1. Jenny, thank you so much for your insight. I think the basics of right and wrong are not being taught, like stealing for instance and I believe that is what the article was talking about.

      They said that kids are stealing music and feel that it is ok because the music companies are "big, corporations that have enough money." and "I want it and I'm not hurting anyone so it is ok." But it is still stealing. Most of us have stolen something at some point in our lives, but the parents are teaching them that it is alright in this situation. But it isn't alright to steal. It is wrong.