LOST AND FOUND VALUES
HH, Sir Godfrey Gregg D.Div
A tribute to the life, legacy and ministry of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (with Excerpts from “Rediscovering Lost Values” preached by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at Second Baptist Church, Detroit, Michigan, February 28, 1954) .
Scripture: Deuteronomy 6:4-9 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
Thought for Today: We are living in a period of immense prosperity for some and profound poverty for others. There is a great divide in our nation and the world and that divide is widening daily. We are also experiencing a rapid decline in moral values and good old fashioned respect. I cannot remember a time when public name-calling, character attacks and outright meanness were practised daily by elected officials and business leaders who hold the highest offices in our country. This erosion of values at the top has swept through our society like a tornado through a defenceless community. We see it everywhere in our lives. People behaving rudely, yelling profanities, fighting others and attempting the make their point by any means they choose. The result? A fundament loss of human decency, lack of respect for other people and indifference toward the laws of God. Where is the standard of moral law and values that were once part of the way we lived and taught our children to live? I submit that the standard has been lost because our society has strayed from practising God’s values from the Bible. Certainly, there are many people who practice the moral values declared in God’s Word, however, the soul of our nation is tainted by those who live lawlessly.
Dr. King stated, “The great problem facing modern man is that the means by which we live have out-distanced the spiritual ends for which we live.” In that moment, he revealed our focus on “means” or material things has exceeded of focus on spiritual values. When this happens in a society, people become so consumed with the pursuit of their rights and possessions that knowing and serving God and ones neighbours loses importance.
But do not despair, all is not lost! We as a people can find, practice and teach moral values again if we choose to return to the Bible as the basis for the way we live.
Dr. King expressed the same optimism later his sermon when He stated: “If we are to go forward if we are to make this a better world in which to live, we’ve got to go back. We’ve got to rediscover these precious values that we’ve left behind.”
In Deuteronomy 6, The Lord sums up this great moral duty when The Lord declares through Moses, that they must “Love the Lord with all of their heart, soul and strength…” He further commends the words to their hearts and commands them to teach these values to their children continually (at all times).
As he closed, Dr. King emphatically declares His faith in God to restore lost values by preaching” “I’m not going to put my ultimate faith in the little gods that can be destroyed in an atomic age, but the God who has been our help in the ages past, and our hope for years to come, and our shelter in the time of storm, and our eternal home.” May our values be restored and strengthened in God and God alone! Amen
It’s Time to Pray: Almighty God, the foundation and substance of all truth and righteous values come from you. Teach me your way and show me the paths that my life brings glory to Your Holy Name. Let You holy values of love, kindness, grace and patience be found in me. . .