The news is always full of debates. Should gay marriage be legalized? How should our tax system works? What civil liberties are rights? Which ones are preferences?
When Noah Webster compiled the first Webster’s dictionary in the 1780s, he did something very American. Rather than attempting to create rules of usage, pronunciation, and spelling in his dictionary, he decided to simply recognize the way that most people spoke and wrote. He democratized the dictionary. This was a huge departure from the way it had always been done.
What Webster did in the eighteenth century may be parable for us in the twenty-first century. Rather than seeking answers as to what is right or wrong, our society prefers to look around and see what everyone else is doing. Rather than appealing to an authority, the thoughts and opinions of the people has become our de facto authority.
Let Biblical history warn us that the rule of the people is not always wise.
Judges 17:6 “Every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” Read the rest of the book of Judges and you’ll see how that worked out.
Proverbs 21:2 warns us, “Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the Lord ways the heart.”
Again in Proverbs 12:15, “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice.”
Let’s be people who seek out the council of God, not just the agreement of fellow man!