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Ethical Teaching

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Jesus does not provide an organized ethical system, but his ethical teachings are scattered throughout the Gospels. Sometimes they seem to be contradictory, until you look at them more closely. He emphasized the need for a new heart and the importance of loving God and our "neighbor." Jesus upheld the validity of the Law but was opposed to the oral traditions. 


The Teachings of Jesus

Part 8


I.  Ethical Teaching of Jesus

A.  Problems in Attempts to Arrive at an Ethical System

1.  Jesus never provided an organized ethical system.

2.  Ethical teachings of Jesus are scattered throughout the Gospels.

3.  Ethical teachings of Jesus are incomplete.

4.  Ethical teachings of Jesus seem at times to be contradictory.

5.  Ethical teachings of Jesus at times seem to be impossible.

B.  Attempts to Interpret the Ethical Teachings

1.  Catholic Interpretation

2.  Utopian Interpretation

3.  Liberal Interpretation

4.  Interim Ethic Interpretation

5.  Existentialist Interpretation

C.  Jesus and the Law

1.  Jesus upheld the eternal validity of the Law.

2.  Jesus by his practice taught the continual validity of the Law.

3.  At times Jesus seems to have rejected various aspects of the Law.

D.  Explanations of the Apparent Contradictions

1.  Jesus was opposed to the oral traditions but not to the written Law.

2.  Jesus distinguished between the civil and ceremonial aspects of the Law and the moral aspects of the Law.  The former was no longer binding, but the latter was.

E.  Summary of Jesus' Ethical Teaching

1.  Need for a new heart.

2.  Love Commandment

F.  The Eschatological Nature of Jesus' Ethical Teachings

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