The responsibility of helping and caring for others is
central to Christian ethics; it is about the loving care of others.
Therefore our concern for each other fulfils the law of
Christ. William Barclay in his book "Ethics in a Permissive Society" says the
basis Christian ethic is concern.
. the basis of the Christian ethic is clear- the
basis of the Christian ethic is concern. Here is the essence of three of the
great parables of Jesus. In the parable of the sheep and the goats (Matthew
25.31-46), the standard of the final judgment of men is quite simply: Were you
concerned about people in trouble? In the parable of the rich man and Lazarus
(Luke 16.19-30) there is not the slightest indication that the rich man was in
any way cruel to Lazarus. The trouble was that he never noticed the existence
of Lazarus. Lazarus was there in poverty and pain and the rich man simply
accepted him as part of the landscape; he was not in the least concerned; and
in the parable he finished up in hell.
The third parable is that of the Good Samaritan (Luke
10.29-37). The whole point of the parable is the concern of the Samaritan.
While the others passed by on the other side, concerned only to avoid all
contact with suffering, the Samaritan was concerned and did something.
William Booth would always deny that the vast and wide
ranging work of the Salvation Army was planned. He used to say:
We saw the need. We saw the people starving, we saw
people going about half-naked, people doing sweated labour; and we set about
bringing a remedy for these things. We were obliged-there was a compulsion. How
could one do anything else?
But the whole trouble is that plenty of people can do
something else - they can do nothing. It was this concern that haunted a man
like William Booth."
The root of Christian ethics is Christ in that it is he who
has set the standard for our conduct and behaviour by his example and it is he
who enables, encourages and empowers people to occasionally touch the standard
that God has set for mankind.