In 1969 Frank Sinatra, who was one of America’s best-known entertainers, recorded a song that not only was a hit, but became his signature song, and a fan favorite, “My Way.”
“I did it my way,” embodies a rugged individualism. Right or wrong, the philosophy of “my way,” forges ahead through life with self-determination, self-will, and an egomaniac pigheadedness. Regardless of the consequences. A quick google search regarding Sinatra’s personal life might suggest the way of “My Way,” is not the best way.
In today’s Bible reading from Proverbs, the wise man confirms the danger of blindly pursuing “My Way.”
There is a way that seems right to a man,
but its end is the way to death.”
This same proverb is repeated in 16:12. Additional proverbs warn against the foolish and dangerous pursuit of the “My Way” mantra.
There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes,
Yet is not washed from its filthiness.
The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
But he who heeds counsel is wise.
Every way of a man is right in his own eyes,
But the Lord weighs the hearts.
Unfortunately what is right today is often influenced by relativism. Is something right or wrong? “Well, it depends,” some say. It depends on the situation. The circumstances. Your own personal opinion. Culture. Political correctness. Justification for this approach to life goes like this: “What’s right for me, may not be right for you. And what’s right for you may not be right for me.”
It’s the “My Way” wisdom of the world. Yet, what looks good, feels good, or sounds good, may not be right in the sight of God.
It seems right to engage in whatever feels good.
It seems right to be true to yourself.
It seems right to pursue whatever makes you happy.
It seems right to attend the church of your choice.
It seems right to worship in a way that makes me feel good.
It seems right to live my life however I please.
It seems right that we need to change with the times and not be burdened with outdated Bible doctrines.
It seems right that I’m unhappy in my marriage. I should find a partner that makes me happy.
It seems right that my sexual preferences and relationships are my business. And no one else’s.
It seems right that God should accept me “Just As I Am,” without changing, or conforming to a bunch of narrow-minded rules by propagated by preachers and pastors.
It seems right that there are “many ways to God,” just like “all roads lead to Rome.”
It seems right that the church ought to change with the times, especially in terms of morality, marriage, and a more modern mission.
Just because it seems right, doesn’t mean it really is right. At least not in the eyes of God. The “My Way” highway, that seems right, may, in fact, be the highway to Hell. Of course, that’s another issue. It doesn’t seem right to our culture that a loving God, would punish anyone. Certainly not for eternity. Yet, the Bible clearly teaches that our sins are not only worthy of death, but everlasting punishment.
These opposing ways of thinking return to the issue of authority. Is there a basis for determining right and wrong? For truth? A standard that is applicable to all people for every generation?
We affirm God’s Word is that standard. And He has revealed His will for our lives in the book we call the Bible.
His way provides hope. Gives true meaning to life. And leads to a heavenly home of bliss, blessedness and perpetual beauty.
My way leads to death.
My Way? Or His way? The choice is yours.
–Ken Weliever, The Preachermn