Study Materials


Are Good Morals Enough?

            Statement: Some have in mind that all there is to being a Christian is simply being a good moral person. Many believe that as long as you are honest, pay your debts, take care of your family, be a good citizen, and maybe give to a charity once in a while, that this is all God requires. There is something praise worthy to be said about people that are morally good and upright; for many have left even that. However, though moral goodness is necessary to be pleasing to God, being a Christian requires more than moral goodness.

The fact that moral goodness does not save can be seen in the New Testament example of Cornelius. The Scriptures tell us that Cornelius was "a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always" (Acts 10:2). Here was a good moral man by anyone's standard. But Cornelius was not saved as a result of his moral goodness; for he was told to send for Peter at Joppa that he might come and tell him words by which he and his household might be saved (Acts 11:13-14). It was only when Cornelius heard and obeyed the gospel of Christ, being baptized, that he was saved (Acts 10:48).
There are many good moral people who don't have any spirituality about them. There are a lot of folks who are good, honest people, who have never submitted to God's will and are not interested in worshipping and serving Him. It is no wonder that Jesus declared, "Not every one who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven" (Matt. 7:21).
If good morals were all that God required for salvation, then Jesus would not have had to die. But good morals do not wipe away one's sin, the blood of Jesus does that, and one must come to it through repentance and baptism (Rom. 6:3-5, Gal. 3:26-27).  Thus, good morals are not enough, we must submit to God and receive pardon for sin that only He can give.
Robert Notgrass