When the Compass is “Off”

Have you ever been lost? I remember a time that I was scouting a new area I wanted to hunt.  It was a beautiful forest. I had planned on only being there a short time so I didn’t bring anything with me except my binoculars.

As I walked through the woods looking for the best place to set up my deer stand, time got away from me. As the sun was setting, I exited the woods, and to my shock, I was completely lost and nowhere near where my car was located.  In fact, I was not sure where I was. I guessed that I was  2-3 miles from my car which I thought now was on the other side of the woods. Darkness was also upon me. I had no flashlight or compass, and I was not certain what direction I needed to go.  I began running back through the woods to try to get through as much of the dense timber as I could before it became completely dark. Once darkness engulfed me, I continued through the thicket slowly fumbling through the woods. When I finally came out of the forest, I was very thankful that I could see my car!

What was my problem? My inner compass was “off.” I thought I knew where I was and the best way to get to my destination, but I was terribly wrong. This memory came to mind as I read Gen. 19. This passage describes the tragic story of Lot and his efforts to protect the two angels who had come to Sodom. He was willing to give the mob (consisting of all the men of the town), his two virgin daughters so that they would not pursue their homosexual desires with the angels. What a corrupt city and foolish dad!

The story is sickening, but how could Lot be willing to give up his two daughters to protect the angels? The only explanation is that his moral compass was “off.” As K. A. Mathews notes,

“That Lot sanctions the rape of his daughters indicates a moral compass gone awry; he places hospitality above the protection of his own children.”

Our society’s moral compass has also gone awry. Sinful behavior is parading before us on the news, in the movies, and in many other ways.  Many who are living life by their inner moral compass pursue a selfish and sinful agenda because they no longer have accurate bearings. They no longer see God and His will as true North. The result is that our culture is on a fast downward moral spiral.

Father, I thank you that you do not change. I thank you that you and your will always functions as our moral compass. From your Word, we can determine how you want us to live. If our personal agendas are in conflict with your clearly communicated will as we find it in scripture, then our compass is “off.” Help us to consistently seek you and your will and guide us by your moral compass.

Following Jesus with you,

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