Many Christians believe that, because we are saved by grace through faith alone, it is pointless to teach/encourage/petition for public morality. The mindset is: “Why moralize people that don’t even know Christ?” This is erroneous thinking. Here are 5 reasons why moral teaching is a good and necessary task:

  1. Immorality is personally destructive. If you love people, you’ll want them to be aware of how damaging their immoral choices are.
  2. Immorality victimizes others. By encouraging unbelievers to live according to a moral code you spare those around them some of the pain, abuse, confusion and death that can result from other people’s sins.
  3. It prepares people to think of themselves as Sinners opening the door to conversations about their need for a Saviour.
  4. It serves to shape legal codes and social justice, thereby creating justification to defend the powerless, wage or refuse to wage war, prosecute crime and punish immoral acts.
  5. Moral teaching serves the same purposes of the Old Testament Law: our failure to obey it perfectly awakens us to our need for a Gospel of Grace.

This does not mean that we should expect the same level of obedience from an unbeliever as we would from a Christ-follower. But it is still innately loving, just, and Gospel-centred to teach morals to all people.