Moral Standards of the Early Church

These moral standards are seen throughout the writings of the early church. For example, notice the moral standards as based on the Didache c. 60-100AD.

A. I WILL FOLLOW THE “WAY OF LIFE”

1. I will treat my enemies with love. (1:3-6)

  • Love you enemies

  • Pray for them, fast for them

  • Turn your other cheek

  • Go the second mile

  • Give generously to anyone asking of you

2. I will avoid our list of DON’Ts (2:1-3:6)

  • Murder

  • Commit adultery

  • Corrupt boys

  • Have illicit sex

  • Practice magic

  • Make potions

  • Abort your offspring

  • Kill a newborn

  • Covet your neighbor’s things

  • Swear falsely

  • Bear false witness

  • Speak badly of anyone

  • Hold grudges

  • Make empty promises

  • Covetousness

  • Greed

  • Hypocracy

  • Bad-manners

  • Arrogance

  • Hating any person

  • Anger

  • Envy

  • Contentiousness

  • Hot-headed

  • Lustful

  • Divining, enchanting, astrology

  • Lover of money, seeker of glory

  • Self-pleasing, evil-minded

3. I will practice our lists of DO’s (3:7-4:14)

  • I will be gentle

  • Be merciful, harmless, calm & good

  • (Not be self-exalting)

  • Remember constantly my mentor & other saints in the church

  • (Not cause dissention but reconcile those fighting)

  • Ignore social status in correcting others

  • Focus on giving more then getting

  • Cheerfully give without grumbling to those in need

  • Be active in training my children

  • Treat my slaves rightly; (slaves should be subject to masters)

  • Hate hypocrisy

  • I will give to those in need

  • Keep these rules adding nothing or taking nothing away

  • Confess my failings in church

B I WILL AVOID THE “WAY OF DEATH”I will reject the “Way of death” as represented by the following (5:1-2)

  • Murders

  • Adulteries

  • Lusts

  • Illicit sex acts

  • Thefts

  • Idolatries

  • Magic

  • Potions

  • Sorceries

  • Perjuries

  • Hypocrisies

  • Double-heartedness

  • Trickery

  • Arrogance

  • Malice

  • Self-pleasing

  • Greed

  • Foul-speech

  • Jealousy

  • Audacity

  • Haughtiness

  • False-pretension

  • Hating truth/loving lies

  • Paying unjust wages

  • Not helping the poor

  • Murdering children

  • Turning away the needy

  • Advocating for the rich

  • Loving frivolous things

  • Insisting on recompense for everything

C CONCLUSION After learning the “Two ways” I make these final commitments. (5:1-6:3)

  • I will be wary of anyone drawing me away from this teaching.

  • As I am able to live all of this teaching I shall do it; but until I am able to bear some of it I shall bear whatever load I can for now yet keep my goal of carrying the entire load.

  • I will do my best to follow the traditions regarding eating food however I understand that eating anything sacrificed to idols is non-negotiable and I will abstain from it.

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