Ethical Decision-Making Model Paper.docx - LIBERTY...

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LIBERTY UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF DIVINITYEthical Decision-Making ModelSubmitted to Dr. Kenneth W. Bush , in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the completion ofByNovember 10th, 2020
ContentsIntroduction………………………………………………………………………………………..3Samples of Ethical Decision-Making……………………………………………………………..3Conclusion………………………………………………………………………………………...7Bibliography……………………………………………………………………………………..102
IntroductionAccording to Rae (2018), “the model used for making ethical decisions should be able toaccommodate a variety of different moral and ethical perspectives”1. Chaplains often serve in aspecific ministry such as police (or) first responder chaplaincy, corporate chaplaincy, sports orcollege chaplaincy, hospital or hospice chaplaincy, or even prison chaplaincy. Theirenvironments will differ, the groups of people they serve and spiritually guide each day willdiffer, and they are often individuals that traditional ministries have either forgotten about, orhave turned their backs on. Therefore, what does the definition of ethics mean for chaplains, andwhat does the Bible itself say in regard to the ethics that chaplains must follow and exhibit? Thispaper is going to provide an emphasis on police chaplains, an exploration of how the twoquestions mentioned, and an additional brief analysis on how ethics in this ministry are likely toconflict with one another. Samples of Ethical Decision-MakingThroughout life individuals will often face many ethical dilemmas, and through the nature offirst responder chaplaincy, and chaplaincy ministry itself, ethical dilemmas can presentthemselves as a natural, and consistent occurrence. Rae (2018) states that “an ethical dilemma isa conflict between two or more value – or virtue-driven interests”, and he continues to go on anddiscuss that when this occurs that individuals should “identify the parties in the conflict, whattheir interests are, and what virtues and values underlie those interests”2. One ethical dilemmathat police chaplains can encounter involves that of suicide, specifically, police officers who arefeeling suicidal. With police officers suicide is “normally a long drawn out process, often overthe course of weeks, or even months before the act”3, and naturally through the Christian Faith,suicide itself3
1 Scott B. Rae, “Moral Choices: An Introduction to Ethics” Fourth Edition. (Grand Rapids, MI: ZondervanAcademic,2018), 110. 2 Rae, “Moral Choices”, 111. 3Chaplain Terry Morgan, “The Chaplain’s Role: How Clergy Can Work With Law Enforcement” (Chaplain Morgan,2012), 154. is often seen as a sin and not ethical or moral. According to Burton (2012), “legal systems have historically been informed by religion,such that in many jurisdictions suicide and attempted suicide remain illegal. They veryexpression ‘commit suicide’ implies, or at least suggests, a crime or sin”4. However, whenapproaching this ethical dilemma as a police chaplain, it is important to know that the Bible itselfdoes not appear to directly condemn the act of suicide, despite the fact that many denominations

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