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CHRISTIAN APPROACHES TO SELECTED ISSUES RELATED TO MODERN SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENT

Learning Outcomes 

By the end of the topic, you should be able to:

  1. Explain the Christian view on some issues related to modern science and technology
  2. Explain the Christian view on the effects of modern science and technology on the environment

LESSON ONE: DEFINITIONS

Science – subject field that deals with a systematic study of our surroundings and behaviour of materials  in the universe

It is based on observation, experimentation and measurement.

Technology – application of science to achieve desired objectives.  Environment – our surroundings – both natural and human made i.e.

mountains, lakes, land, forests,  animals, buildings, flowers etc

 

LESSON TWO: POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. State the various ways that science and technology has improved our lives
  2. State the negative effects of science and technology

Ways science and technology has improved human lives

  • Improvement of crop production – a quality seeds, fertilizers leading to improved yields
  • Better nutrition, health care, medical services
  • Improvement of livestock production through artificial insemination, quality medicine leading to more milk production.
  • It has led to development of efficient means of transport – land, air, seas
  • Work has been made easier and enjoyable. There is use of machines, automation, use of computers.
  • People’s lives have been spared, saved e.g. through life saving machines (ICU), incubators
  • Business transactions are being done through the internet

Communication has been made easy – fax, email, short text messages on mobile phones etc

  • Research is ongoing for incurable diseases i.e. HIV / AIDS, cancer
  • There is better management of environment
  • Technology has made the world a global village
  • Through family planning methods, its easier to control population growth
  • There’s a better security system through use of scanners, alarms, electrified fences etc.
  • Improvement of learning through e–learning
  • There’s easier movement from one country to another

Negative effects of science and technology 

  1. People use medicine to commit suicide
  2. Increase of crime, fraud and death through modern means of communication
  3. Destruction of family relationships
  4. Breakdown of community names, values morals, breakdown of families
  5. Terrorism
  6. Greed for money / materialism
  7. Unemployment – replacement of personnel by machines
  8. Health hazards such as accidents in factories
  9. Pollution, air poisoning

LESSON THREE: CHRISTIAN VIEW ON ISSUES RELATED TO SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY.

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the following terms euthanasia, blood transfusion, organ transplant, genetic engineering and  plastic surgery
  2. Describe Christians’ view on euthanasia, blood transfusion, organ transplant, human cloning, genetic engineering and plastic surgery
  3. State the reasons for and against euthanasia, blood transfusion, organ transplant, human cloning, genetic engineering and plastic surgery
  4. Euthanasia
  5. Blood transfusion
  6. Organ transplant
  7. Genetic engineering
  8. Plastic surgery

Euthanasia 

It’s a Greek word, which means an easy and painless death. It is ‘mercy killing’ ending a person’s life so  as to alleviate them from experiencing pain.

Its practiced with the sick person’s knowledge

It is involuntary when its practiced against or without the sick person’s consent

Its done by

  1. Injecting an overdose of sleeping pills to the sick person
  2. Switching off life support machine
  3. Exposing the person with chronic pneumonia to very cold air.

Christians view on Euthanasia 

Christians are opposed to euthanasia for several reasons such as

  1. Life is sacred, a gift from God and only God can take away human life
  2. Suffering is part of human life
  3. Euthanasia is against medical ethos, which demands that doctors and nurses work for the sustenance of human life and alleviation of suffering but not to terminate it.
  4. Jesus has power over sickness and through his name all sickness are healed
  5. Accepting euthanasia discourages medical research on vaccines that may cure various diseases.
  6. Euthanasia discourages patients and makes them to lose hope in life. They may feel unwanted and

Blood transfusion 

It’s the process of injecting a person’s blood into another person through his/her veins. The giver is a  donor the receiver is a recipient.

Reasons for blood transfusion 

  1. When a person is suffering from acute anemia (little blood in the body) low blood
  2. To restore blood lost during fatal accidents, wars, or childbirth
  3. To maintain blood levels for patients undergoing major operations
  4. To correct the low haemoglobin level of some patients
  5. Blood has to be screened for any diseases, and then kept in blood bank after determining  the blood group. The transfusion should be in a hygienic way. The equipment used  should be sterilized.
  6. Donors should not be below 16 years or above 65 years

Alternatives to blood transfusion 

  1. Volume expanders – increase fluid levels in the body
  2. Growth factors – intra operative / post operative
  3. Blood salvage – same blood when on surgery is saved then transfused back to the patient

Christian view on blood transfusion 

  1. Some Christian’s believe it is wrong to take blood from a healthy person and transfuse it to another
  2. Blood is life and life cannot be taken from one person to another
  3. Blood transfusion is essential as it saves life
  4. Blood transfusion can transmit dangerous diseases like HIV / AIDS and Hepatitis B
  5. God has given Christians the intelligence and capability to make the right decision and choice

Organ transplant 

  • This is the removal of a defective organ and replacing it with a healthy one. Body organs transplanted are kidneys, heart and eyes small intestines, pan crease.  – The purpose is to replace the damaged organ of a recipient
  • Common transplants are the heart, kidney, eyes from living and the dead (heart) within a span of  hours. Eyes can be transplanted from animals.

Christian view on organ transplant 

  1. It saves life hence acceptable to some
  2. Its transferring human life from one person to another
  3. Its wrong to transplant from animals – view by some Christians
  4. Some support organ transplant by referring to the story of creation of

Eve from parts of Adam

  1. It is part of human beings continuing with the creation work of God.
  2. It is an expression of love and concern for those suffering as taught by Jesus Christ.

Genetic engineering  

  • It’s a scientific technique used by scientists to change the biological characteristics of living organisms by deliberately altering the structure of individual genes.
  • There are genetically modified foods, genetically engineered seeds, test tube babies, human clones, and genes of human insulin.

Human cloning 

This is a form of genetic engineering. It’s a creation of genetically identical copy of a human being,  human cell.

Twins are a form of natural cloning

There’s therapeutic cloning and reproductive cloning (human cloning)

Therapeutic cloning is when cells from an adult are used in creating medicine or for research

Reproduction cloning is the making of human beings  More than 90% of cloning has failed.

Animals cloned have died young, had cancers or arthritis.

Human cloning is illegal worldwide

Genetic cells are used to treat Alzheimer, heart attack, cancer

Test tube babies are different from human cloning. Test tube babies are where the egg and sperm is  fused together outside the body.

In cloning, a needle like device is used to draw out the cells from an embryo, then preserved using  chemicals, then put in a womb/uterus to grow. Some do not need a sperm cell, they use other body cells  for fertilization.

Reasons for advocating human cloning 

Can clone people whose genetic composition is of a genius, people with special abilities or talents

Can be able to bring, revive back great extinct characteristics.

Those who support it believes it can reduce immorality

Reasons against human cloning 

  1. God is the sole creator. Cloning takes the place of God.
  2. It de –humanizes human beings purpose of human reproduction
  3. It destroys uniqueness of each individual (Cloning is an exact copy)
  4. It can be abused and used to create antisocial people (rapists, thieves)
  5. May create deformed people
  6. It’s un-ethical, immoral experiment. Its destruction of the embryo hence abortion
  7. 95% of clones have failed (animal) most animals died
  8. Its illegal
  9. Closed animals died of cancer, had arthritis, deformities and an early death
  10. Cloning may bring a destructive copy of humans

Advantages of genetic engineering 

  1. Implanting genes that are diseases free in people, plant and animals could prevent diseases.
  2. Genetic crops yield more
  3. Helps to determine the biological parent in case of dispute on babies (DNA)
  4. Helps to increase disease resistance in crops and altering animal traits in plants and animals
  5. Assists in classifying blood during screening before it’s transfused to another person.

Christian view of genetic engineering 

  1. Christians support genetic engineering that is beneficial to human beings e.g. Cure of genetic diseases, production of drugs, plant and animals
  2. Human beings are made in God’s image and are loved by God with or without defects.
  3. The dignity of the human being is eroded or disregarded and should be upheld.
  4. Christians oppose cloning and test tube babies
  5. Its against God’s will or teaching

Plastic surgery 

  • It’s to change or mould the shape of something, to enhance or restore an area of the body
  • It’s repairing or improving of damaged, diseased or unsatisfactory shaped parts of the body with pieces of skin or bone taken from other parts of the body.
  • Skin grafting is the most common type of plastic surgery
  • Plastic surgery is done on cleft lips i.e. cosmetic surgery, breast surgery reduction or enlargement,  surgery done to look younger.

Reasons for plastic surgery 

  • It can help restore ones confidence or self – esteem
  • It enhances beauty, attractiveness or youthfulness
  • It enhances a person’s life and can be a life changing procedure
  • It may help a person to get a new job

Disadvantages 

  • Its expensive
  • Can lead to transmission of diseases

Christian views on plastic surgery 

  • Some support it, as it has some benefits
  • Some Christian oppose plastic surgery in order to look younger – Some argue that some people do it because of a lack of self – acceptance, low self esteem hence  should work on such issues first.

 

LESSON FOUR: THE CHRISTIAN VIEW ON THE EFFECTS OF MODERN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY ON THE  ENVIRONMENT (POLLUTION, DESERTIFICATION)

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. State the various ways of caring for the environment

In Genesis 1, man was given the responsibility of taking care of the environment

Ways of taking care of the environment 

  1. Cleaning up the environment, clean up rivers
  2. Educating people on the importance of conservation
  3. Dispose industrial wastes properly
  4. Enforce use of environment – friendly fuel (unleaded fuel)
  5. Factory owners to supply protective wear to factory workers
  6. Planting of trees and flowers
  7. Establishing airports, industries, and disco clubs away from residential areas.
  8. Advocate for laws to be passed to minimize noise from vehicles, aircrafts, entertainment centres.

Waste to be managed through

Reuse e.g. bottles

Recycle – plastic bottles to be recycled to plastic bins, old newspapers to be recycled to tissue papers.

Recover – burning waste products to produce electricity

Waste can be managed to reduce use of ‘Throw away’ goods e.g. batteries to use of electricity.

 

LESSON FIVE: POLLUTION AND ITS EFFECTS.

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the terms pollutant and pollution
  2. Give examples of pollutants
  3. State and explain the types of pollution
  4. State the effects of the various types of pollution.

It’s introduction into the environment of substances or energy that is liable to cause hazards to human

health, harm to living resources and ecological systems

In simple terms pollution is the contamination of the environment.  Substances that cause pollution are called pollutants. Some of the pollutants include;

Industrial affluent

Pesticides

Insecticides

Fertilizers

Ultra – violent rays from nuclear plants

Dust

Smoke

Noise

Waste heat

Exhaust gases from automobiles

Types of pollution 

  1. Water pollution
  2. Air pollution
  3. Land pollution
  4. Radiation pollution
  5. Sound pollution (noise)

Water pollution 

This is the increase of substances in water in excess of its rightful chemical components thus making it  unsuitable for human, animal or plant use.

  • Disposing domestic and industrial waste into rivers, lakes, seas etc pollutes water.
  • Disposing agricultural chemicals pesticides into water bodies.
  • Oil spilling into waters
  • Poor sanitation bathing or washing clothes in rivers or dams

Effects of water pollution 

  1. Causes diseases, which are communicable such as cholera, typhoid, and dysentery.
  2. Leads to death of marine life – birds (Flamingo) fish by oil spills
  3. Mercury (metal) leads, silver is poisonous. They kill organisms.
  4. Water becomes unfit for human consumption

Air pollution 

Presence of contaminants in the atmosphere caused by

  1. Smoke
  2. Fumes
  3. Dust – from mines, quarries
  • When there is an increased level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere that’s pollution
  • Other major atmospheric pollutants include gases such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFC), and sulphur dioxide (SO2)
  • Nitrogen Oxide (NO) i.e. fumes from vehicles, aircrafts, industries

Effects 

  • Leads to diseases such as bronchitis, asthma
  • Leads to depletion of the Ozone layer leading to ultra – violent rays of the sun penetrating to the earth causing skin cancer, cataracts (eye problems), low plant yields.
  • Causes rusting of roofs
  • Causes acid rains
  • Carbon dioxide (02) in the atmosphere has led to global warming. (vi) Formation of smog (thick fog), which can lead to accidents.  (vii) Colored rain due to large amounts of dust in the atmosphere  (viii) Eyesight loss due to gas leakages from industrial plants.

Land pollution 

Land pollution is any physical or chemical alteration to land, which causes change in its use and renders  it incapable of beneficial use without treatment.

Improper or excessive use of insecticides, pesticides makes land acidic  – Land is also polluted by improper disposal of waste / garbage, broken glasses.

Effects 

  • Waste is an eye sore spoiling the beauty of the environment
  • Broken glass can lead to injuries
  • Open mining leaves pits, which are a danger to people and animals.

Noise pollution 

  • Experienced especially in urban centres, near roads, running water, mining areas, airports, music from bars, nightclubs etc.
  • An instrument called sound meter measures noise. The lowest unit is O Decitel, which is okay. More than 80 decibels is harmful to the ear.

Noise over 80 decibels can cause (effects)

  • Deafness, hearing problems
  • Psychological disorders – frustrations, irritation
  • Insomnia
  • Shock due to sudden noise
  • Cracking of walls

Noise can be minimized by

Construction of sound proof buildings

Location of residential areas away from industries, airports, bars, main roads

Banning of unnecessary hooting, playing of loud music in public vehicles

Installing silencers in generators

Education people on the effects of noise pollution

Pollution caused by radiation

Mainly in developed countries

Atomic explosions e.g. Hiroshima / Nagasaki in Japan in 1945. The side effects of mutations of born  children. Some children born with deformities. The radiation caused chromosome mutations. Some  mutations on the cells of the parent / grandparents.

Nuclear power stations also a danger

Medical equipment e.g. X ray machines when one is over exposed to these radiations (x – rays) it can  lead to development of cancer.

 

LESSON SIX: DESERTIFICATION

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the term desertification
  2. Describe the causes of desertification

This is slow encroachment of desert – like a condition to land that was previously productive making it  desolate, uncultivatable and uninhabitable. Human activity accelerates creation of deserts.

Causes of deserts 

  1. Natural
  2. Persistent rains in a semi – arid area
  3. Exposure of an area to very high, very cold temperatures
  4. Inadequate rainfall for a long period of time
  5. Human

Human activities that lead to desertification are

  • Cutting down of trees (deforestation) for land use such as building, industries, and not replacing
  • Use of water from wells to irrigate land. Its harmful especially salty water – salt on soil salination is toxic to soils.
  • Incorrect use of pesticides and fertilizers destroy soil nutrients. (iv) Industrialization – industries emit carbon dioxide (CO2) leading to formation of acid rain, which leads  to unproductive land hence desertification
  • Overgrazing especially among the pastoralist communities  (vi) Poor farming methods like cultivation on riverbanks and slopes, which causes soil erosion, leading to  desertification.

 

LESSON SEVEN: SOLUTIONS TO DESERTIFICATION

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

1.state the solutions to desertification

Land can be restored through the following ways;

  • Removal of people, livestock from certain areas e.g. forests
  • Installation of good drainage systems
  • Reduction of water logging / salination
  • Use of alternative sources of fuel such as wind, solar, biogas instead of cutting down trees to use as fuel (charcoal)
  • Advocate for penalties to those who pollute the environment – factories
  • Replace trees that are cut down
  • Build water storage facilities to store rain water then use it for irrigation
  • Educate people on the importance of the environment
  • Use of manure instead of harmful fertilizers

Emulate Prof. Wangari Maathai implanting trees – 8th October 2004 she was awarded the Nobel peace  prize, an international award, for her efforts in preserving the environment.

Revision questions. 

  1. How can modern Christians evaluate scientific and technological discoveries
  2. Why is the church in Kenya opposed to plastic surgery?
  3. How has science and technology improved human life?
  4. What are the consequences of science and technology in our society?
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APPROACHES TO LAW, ORDER AND JUSTICE

Learning Outcomes 

By the end of the topic you should be able to:

  • Define the terms ‘law’ ‘order’ and ‘justice’
  • Describe the traditional African practices that promote law, order and justice.
  • Explain the Biblical teaching on law, order and justice.
  • Identify and evaluate the need for law, order and justice in the society.
  • Explain the rights and duties of citizens
  • Explain the causes and remedies of social disorder.
  • Evaluate the role of Christians in the transformation of the society
  • Discuss church-state relationship

LESSON ONE: DEFINITION OF TERMS

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the following terms law, order and justice
  2. State the types of law
  3. State the types of statutory laws

Introduction 

  • Law, order, justice are essential for the survival of any society
  • Following laws leads to order and justice lack of following leads to disorder and injustice laws of Kenya are laid down in the constitution.

1. Law

Established rules by an authority to regulate human behaviour in the community Schools laws, religious  laws, factory laws, hospital laws etc. laws differ from society to society. Laws are dynamic. Laws cover all  aspects of life.

2. Order

Condition brought about by obedience to set rules or laws. Order leads to peaceful co – existence in the  society. Where there is order, things are done systematically. The opposite of order is disorder.

Types of laws 

  1. Non – legal laws – no court action e.g. school rules
  2. Customary traditional laws – based on culture, social traditions. They have to agree with state laws. They are respected by state.
  1. Statutory laws / legal laws – laws made by local council or national government and citizens are expected to obey them.  Types of statutory laws
  2. Civil laws – made by parliament on issues such as taxes, labour, divorce etc
  3. Criminal law – on crime / punishment
  4. Constitutional law – matters of state and governance
  5. Company law
  6. Religious laws e.g. Islamic law ‘sharia’
  7. Justice – treating others the way they deserve in relation to the law. Its administration of rightful dealings in a fair manner according to their actions. A just society follows rules and administers legal action to those who offend others or disobey rules. Justice means treating people the same way without  discrimination.

 

LESSON TWO: IMPORTANCE OF LAW, ORDER AND JUSTICE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. State the importance of law, order and justice

 

  1. They are essential to preserve harmony and protect people
  2. Laws guide people and ensure people’s rights are protected.
  3. They protect people’s property and enable people to live in harmony
  4. They protect the consumer from exploitation
  5. They safeguard religious freedom
  6. Laws control power of those in authority and promote political stability
  7. Provides stability, encouraging economic growth
  8. Helps to control discontentment among people
  9. Helps implementation of taxes effectively
  10. Provides / help in maintenance of security
  11. Ensures human rights are upheld
  12. Enables the government to protect its citizens from internal or external threats.
  13. International law regulates relations between countries.

 

LESSON THREE: RIGHTS AND DUTIES OF CITIZENS

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able: –

  1. Define the terms citizen, rights and duty
  2. List the rights of citizens
  3. State te duties/ responsibilities of citizens

Citizen – person who is a member of a state, kingdom, empire. A person who has full rights as a member  of a country by birth, decent, registration, naturalization.  Rights – legal claims that one is entitled to from the government  Duty – ones responsibility to the government.

Rights 

  • Right to life – to live securely
  • Right to education
  • Right to liberty / freedom e.g. one should not be imprisoned, detained, without trial. One is innocent until proven guilty
  • Right to protection of property
  • Right to own a family – right to marry and raise a family
  • Right to health
  • Freedom of movement

Right to freedom of association 

  • Right to freedom of assembly
  • Freedom of religion
  • Right to own property
  • Right to equality – non discrimination
  • Protection of freedom of expression and speech (own opinions, ideas) Children have rights e.g.

Right to life, education, parental care, health, protection from exploitation, right to identity etc.

Duties of citizens (responsibilities) 

  • Pay taxes to the government
  • Respect the flag and national anthem
  • Respect those in authority
  • Respect the laws of the land
  • Register as a voter and voter in national elections
  • Be responsible at work
  • Participate in national development
  • Promote peace and harmony in the society
  • Report errant members of the society to law enforcement agents
  • Protect the environmental – clean, plant trees, avoid poaching etc

 

LESSON FOUR: TRADITIONAL AFRICAN PRACTICES THAT PROMOTE LAW, ORDER, JUSTICE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

1. State and explain the traditional African practices that promoted law, order and justice

Some of the practices that promote law, order and justice are

Punishment of offenders 

People who committed offences such as stealing, murder, witchcraft were punished through death,  curses, paying heavy fines etc. this promoted law, order, justice

Installation of rules, kings, chiefs, elders 

They were installed to maintain law, order and to execute justice in their areas of jurisdiction

Administration of oaths

  • Administered by specialists and are used as a method of establishing and maintaining law and order

Making of covenants 

  • Covenants were made if there was a conflict between two communities. They would promise to live in peace and harmony.

Observing of taboos and customary law

Taboos were prohibitions. Those who went against taboos were severely punished

  1. The kinship system – defined how people related one to another
  2. Rites of passage – ensured customs, laws were adhered to
  3. Religious practices- such as praying, singing, sacrificing and giving of offerings had the effect of maintaining order.

 

LESSON FIVE: BIBLICAL TEACHING ON LAW, ORDER AND JUSTICE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

1. Describe the biblical teachings on law, order and justice

 

  1. God initiated Law, order, and justice.
  2. God’s creation is orderly. God desires order
  3. Man was created with a conscience to know right from wrong sin has consequences or punishment.
  4. God does punish disobedience i.e. justice
  5. God instituted the laws as part of his plan for salvation e.g. law of circumcision, Torah (10 commandments), circumcision of the heart, laws on what to eat etc.
  6. God’s law governed kingship in Israel. National prosperity depended on a king’s ruler ship. Kings were to ensure law and order
  7. In the New Testament John the Baptist urged people to observe the law (social justice).
  8. Jesus taught that the kingdom of God is based on law, order and justice. There should be fair treatment for all people
  9. Jesus said that the law of Moses was given to guide people Christians should obey the law of the land and respect those in authority
  10. The apostolic teachings stress the need for law, order, justice (1 Cro.14: 33)
  11. Christians should be orderly.
  12. The birth of Jesus was orderly. His ministry was also orderly hence should Christians.

 

LESSON SIX: CAUSES OF SOCIAL DISORDER AND THEIR REMEDIES

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. State and explain the causes of social disorders
  2. State the causes of discrimination
  3. Explain the causes of crime
  4. List the forms of punishment

Social disorder is a state of confusion or lack of order in the society

Causes 

  • Discrimination
  • Inequitable distribution of wealth, resources
  • Crime
  • Racism
  • Tribalism
  • Sexism

Discrimination

Discrimination is unfair treatment. Discrimination is on basis of

  • Race
  • Tribe
  • Sex / gender

People or a particular person is singled out and treated with disfavor or distaste. It is showing bias or  prejudice.

Causes of discrimination 

Culture

  1. Prejudice – bias original from opinions that have no known basis or supporting facts – stereotypes
  2. Ignorance e.g. on HIV /AIDS
  3. Social status – ones position in a society

Inequitable distribution of wealth and resources

This is when riches of family, community, and nation are not fairly shared out due to  Selfishness or poor planning. Some areas are marginalized.

Racism – unfair treatment of people because of their race

Tribalism – discrimination on basis of ethnic group

Crime – an offence against state, normally settled in court. Its antisocial behaviour causing disorder.

Causes of crime (Why people commit crime) 

  1. Poverty
  2. Public mistrust for law enforces
  3. Lack of parental guidance
  4. Wide gap between the rich and the poor
  5. Greed for power, money
  6. Materialism
  7. Drug and substance abuse

Sexism 

  • Discrimination against people because of gender
  • Women are discriminated in areas such as jobs, no promotion for women, oppression of women at home, cultural values demeaning the status of women, wife beating / men beating, female genital  mutilation (FGM) early children marriages etc.

Remedies to social disorder 

  • Rehabilitation for drugs users / abusers
  • Punishment for offenders of crime

Forms of punishment 

  • Imprisonment
  • Payment of fines
  • Corporal punishment
  • Probation
  • Being assigned community work
  • Being placed under house arrest
  • Learning in approved schools, Juvenile homes

Equitable distribution of national resources

  • Develop marginalized areas
  • Create jobs
  • Campaign against drug abuse
  • The public to use hot lines to report crime to police
  • Preach against racism, tribalism, and preach equality, freedom and interaction with all people
  • People to be sensitized to appreciate and respect different ethnics groups

Promote national unity through education /cultural programmes

Creation of more national schools so as to have students from all backgrounds

  • Encourage domestic tourism
  • Enlighten women on their rights
  • Employment on merit
  • Rich countries to share wealth with the poor

 

LESSON SEVEN: ROLE OF CHRISTIANS IN TRANSFORMING THE SOCIAL, ECONOMIC, POLITICAL LIFE OF  THE SOCIETY

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the term transformation
  2. Describe Christian’s participation in social life
  3. Describe Christian’s participation in political life
  4. Describe Christian’s participation in economic life

Transformation is to completely change the attitude, character, and well being of the society

  1. Christian participation in the social life
  • Christians are involved in the preaching of the gospel in many places in the country. They use print and electronic media to spread the gospel.
  • Christians have shown concern for the destitute and victims of violence in the society by building homes for them and providing them with food and clothing.
  • Christians run schools, vocational institutions, universities providing educational services
  • Christians offer medical services to the society
  • They speak openly against sexual immorality, murder, bribery, corruption, abortion etc.
  • They show compassion to those in need the poor, HIV / AIDS orphans, widows, widowers, aged etc.
  • They offer guidance and counselling to dysfunctional families (the pastors, those trained to do counselling – almost all pastors get a training in guidance and counselling)

2. Christians participation in the political life

  • Christians participate in the political life by advocating for fair distribution of wealth
  • They offer prayers for government, political leaders
  • They exercise their right by voting
  • They also participating in the political life by standing up for elections

(Vying for elections)

3. Christian participation in economic life

  • Christians participate in economic life by paying taxes to the government
  • By contributing in collection of funds for construction of churches, schools, hospitals
  • They invest in business that promotes their own development as well as the development of the
  • They provide financial resources in order to assist others to start economic activities or self employment
  • They discourage business practices such as using faulty scales, hiking of prices cheating in business etc and encourage proper acquisition of wealth

4. THE CHURCH – STATE RELATIONSHIP

The government and the church interact at various levels and in different areas

  1. Religious leaders give advice to the state
  2. The church speaks against corruption, robbery, rape, abortion, vices which the government is fighting
  3. The church is the conscience of the state
  4. Both educate the citizens on the constitution and their rights
  5. The church preaches peace, love, unity, order
  6. The state needs support of the church in mobilizing citizens to adopt government policies
  7. Both are involved in rehabilitation of prisoners
  8. The church builds schools and other institutions that supplement government institutions.
  9. The church is involved in formulation of educational curriculum. However the church differs with government on various issues such as  a) Use of condoms (Some churches opposed to this)
  10. Use of live bullets by the law enforces when curbing riots
  11. Fight on corruption a thorn to the church since state leaders are involved
  12. Issue of death penalty – church been fighting against death penalty to convicts
  13. The government lifted the death penalty as a form of punishment in the year 2009.

Revision questions 

1. state ways in which Christians can promote peace/unity in the society

2. Why should Christians take part in voting?

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CHRISTIANS APPROACHES TO WEALTH MONEY AND POVERTY

Learning Outcomes 

By the end of this topic, you should be able to: –

  1. Define the concepts wealth, money and poverty
  2. Explain and appreciate the traditional African understanding of wealth and poverty
  3. Describe the impact of the introduction of money economy in the traditional African society.
  4. Explain Christian teachings on money, wealth and poverty
  5. Discuss Christians approached to some issues related to wealth money and poverty
  6. Uphold the Christian principles in acquiring and using wealth

LESSON ONE: DEFINITION OF THE CONCEPTS WEALTH, MONEY AND POVERTY

  1. Wealth: – accumulation…

Accumulation of materials owned by an individual, family or a group of people. Wealth is property that  has economic value e.g. land, animals, money, valuable possessions such as jewellery, commercial and  residential buildings etc.

Ways of acquiring wealth 

Inheritance

Business

Commercial farming

Salaried Jobs

Investment of money in financial institution

Provision of commercial services

 

2. Money

It’s the medium of exchange that functions as a legal tender. It is something that is generally accepted as  a medium of exchange, a means of payment. It is usually in form of coins or notes. Good monetary  media (money) has certain qualities.

Qualities of money 

  • It should be acceptable
  • It should be fairly stable
  • Easy to divide into small units
  • Easy to carry
  • Should be relatively scarce
  • It should be durable
  • Its value should be maintained through proper control of its circulations Money is a measure of wealth. What it can purchase is the value. Money is used to buy services, goods,  pay debts etc.

Examples of currencies in the world are

Ksh. (Kenya), Rand (South Africa) US & Dollar, Pound (Britain) Euro (Europe), Yen (Japan) Etc

 

3. Poverty

State of being without adequate basic necessities of life e.g. food, shelter, clothing

It’s a state of helplessness. It is characterized by poor health, hunger, and lack of education facilities,  uncared for environment.

Causes of poverty 

  1. Adverse climatic conditions (Geographical factors)
  2. Poor family background (historical and social factors)
  3. Political stability leading to civil wars
  4. Poor governance
  5. Regional imbalance of natural resources
  6. Low level of technology
  7. Laziness
  8. Over dependence on foreign aid

 

LESSON TWO: THE TRADITIONAL AFRICAN UNDERSTANDING OF WEALTH AND POVERTY

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the terms wealth and poverty according to the traditional African understanding
  1. State the various ways in which wealth was acquired in traditional African communities
  1. List the causes of poverty in tradition African communities Wealth

In African traditional societies wealth was measured in terms of the amount of land, livestock, grains,  wives, children possessed by an individual or the community.

Wealth was acquired in various ways.

  • As a gift from God

Most Africans believe that wealth is a blessing from God.

  • Inheritance

In cases where the head of the family is dead, the eldest son becomes the custodian of the estate. The  clan and community elders give direction on how the wealth is to be shared out.

  • Bride wealth
  • Farming
  • Exploitation of natural resources – honey, wood for carving, building materials etc
  • Trade

African communities were involved in barter trade where they exchanged good and services

  • Raids – wealth was also acquired by raiding other communities – goats, sheep,
  • People were encouraged to work hard to acquire wealthy honesty – Wealthy people were highly regarded and were considered for leadership  position
  • Wealth was incomplete without a family

Poverty 

Poverty was viewed as punishment or curse for wrongdoing.

Other causes of poverty according to African Traditional Society were: –

  • Laziness
  • Lack of inheritance
  • Raids by other communities
  • Famine
  • Natural calamities
  • Sickness – rendering the individual weak to acquire wealth – In acquiring wealth, principles such as value for human life, mutual responsibility, and sharing,  communal ownership were emphasized.
  • Places that were communal include grazing land, rivers, and watering places
  • Laziness was ridiculed through songs, riddles and proverbs.

 

LESSON THREE: IMPACTS OF THE INTRODUCTION OF MONEY ECONOMY IN TRADITIONAL AFRICAN  SOCIETY

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define economy, development and money economy
  2. Explain the reasons for the introduction of money
  3. Explain the impact of money economy in traditional African society

Introduction 

  • Money was introduced to Africa by the Europeans
  • Before colonial period, Africans practiced barter trade – actual goods exchanged with other goods e.g. animals would be exchanged with food grains, millet, sorghum, cowpeas, children exchanged for food  during famine.
  • Trade merchants from Asia had introduced into Africa forms of currency such as the cowrie shells, gold and the Indian rupees. Europeans introduced currency still used today
  • Economy: – careful management of resources, finances, income and expenditure of a family, a business  enterprise, community or a country. The economy of a country is to be well managed if it has the ability  to meet the social economic needs of her members.

Development 

It’s measured by the healthy of its economy in the provision of health, education, housing, sanitation,  employment, longevity of life, decrease of material and child mortality.  Money economy: – Use of money as a means of exchange in economic activities e.g. banking,  investment, insurance, payment of goods and services.

Reasons for money introduction 

  • Colonization brought a lot of changes such as unoccupied land declared ‘Crown land’ for colonialists.
  • Tax introduction

Africans were supposed to pay taxes to the government. Taxes were paid in form of money.

  • Introduction of formal education

School fees was introduced. Fees were paid in form of money.

  • Introduction of modern medical services People paid medical services using money.
  • Emergence of new lifestyles

Converts to Christianity were emphasized on to have materials, hence had to work to improve their  living standards. They built houses, took their children to schools practiced modern family techniques  hence had to use money.

Impact of the introduction of money economy in traditional African society 

  • Introduction of wage – labour
  • Break up of family ties as people migrated from rural to urban areas in search of employment
  • African land taken by the colonialists, reducing people to squatters hence need to work
  • There was creation of a gap between people – the rich and the poor
  • Emergence of vices e.g. corruption, bribery, prostitution, robbery
  • Deterioration of cherished African values e.g. bride wealth has become commercialized, customs lost
  • Loss of African human dignity. Africans had to pay taxes to the colonial government. They were forced  to work in European farms so as to get money. They worked under dehumanizing conditions  Production of traditional food crops declined replaced by cash crops.
  • Individual ownership of land was emphasized. Land could be sold at will
  • There was increase of rural – urban migration leaving the rural people less educated.
  • Exploitation of the poor by the rich – poor wages, overcharging prices on foods.
  • Destruction of the natural environment to create room for building projects, urban centres
  • The cost of living increased. Almost everything is acquired by money.

 

LESSON FOUR: THE CHRISTIAN TEACHING ON WEALTH, MONEY, POVERTY

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Explain the Christian teachings on wealth
  2. Explain the Christian teachings on poverty

Teaching on wealth 

  • Wealth is a blessing from God
  • Those who obey God’s laws, teachings of the prophets are promised blessings by God Deut28: 1 – 4
  • Wealth has duties associated with it e.g. 10% tithe, alms to the poor, and an aspect of stewardship.
  • Wealth should be used wisely. People are not owners of their property but are stewards. Should share with the poor, needy.
  • Wealth is not permanent e.g. parable of the rich fool. When people die, they take nothing with them.

Naked into the world, naked out of the world. Job. 1:21

  • Wealth can create a false sense of independence feeling of self reliance no need for God
  • Wealth should be obtained justly – no happiness for a person who gets riches in the wrong way.

Wrong attitude to wealth can lead to idolatry and other dangers. Matt.19: 23 – 24 danger of  materialism – making riches their God, the love of money is the root of all evil (1 timothy 6:10)

  • It is wrong to discriminate against others on the basis of material possessions. Jesus associated with the rich, the poor, the sick etc.
  • Seek spiritual wealth, which is permanent and more fulfilling than material wealth, which is transitory – temporal. Matt 6:19 – 20)
  • Acknowledge God as the source of ones riches
  • Use wealth to help the needy
  • Wealth is an instrument to enable us live decently.
  • Obsession with money and wealth leads to sin
  • Church leaders should avoid greed for wealth (1 Timothy 3:3) 16) God will judge rich exploiters.

Christian teaching on poverty 

  • Christian teachings discourage irresponsible behaviour and habits e.g. laziness, idleness and Some people became poor because of such.
  • Some people become poor because of misfortunes
  • Others are poor because of judgment due to disobedience to God
  • God cares for the poor
  • Those with more should share with the poor
  • People should work to alleviate poverty in the society
  • Jesus helped the poor so should we The poor in spirit will be blessed

 

LESSON FIVE: CHRISTIAN APPROACHES / RESPONSE TO ISSUES RELATED TO WEALTH AND MONEY.

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Describe the Christian’s response towards wealth and poverty
  2. State the factors causing poverty
  3. Describe how wealth/ resources can be distributed fairly

Christian can respond by 

  1. Insistence on fair distribution of wealth
  2. Fighting against bribery and corruption
  3. Using life skills
  4. Practicing Christian values

Introduction 

  • Affluence – having a lot of material possessions and a luxurious standard of living. Poverty is a state of lack of the basic necessities.
  • Illegal means of acquiring wealth include fraud, grabbing public land, selling narcotic drugs etc

Factors that have contributed to poverty 

  1. Political instability
  2. Lack of formal education
  3. Laziness
  4. Negative attitude towards work – choosing jobs
  5. Historical factors – colonization lack of land
  6. Exporting unprocessed agricultural products cheaply then sold back expensively.
  7. Fair distribution of wealth / resources
  8. Christians to promote the value of justice, fairness, social responsibility. How? By having anti – corruption crusades, be role models, teach or import skills, advocate for cancellation of foreign debts, taxation to all etc.  Fair salaries
  9. Promotion of affordable and decent housing
  10. Favourable terms of loans
  11. Encourage Jua Kali artisans
  12. Christians to demand transformation of society through implementation of just economic policies that can ensure fair distribution of wealth.
  13. Encourage foreign investors through good infrastructure, incentives e.g. shorter process to register  business, security.
  14. Christian to encourage investments by churches and inculcate in people the values of hard work, proper time management free education free health care for the poor or needy.

Fair distribution of wealth / resources refers to jobs, infrastructure, hospitals, water, agricultural  products etc.

 

LESSON SIX: BRIBERY AND CORRUPTION

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the following terms bribery and corruption
  2. Explain the factors that contribute to bribery and corruption
  3. Explain the consequences of bribery and corruption

Fighting against bribery and corruption 

Bribery and corruption are related terms.

Corruption: – practice of giving a bribe in the form of money, goods or privileges in return for a service.

Bribery: – act of giving money, material goods or services to someone to influence the recipient to give  underserved favour.

It is aimed at influencing a decision to favour.

Bribery is a form of corruption.

Corruption is some kind of moral degeneration. A practice whereby someone uses  his/her influence in an activity that is not morally acceptable.  – Example of corruption include promotion by a senior for a favour, colluding to miss work, use of  government vehicles to attend to personal matters.

In Kenya, Kenya Anticorruption commission KACC is a national body formed to fight corruption.

Factors leading to bribery and corruption 

  1. Un-employment – one will bribe to secure employment
  2. Greed for money – caused by peer pressure, poor moral values, wrong ethical foundation about money etc.
  3. Fear – fear of being imprisoned
  4. Ignorance – giving bribes in form of gifts
  5. Disintegration of traditional African values
  6. Lack of moral integrity – no Christian values, one having no spiritual basis
  7. Frustration in the place of work
  8. A perverted conscience

Consequences of corruption and bribery 

  1. Leads to injustice
  2. Leads to incompetent supplies of goods or services being awarded hefty contracts – leads to poor services e.g. road construction
  3. Poor infrastructure, poor public service delivery
  4. Leads to undermining moral fabric of society – leading to social hopelessness and despair
  5. Has led to lack of trust in public servants, and the government
  6. Discontentment among people.
  7. Degrades the personality of an individual Can lead to imprisonment and lose of job

 

LESSON SEVEN: CHRISTIAN ATTITUDE TOWARDS BRIBERY AND CORRUPTION

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Describe the Christian attitude towards bribery and corruption
  2. Define the following terms life skills, decision making, critical thinking, creative thinking, self esteem and assertiveness
  3. List the steps involved in decision making

It is condemned as an evil practice (a social evil) Ex. 23:8

Bribes cause injustice proverbs 17:23

Seen as morally wrong as they negatively affect one’s family Jesus drove out merchants from the temple. They had started exploitation of the poor.

Condemned because it degrades the personality of an individual

Amos condemned taking and giving of bribes

Bribes blinds the eyes

In the parable of John the Baptist condemned soldiers from taking bribes

Corrupt judge and the widow, corruption is condemned

Christians are to live righteously and not give bribes or receive. They are the light of the world.

Money gained from corruption is not acceptable before God.

Using life skills 

Life skills are abilities, which enable a person to face the challenges of life in an effective way they are

Decision making

Critical thinking

Creative thinking

Self esteem

Assertiveness

Decision making

Process of identifying the best alternative to overcome a challenge encountered. Often decisions we  make do not only affect us but those around us.

Steps to decision – making 

  1. Identify the challenge (problem) what’s the problem? What is bothering you?
  2. Understand the challenge / problem: – What is really bothering you?
  3. Find out possible solutions
  4. Find out the possible options and alternatives
  5. Consider the possible consequences for each option
  6. Select the best option
  7. Implement
  8. Evaluate the outcome of the action
  9. Critical thinking
  10. Ability to examine and assess a given situation impartially or objectively. It involves reasoning carefully. Getting detailed information, consider the option before making a decision. Critical thinking makes a person responsible for their actions.  c. Creative thinking 

This is the act or practice of using ideas imaginatively to solve a problem

Self-esteem 

This is the regard one has about himself or herself. Self-esteem can be low or high, positive or negative.

A positive or high self-esteem person has confidence, is outgoing, social, appreciates self, realistic and  independent.

A person with low, negative self-esteem is naïve, withdrawn, shy, feels inadequate, and no selfconfidence.

Assertiveness 

Ability to express ones feelings and wishes without hurting others. Assertive people are confident; direct  in dealing with others assertive people have a high self-esteem.

 

LESSON EIGHT: CHRISTIAN VALUES RELATED TO WEALTH, MONEY, AND POVERTY.

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

1. Define the terms, values, love. Honesty, reliability, fairness, justice, respect, humility, faithfulness,  persistence and chastity

State the values related to work

Values – Beliefs, which guide people on what is right and wrong. There are

  • Social values
  • Cultural values
  • Moral values

Values related to wealth are: –

  • Love
  • Honesty
  • Reliability
  • Fairness
  • Justice
  • Respect
  • Faithfulness
  • Humility
  • Persistence
  • Chastity

Love – intense emotion of attachment, affection, warmth, fondness, regard for a person or something

How should love guide a Christian in relation to wealth creation?  Honesty – quality of being truthful, fair trustworthy, sincere, genuine. The opposite of honesty is  dishonesty.

Reliability – being dependable, faithful, predictable, unfailing. The ability of being relied upon and  keeping promises.

Fairness – condition of being unbiased, free from discrimination.  Justice – fair dealings with the people, as they deserve according to the law. Being fair, giving people  what’s due to them. Opposite of justice is injustice.

Respect

Quality of having high regard for somebody or something. Politeness. It’s important to respect other  people’s property.

Humility – quality of not thinking that you are better than others. Being humble. Opposite of humility is  pride, being proud. Those who humble themselves shall be exalted.

Faithfulness – quality of remaining loyal or true to someone. Christians should be faithful at their places  of work and in allocating their wealth to God’s work.

Those who are entrusted with public resources to manage on behalf of the people should show a high  degree of faithfulness.

Persistence – quality to persevere. Quality to continue steadfastly, unrelentingly despite opposition e.g.  the unjust judge and widow, job =, Jeremiah are people who persisted.  Chastity – a state of being pure, holy, innocent modest. It is abstinence from actions that may make one  impure before God.

Christians should strive hard not to defile their bodies in search of wealth  -Christians should strive to live holy lives, avoid prostitution, drug abuse; corruption

people use sexual favour to get jobs or promotion. Christians should thus avoid such.

Revision questions 

  1. Explain the biblical teaching on wealth
  2. Discuss the biblical teaching on acquisition and use of wealth
  3. Explain ways in which people misuse wealth in Kenya today
  4. Show how misuse of wealth leads to family instability
  5. Give ways in which the Kenyan government is alleviating the high levels of poverty
  6. State the factors that have contributed to high levels of poverty in Kenya today
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CHRISTIANS APPROACHES TO LEISURE

Learning Outcomes 

By the end of the topic, you should be able to

  1. Explain the meaning of leisure
  2. Discuss the traditional African understanding of leisure
  3. Discuss Christian teaching on leisure
  4. Discuss the importance of leisure
  5. Outline various forms and uses of leisure
  6. Explain how leisure is misused in the society today
  7. Discuss the abuse of alcohol and other drugs and their effects
  8. Explain Christian criteria for evaluating the use of leisure

 

LESSON ONE: MEANING OF LEISURE

Work is an obligation – however people cannot work 24 hours. They need to rest. God rested on the 7th  day after work. Work and rest are complementary elements of human life.

Definition of leisure 

This is the time when one is free from work or other duties. Time at one’s own disposal, which can be  utilized in a productive manner depending on one’s interests and abilities.  Leisure provides mental, physical relaxation, spiritual, emotional relaxation and enrichment

Forms of leisure 

  1. Passive
  2. Active leisure

Passive involves use of mental energy

Active leisure – there is use of physical energy

Examples of activities of passive leisure are

  • Watching television
  • Reading story books
  • Playing video games
  • Chatting with friends

Examples of activities of active leisure are

  • Jogging
  • Mountain climbing
  • Gardening
  • Dancing
  • Tree planting
  • Playing football

Leisure is used for

  • Enjoyment
  • Entertainment – song, dance, watching movies etc
  • Relaxation – exercises
  • Socialization – sharing, education
  • Religious engagement – wedding ceremonies, visiting the sick, worship In passive leisure others entertain while in active leisure the person is active, whole body is involved.

Active leisure enables a person to

  1. Develop his/her body
  2. Build stamina
  3. Strengthen relationships etc

Some leisure activities are dangerous e.g. boxing, motor racing; while others are expensive e.g. golf.

Other leisure activities are addictive while others are unproductive.

  • Leisure activities should be planned for
  • Leisure activities can also be economic, income generating activities.

 

LESSON TWO: TRADITIONAL AFRICAN UNDERSTANDING OF LEISURE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson, you should be able to: –

1.Define leisure according to the traditional African understanding

2. State the various forms of communal leisure activities

 

In traditional African society leisure permeates all aspects of life. Leisure activities accompany work.

Leisure and work were entertainment. Work was accompanied by singing, reciting stories sharing past  events. Examples of leisure activities in traditional African society include

  •  Wrestling
  • Running
  • Playing ajua
  • Mock fighting
  • Swimming
  • Spear throwing
  • Poetry
  • Music and dance etc

Leisure activities that were communal include

  • Bull fighting
  • Tongue – twisters
  • Poetry recitation
  • Telling of myths legends
  • Dancing
  • Brain teasers Riddles etc  o Work in African society included fishing, tilling the land, herding, hunting, harvesting  o Most leisure activities in traditional African society were active form of leisure, communal, not  individualistic and not for monetary gains  o All forms of leisure had an educational value. Folk stories had a moral value. People were taught not to  be selfish, greedy jealousy etc Myths and legends tell of the origin of the community and its history of  important people as well as history of the community.
  • In African traditional society, leisure led to acquisition of values or virtues such as co – operation, sharing, solidarity, love, bravery, empathy, endurance, tolerance etc.
  • Most activities were linked to the worship of God and, veneration of the ancestors o Leisure activates were organized along gender and age group season

(E.g. harvest – dancing, singing);  wet rainy seasons – boat swimming  o Rites of passage e.g. initiation, marriage, birth and naming provided leisure activities

  • Leisure activities were planned for

 

LESSON THREE: CHRISTIAN TEACHING ON LEISURE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Describe the Christian teachings on work
  2. State the various ways that Christians use their leisure

Christian teach that 

  1. Work and leisure are of divine origin. God rested on the 7th day after working
  2. Leisure is a gift from God leisure should be put to good use. Its not be wasted
  3. Leisure provides us with the opportunity to worship God. Leisure should be used to serve God.
  4. Christians associate leisure with personal growth and fellowship
  5. Jesus recognized the need for rest by withdrawing his disciples from their active ministry. Its good to have time alone for reflection, rest, visit friend etc.
  6. Leisure should be used to seek God and help others e.g. Jesus prayed, helped the needy restored people’s health.

Ways Christian use their leisure time – activities 

Worshipping God

Visiting the sick

Caring for the needy

Resting

Watching television

Chatting with family members

Retreat – time spend away with a group of people to be alone with God

Visiting friends, relatives

Reading the bible

Praying etc

 

LESSON FOUR: IMPORTANT USE AND MISUSE OF LEISURE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. State the importance of leisure
  2. List the ways that leisure can be used properly
  3. Describe how leisure is misused today

Importance of leisure 

Leisure is necessary. It’s important in various ways

1) It is a good time to assess the work we have done (Reflection time)

2) It brings people together leading to self – growth and fulfilment (Social function of leisure)

  • Leisure helps individuals to discover their hidden talents
  • Leisure relaxes the mind – a change of activity, relieves the mind
  • Leisure refreshes the body – restores lost energy
  • Leisure enables Christians to offer charity to those in need
  • Leisure provides time for worship and spiritual renewal

Leisure gives one time to rest

  • It’s time for recreation
  • Give one time to attend social occasions
  • Allows people to travel and visit friends and relatives
  • Leisure can be used to enhance and acquire new skills and knowledge
  • It’s a time to develop and discover ones talents

Uses of leisure – proper of leisure 

Leisure can be used for

  1. Religious experience
  2. A time for rest
  3. Leisure is used to provide us with time to help others
  4. Leisure can be used to spread the word of God
  5. Development of talents
  6. Its an opportunity for individual growth
  7. Leisure strengthens social relationships
  8. Leisure can be used for reflection on one’s decision; actions etc leisure activities reveal who we are.
  9. Leisure can be used for educative and economic purposes

Proper use of leisure is when leisure time is spent doing activities that add value to us.

Misuse of leisure today 

Leisure time can be misused through various activities e.g.

1. Spending too much time in passive activities e.g. pornography watching, watching films that are  violent

2. Spending leisure time in idle talk – gossip-leading to conflicts

3. Spending time in gambling, casinos making bets on horses playing Ajua games etc

4. Alcohol and drug taking – when a person over drinks alcohol, spends time drinking at the expense of family, abusing drugs is misuse of leisure time.

5. Leisure can also be misused by engaging in dangerous activities. Night dancing, disco dancing has become a common form of leisure worldwide. What are the  advantages and disadvantages?

 

LESSON FIVE: DRUG ABUSE AND ITS EFFECTS- ALCOHOL, SOFT AND HARD DRUGS

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson, you should be able to: –

  1. Define the terms drug, drug use, drug abuse
  2. State the different ways that drugs are administered
  3. List the various categories of drugs
  4. List the different types of drugs
  5. Describe the various effects of different drugs

A drug is any substance which when taken may alter or cause changes in the normal functioning of the  body.

Drug abuse 

Improper use of drugs. Using a drug for another purpose than what it is intended for

Drug use 

Proper use of drugs

Drugs are taken in various forms namely

  • Liquids
  • Lotions
  • Ointment
  • Powder
  • Cake form,

Drugs are classified as legal and illegal

Ways of administering drugs 

Drugs are taken /administered in various ways

  • Infecting
  • Inhaling / smoking
  • Chewing
  • Swallowing
  • Drinking
  • Sniffing / snuffing

Categories of drugs 

  1. Medicinal
  2. Soft drugs
  3. Hard / narcotic drugs

Types of drugs 

  • Preventive drugs e.g. drugs to prevent polio, cholera, yellow fever
  • Curative drugs – drugs that cure diseases
  • Sedatives, palliatives – drugs that alleviate pain, put patients to sleep e.g. drugs for diabetes, heart diseases, asthma, painkillers
  • Tranquillizers – drugs that relieve tension induce sleep e.g. piriton, valium
  • Stimulants – drugs used to increase physiological activity of a particular organ. They arouse the activity of the central nervous system / senses.
  • Volatile drugs – these drugs intoxicate the user, they are derived from petroleum products paint thinners dry cleaning fluids glue etc. stimulants and volatile drugs classified as soft drugs.
  • Hard drugs or narcotic drugs

These are highly addictive drugs. The body forms dependence on these drugs. These drugs affect the  mind causing drowsiness; sleep, stupor and they are the most commonly abused drugs. Examples are

Cocaine 

  • From coca leaves
  • Its highly addictive
  • Causes mental problems
  • Can lead to death on overdose
  • A very expensive drug

Other side effects are confusion, Convulsions, circulatory collapse and rapid heart beat

Bhang / Marijuana 

  • A plant of Indian hemp
  • Also called marijuana, Hashish, Cannabis, Sativa depending on which part of the plant is taken i.e. leaves, stem, or roots.
  • Users become aggressive excited or high
  • Bhang changes perception of space, time and reality
  • It causes drowsiness and irresponsible behaviour
  • Its side effects causes people to be engaged in criminal activities e.g. robbery with violence as it gives changes in perception  Morphine

Its used to suppress pain clinically

  • Its addictive
  • Its derived from cocaine
  • Used as local aesthetic

Heroine 

  • Its pain relieving
  • Highly addictive
  • Powder heated in foil paper, vapour forms hence smoked referred to as” chasing the dragon” – Also called brown sugar
  • Its injected and inhaled
  • An overdose can lead to death
  • its expensive
  • It causes respiratory problems
  • Its depressive
  • Withdrawal symptoms when heroine is not available are nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and severe anxiety

Soft drugs 

  • Cigarette
  • Alcohol
  • Miraa / khat

Cigarette 

  • Made from tobacco
  • Cigarettes contain
  1. Nicotine – a highly addictive substance.
  2. Carbon monoxide, which damages arteries heart and lungs
  3. Tar – black substance which promotes cancer of the throat, heart and lungs

Cigarettes are legal drugs in Kenya.

Pregnant women may miscarry or terminate the pregnancy if they smoke.

Leads to chest respiratory diseases poor blood circulation

Leads to destructive fires due to carelessness

Miraa / khat 

  • Plants / legally in Kenyan, and other parts of the world
  • They are chewed
  • Causes temporary excitement
  • Makes one loose appetite for food and sex
  • The juice in miraa causes temporary excitement in the user when ingested
  • Miraa makes the user to be irritable

Alcohol 

  • Alcohol is a drug made through fermentation
  • It’s a drink used in social ceremonial occasions
  • It’s in form of beer wines, traditional brew (e.g. busaa, muratina, mnazi )and spirits e.g. whisks, brandy,  gin, chang’aa
  • Alcohol is prepared by fermentation or distillation – heating to a certain degree.
  • In African traditional society, alcohol was fermented and used for
  1. Medicinal value
  2. Entertainment
  3. Marriage celebrations
  4. Beer parties given to visitors
  • Excessive drinking was discouraged
  • Drunk people were scorned or scolded
  • Young people were not allowed to drink alcohol
  • When alcohol is taken excessively it is abused

Alcohol abuse 

  • Alcohol can lead to body dependence or addiction
  • Consequences of abusing alcohol are such as
  • Squandering family resources
  • Health deterioration
  • Lack of concentration leading to poor quality of work
  • Family break-ups due to frustrations

A man experiences a desire for sex but lacks the ability to perform leading to break ups

  • Deformed foetus if a mother abuses alcohol when pregnant
  • Alcohol destroys brain cells
  • It leads to unruly behaviour such as fights, violence
  • One is vulnerable to risky behaviour – a drunk person is unable to make proper decisions hence vulnerable to sexual infections such as HIV / AIDS
  • Can make a person cause accidents if driving under the influence of alcohol or staggering on the

 

LESSON SIX: CAUSES OF ALCOHOL AND DRUG ABUSE (REASONS WHY PEOPLE ABUSE ALCOHOL AND  DRUGS)

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. State and explain the effects of drugs
  2. State and explain the causes of drug use and abuse
  • Frustration due to unemployment, inability to perform well and meet set standards or other personal
  • Idleness – when idle some turn to alcohol and drug use
  • Addiction
  • Boredom
  • Bad examples from adults
  • Availability of drugs in the Kenyan market
  • Negative peer pressure
  • Experimentation then addiction
  • Media influence
  • Societal permissiveness
  • Urbanization
  • Pressure of work
  • Financial stress
  • Globalization – foreign world influences

Effects of drug abuse 

Drug abuse poses danger to the health of a person, affects family, society in general. Effects of drug  abuse are

Psychological problems – drugs are addictive. The body becomes dependant on them. It cannot perform without the drugs. It leads to depression, irritability, aggressiveness, paranoia, one becoming  afraid to face reality etc.

  1. Crime – robbery, theft, people abusing drugs will rob, steal so as to get money to buy the drugs. Drugs have led to students setting schools on fire, killing their fellow students
  2. Illusion – users do not face reality

Health problems – one is prone to diseases because of frequent use of drugs. Drugs weakens the body’s system e.g. alcohol leads to liver Cirrhosis, stomach ulcers. One is susceptible / prone to HIV /  AIDS infection STI’s lung cancer, still birth etc

Economic problems

Drugs are expensive. Abuse leads to depletion of family resources leading to poverty

  1. Loss of job and income
  2. Social problems

Abuse of drugs leads to family conflicts, leading to separation, divorce, family quarrels fights and even  murder (domestic violence)

  1. Accidents
  2. Frustrations
  3. Poor performance in school work
  4. Death

People die out of drug abuse. An over dose of heroine, cocaine kills. Alcohol can lead to a blackout, this  affects the brain

 

LESSON SEVEN: REMEDIES TO DRUG ABUSE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to:-

  1. List down the various remedies to drug use and abuse

Drug abuse has become a global problem.

Remedies or solutions include 

Law enforcement – through bodies such as UNDCP United Nations International

Drug Control Programme Anti Narcotics Police Units, NACADA National Agency for  the Campaign Against Drug Abuse so as to control abuse of Narcotics and other drugs.

Education

People to be educated on the effects of drugs. The curriculum from primary to secondary to include  topics on drug abuse.

Guidance and counselling 

Religious teachings – all religious condemn the abuse of drugs  Family values to be promoted. Parents should set good examples to their children

Every individual to cultivate individual values. Respect their body and take care of their bodies

Rehabilitation of drug users / abusers 

 

LESSON EIGHT: CHRISTIAN CRITERIA FOR EVALUATING THE USE OF LEISURE

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Describe the Christian’s criteria for evaluating the use of leisure

Criteria – criterion – a principle or standard for judging something.

How does a Christian determine whether a certain leisure activity is lawful, acceptable before God

criteria for evaluating the use of leisure 

  • Christians, should engage in leisure activities which promote their respect and dignity they should socialize with people who are morally upright (bad company corrupts good morals)
  • God ordains leisure hence it should serve God’s purpose.
  • Leisure should come after work
  • Leisure should be used for the good of others. The activities that are harmful to others should be avoided
  • Activities chosen should enrich their knowledge of God
  • Activities should provide service to others
  • Leisure doesn’t mean laziness
  • A Christian should not engage in a harmful activity to self but those that promote respect and dignity
  • Christians to avoid activities that lead to sin or to addiction
  • They should perform an activity which develop their physical emotional social and spiritual well  being
  • Leisure should be enjoyed with moderation
  • Activities for leisure should be moral, within the laws of God and pleasing to good.

Revision questions 

  1. Identify five (5) reasons why the taking of alcohol as a way of spending leisure is condemned
  2. Write down five ways in which modern Christians use their leisure time
  3. Give five ways in which drug use and abuse could affect a Christian identify ways in which Christians can overcome temptations to drug use and abuse
  4. Why is leisure important in the life of a Christian?
  5. What factors have contributed to the misuse of leisure in Kenya?
  6. state the factors that have led to the misuse of drugs in Kenya
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CHRISTIAN APPROACHES TO WORK

LESSON ONE: DEFINITION OF TERMS

Learning outcomes. By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  1. Explain the meaning of work. Vocation, profession, trade, craft, and job
  2. Give general reasons why people work

Work 

Use of energy, physical or mental, for the purpose of improving human life. It is any activity that requires  expenditure of energy or application of skills e.g. studying, teaching, cooking, farming etc.

Vocation 

Work can be described as a vocation, profession, trade, craft, career or a job.

Vocation is from a Latin word “Vocare” which means call ‘

Christians believe that every individual has been called of God to various duties.

Vocation is work that requires special skills, special training or a unique call or a special mission in  society.

Profession 

Work that is characterized by a code of ethics, lengthy specialized training, advance knowledge and self – disciple. Professionals have their own set standards. The professionals determine entry requirements  for new members and usually have machinery for dealing with errant members. E.g. Law, medicine,  architecture etc.

A trade 

Refers to an occupation, a way of making a living. Some trades require specialized training examples  hairdressing

A craft 

An occupation which requires manipulative skills or use of the hands e.g. woodcarving, pottery,  weaving. A craft may be a trade depending on the nature of occupation.

A career 

An occupation that one chooses to pursue in his/her life. It’s the general way of earning a living.

Job 

Refers to tasks performed, services rendered in return for payment of wages. Most jobs are temporary  others casual and others permanent and pension able.

What determines one’s career, vocation?

  1. Available opportunities for future development in a particular job
  2. The need to serve others especially the church and the needy
  3. Interests, strengths, talents, abilities
  4. Inclination or attraction to a certain kind of work
  5. Pressure from parents, peers etc General reasons why people work  a) It’s an essential element of life
  6. God ordained work. Humans work for their food
  7. Work contributes to the development of the community
  8. Work is personal. It defines a person
  9. People work to earn a living
  10. People work for enjoyment, leisure
  11. To assist and give to the needy
  12. To get luxuries
  13. People work to raise their standards of living
  14. For self satisfaction and fulfillment
  15. For personal development
  16. To keep a person occupied and not idle
  17. To acquire wealth and status in the society
  18. To socialize with other members of the society
  19. To attain independence and not depend on someone else

LESSON TWO: TRADITIONAL AFRICAN ATTITUDE TO WORK

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson, you should be able to:

  1.  Explain importance of work
  2. Work is essential to the well being of the individual and survival of the community
  3. Work ensured basic needs such as food, shelters etc were provided.
  4. In traditional African society work was divided according to the age, gender, and status e.g. chief, elder of the individual.
  5. Everyone was a worker. Boys assisted in herding, fishing, girls assisted in cooking fetching firewood.

Women cooked, took care of babies constructed houses (maasai) etc.  5. Works among the traditional African societies included pastoralist, farmers, livestock keeping, fishing,  bee keeping etc

  1. Work was a communal affair; people would work together and assist each other
  2. Work was not for a wage (Money). The rewards of work-included food, communal unity, acquisition of moral values etc.
  3. Hard work was emphasized, laziness was condemned
  4. There were some specific works for specialization e.g. herbal medicine men, divination, prophecy, rain making, pottery etc.
  5. Work involved giving prayers, offerings, and sacrifices to God Through work, the basic needs of the individual, community were fulfilled
  6. Through work potentials; talents and skills were explored, acquired and utilized.
  7. Work had a religious dimension as well as a social dimension. It brought people together improving their relations
  8. SAE
  9. Find out how different communities in Kenya lived in the past and how they live today
  10. How did the lifestyle of the communities influence daily activities

 

LESSON THREE: CHRISTIAN TEACHING ON WORK

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Describe the christens teachings about work

The Christian teaching on work is based mainly on the interpretation of the bible, the teachings of Jesus  and the teachings of the apostles. Some of the teachings are: –

  1. God himself instituted work. He created the heavens and the earth and all in it. Since God worked man should work. (Gen. 2:1)
  2. God’s work of creation is good (Gen. 1:31) Christians should endeavor to produce good works
  3. Work is a duty, an obligation, a command Christians are responsible for God’s creation (Gen.2: 15).

They are to protect it – animals, birds, plants, marine life are all under the care of man.

  1. Human beings should work to acquire their basic needs (Genesis. 1:29 – 30, 3:19) God blesses the work of our hands
  2. Human beings are co – creators with God (Gen.1: 28) God continue to create through human beings.

Human beings glorify God through their work.

  1. God reveals himself through his work of creation. God had a purpose for his creation. He is orderly, source of life, Almighty etc.
  2. Work is a co – operative undertaking. Eve was created to be Adam’s helper (Gen. 2:20) Christians should co – operate in their undertakings
  3. Hard work is praised and laziness is looked down upon. (Proverbs 31:27). Christians should work for their daily needs and not become a burden to others.
  4. Work should be accompanied with rest (Gen.2: 2) God rested on the 7th day from all his work. God commanded the Israelites to rest on the 7th day.
  5. People should enjoy what they have worked for (Ecc.3: 22) Work should be done for the glory of God and for the good of the society.
  6. People should work honestly not steal but work to earn an honest living (Eph.4: 28)
  7. Those who do not work should not eat

They should always work since God is always at a work (John 15:17)

 

LESSON FOUR: ROLES OF PROFESSIONAL ETHOS, ETHICS AND CODES IN THE SOCIETY

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson, you should be able to:

1. Define the following terms, professional ethics, professional codes and professional ethos

2. Describe the role of ethics

Definitions 

Professional ethics –: principles of behaviour / conduct that guide members of a particular profession.

What workers are allowed to do and not to do.

Professional ethos 

The group identity of members of a profession, their unique custom or character e.g. what identifies  doctors, lawyers etc.

Profession codes or code of ethics 

Collection of laws arranged systematically according to major concerns and core functions of the profession.

Roles 

  • To regulate the behaviour of professional (workers)
  • Enables professionals to understand their role
  • Ensures professionals provide quality of services to their clients
  • To encourage respect among professionals
  • Give guidance on how professionals should relate to one another
  • They safe guard professionals against being compromised / misused
  • They determine expected level of performance
  • They serve as a measure of competence
  • Act as a measure of quality service
  • They protect the professionals
  • They provide a reference point for disciplining (used to discipline the errant professional)
  • They inspire respect and high esteem for professionals
  • Through professional codes, ethics, ethos, professional earn public trust

 

LESSON FIVE: VIRTUES RELATED TO WORK

Learning outcome. By the end of the lesson the learner should be able to:

  1. Define the term virtue
  2. Give examples of virtues related to work

Definition 

A virtue is a good human habit. It’s a moral principle, moral quality or goodness of character and  behaviour.

Examples of virtues elated to work

  • Diligence – hardworking
  • Honesty, integrity – ability to be relied upon (Integrity) Honest is being truthful.
  • Faithfulness – being trustworthy and loyal
  • Responsibility – ability to make decisions and take action independently. Being mindful of other people’s welfare
  • Tolerance – ability to bear with others or with difficult situations

 

LESSON SIX: MORAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF EMPLOYERS AND EMPLOYEES

Learning outcomes: by the end of the lesson, you should be able to: –

  1. State and explain the duties and responsibilities of employers towards employees
  2. List the rights of employers
  3. Outline the moral duties of employees
  4. List the rights of employees

Employers: government, non – governmental organization, private sector – individuals, company, selfemployment.

Employers have several duties and responsibilities towards their employees. They are:

  • To organize and conduct business efficiently for the benefit of the institution, employer, community
  • To respect the employee, treat them with dignity
  • Pay a fair wage to the employee
  • Ensure good healthy and safe working conditions
  • Provide social welfare for the employees e.g. time off, leave days, time for recreation
  • Grant leave as required by law or the terms of contract
  • Take care of the welfare of the employees give medical cover, pension scheme etc
  • To motivate their employees
  • To reward employees
  • Compensate employees made redundant

Rights of the employer 

Employers have a right to / are entitled to

  • Get profits from their businesses
  • Carry out their businesses without unfair taxation
  • Form association with other employers
  • Obtain and conduct business
  • Hire, dismiss employees in accordance with the requirements of their firms and contract
  • Demand a fair days work
  • Conduct business without subjection to unfair conditions and competitions

Moral duties of the employees 

  1. Carry out their duties to the best of their ability without supervision
  2. Respect and protect the property of the employer
  3. Encourage peaceful solutions to any problems encountered in their work place
  4. To work diligently for self – fulfillment and development
  5. To respect their employer and fellow employees
  6. Observe terms of contract with employer
  7. Be loyal, honest, respect to the employer

Rights of the employees 

To receive fair wages

To have a reasonable work load

Have reasonable hours of work

Have safety and protection at work

Right to join a labour union

Right to further individual training and development education

Rights to retirement, terminal benefits

Rights to a fair opportunity for provision

A right to time for rest

Right to Favourable working conditions

 

LESSON SEVEN: CHRISTIANS APPROACHES TO ISSUES RELATED TO EMPLOYMENT

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to; –

  1. Define the following terms, wages and industrial action
  2. State the Christian teachings on wages
  3. List the reasons for industrial action
  4. State the results of workers strike/ industrial action
  5. Explain the Christian approaches towards strikes

Wages and industrial action (Strikes) 

A wage is payments for work done. Payment is in modern times done according to hours, weeks or days  that one works.

Christian teachings on wages

  •  Human beings have the right to work for a decent living (Matt.20:1 – 16) They should be paid for their  work.
  • Workers should be paid wages to the amount and value of their work (1 Timothy 5:18)
  • Wages should be paid as agreed upon (Mathew 20:13)
  • Employers should not take advantage of the poverty of the employee (Deuteronomy 24: 14 – 15)
  • Human beings should not be enslaved to work (Ex.5:22 – 23)
  • Employers who degrade their workers in wages are condemned (Deut.24:14 – 15, Jer.22:13)
  • Oppression is condemned (Amos 5:18, 8;4)
  • Workers wages should never be withheld (James 5:4)

Industrial action 

Also commonly called ‘Strike’ this is an effort by workers to stop work in protest by boycott go-slow sit – ins or refuse to work. There has been increase of industrial action in the recent past in most countries of  the world.

Reasons for industrial actions 

  • Due to increased awareness of workers rights
  • Exposure to global trends through the media
  • Formation of trade unions that fight for the rights of workers
  • Due to poor working conditions
  • Underpaying workers
  • Threatening workers with unjustified dismissals
  • Suspending the workers / interdiction – unjustly
  • A hostile working environment

Results of workers strikes (industrial / action  a) Pay cuts

  1. Demotions
  2. Loss of jobs
  3. Employers suffer losses
  4. Inflation
  5. Injuries even death when confronted by police
  6. Victimization of some individuals
  7. Bitterness among the workers and employers

Christian approaches towards strikes 

  1. Christians recommend a peaceful co – existence between workers and employers
  2. There should be fairness, justice, love among workers, employees
  3. There should be an open communication channel across the ranks from top to bottom
  4. Employees should not destroy property
  5. Working conditions should be better and improved
  6. Employees to be human when dealing with employees

LESSON EIGHT: CHILD LABOUR

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the term child labour
  2. State the reasons why children are employed
  3. State the disadvantages of child labour
  4. List down the causes of child labour
  5. Describe the position of the church in dealing with child labour A child is a person below 18 years. A child does not have an identity card, does not vote (in Kenya).

According to International Labour Organization the minimum employment age is 14 years.

Child labour 

It is engaging a person below the age of 14 years in wage / paid employment.

Reasons why children are employed 

  • To provide cheap labour
  • They cannot fight for proper terms
  • They are easily hired and fired

Disadvantages of child labour 

Children are not yet mentally and physically prepared to do adult jobs.

This leads to

  1. Exploitation of children
  2. Children paid less, taken advantage of
  3. It inhibits the growth of a child and denies them a chance to enjoy their childhood
  4. It deprives them of their right to basic education
  5. It exposes children to hazards (dangers) from machines, chemicals
  6. Heavy workload deprives children of social educational, moral, psychological, physical rights Places where children are employed
  • Plantations – coffee, tea
  • Domestic services – homes
  • Tourism sector
  • Industries
  • Children are trafficked and employed as commercial sex workers

Causes of child labour – reasons why children work

  • Lack of money / poverty
  • Death of parents
  • Dropping out of school due to pregnancy, indiscipline, (truancy), poor academic performance or lack of school fees.
  • Those who never went or taken to school
  • Lack of good role models e.g. coast province Mombasa, Malindi has several of the financially stable people being school dropouts, engaged in drug trafficking, commercial sex etc.
  • Influence of cultural values e.g. circumcision of boys in some communities is done later in life and one is declared an adult e.g. the kikuyu circumcising at 13 years, or 12 years
  • Children being lured by employers
  • Greed for material benefits
  • Being homeless ending up as a street child

Position of church in dealing with child labour

  • The church condemns it
  • It has put up homes for poor children (orphanages)
  • It provides guidance, counseling to both parents and children – Children are blessing from God hence should be loved and cared for  – Parents have the responsibilities to protect their children from harm.

 

LESSON NINE: UNEMPLOYMENT AND SELF –EMPLOYMENT

Learning outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the term unemployment and self employment
  2. State the causes of unemployment
  3. Describe the response of Christians to issues of unemployment
  4. List the problems faced by self employed people

Unemployment 

When people are capable and willing to work but are unable to find a viable income or occupation it is  referred to as unemployment.

Causes of unemployment 

  • Preference for prestigious white collar jobs (Office jobs, non – manual jobs)
  • Corruption – tribalism, nepotism, bribery denying jobs to the qualified in preference for the
  • Unequal distribution of wealth – some regions are more resourceful than others. Industries, good infrastructure concentrated in some areas.
  • Inadequate resources for self – employment (lack of capital, skills)
  • Limited job opportunities – probably due to high population growth 6 Few international investors in Kenya, probably due to high crime rate, insecurity

Identify ways of creating job opportunities  Response of Christians to issues of unemployment

  1. They encourage self – employment in cases of unemployment
  2. They have set up vocational training, polytechnics to train people towards jobs that are for self – employment
  3. Christians condemn idleness

Self-employment 

Self-employment is an economic activity initiated, controlled by an individual. It is an occupation in  which a person initiates a personal enterprise and manages it with the help of others.

Examples 

Small businesses enterprises, Jua kali sector, music industry, entertainment (e.g. comedians),  community work, agriculture etc

Problems / challenges 

  • Some lack sufficient capital to start a business and keep it running
  • Lack of necessary skills to run the business
  • High taxation leading to some business closing down
  • Small scale traders face undue competition from larger firms

Revision questions 

  1. What is work?
  2. List any six reasons why people work
  3. Explain T.As attitude towards work
  4. List some of the factors that have changed the attitude towards work in the modern society
  5. What are the rights of employers?
  6. State the duties of employees
  7. Why has child labour become common in Kenya?
  8. What are the causes of unemployment in Kenya?
  9. What can the government do to reduce unemployment in Kenya?
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CHRISTIAN APPROACHES TO HUMAN SEXUALITY, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY

Christian approaches refer to how Christians view and handle issues of human sexuality, marriage and the family in accordance with Christians ethics. Through marriage, the family is formed.

 LESSON ONE: HUMAN SEXUALITY

Learning Outcomes.

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  1. Define human sexuality, marriage, and family
  2. Explain the Christian teaching of human sexuality
  3. Assess the traditional African understanding of human sexuality
  4. Determine gender roles in traditional African home
  5. Explain Christians teachings about male and female relationships
  6. Explain and appreciate Christian teaching on responsible sexual behaviour
  7. Explain Christian teaching on irresponsible sexual behaviour and their consequences

 

  1. Human sexuality. This is a sacred gift from God. It was given to Adam and Eve. Human sexuality is that which makes us male or female. It is our biological or physiological differences associated with the state of being male or female. It is part of our biological make up. Males and female have different body structures, features, appearances and biological characteristics. In terms of physical strength more men are stronger than females. Besides the biological make up, we have an emotional side, which includes our attitudes, and feelings. Females are said to be more emotional and talkative than males. Human sexuality is also in our brain and mind and it is what makes us human beings. If you look at animals they also have different physiological features based on sexual differences.

 

  1. Christian teaching on human sexuality. Males and females are God’s creation. Men and women were created for many reasons. These are (1) to be fruitful and to multiply; and (2) for companionship. In Genesis we learn that men and women share the image of God because God intended man and woman to play complementary roles and both are equal before God.

Sex in marriage is a sign of love and it is sacred. In marriage man / and woman become one flesh. Both of them have the ability to control their sexual desires. Christian teaching forbids: sex before marriage, adultery or unfaithfulness, and other unnatural sexual behaviours like lesbianism, homosexuality or being gay, and incest. God created human body and it is to be kept holy. Chastity is encouraged while unfaithfulness in marriage is discouraged. Husbands / wives are to respect one another and give to each other in mutual love.

 

  1. Traditional African understanding of human sexuality. Human sexuality is highly valued in traditional African communities. It is understood in terms of marriage and parenthood. Procreation was the sole purpose of sex. Sex was to be practiced in marriage and it was regarded as another sacred duty. Adultery was discouraged and offenders punished.

Irresponsible sexual relationships were forbidden. Virginity before marriage was highly valued. If a girl lost her virginity before marriage, she was treated with scorn and punishment. If a boy impregnating a girl, he was fined.

In traditional African society it was a taboo to discuss openly sex matters. Grandparents taught sex education to their grandchildren. Sex education was taught during initiation stages. Free mixing of girls and boys was not allowed except under supervision. Girls were married off immediately after initiation to avoid temptation of engaging in pre-marital sex. To reinforce self – discipline in relationships between the opposite sexes the African traditional society instilled the fear of supernatural curses through myths, taboos and rules. Marital status. Husbands and wives were expected to relate to each other, their parents, and in lawsaccording to the community customs. Conflicts between a husband and a wife were resolved through intervention of relatives.

 

  1. Gender roles. There are specific chores and duties for either male or female in African traditional societies. Roles were therefore according to gender. Boys went hunting, herding, while girls fetched firewood, and helped in cooking. At an early age, girls and boys would mix freely as they played together. Mature boys and girls however, were restricted from mixing freely without supervision by elders. But there was gender identification. The boys identified with their fathers and other male adults, while girls identified themselves with their mother and other female adults.

 

Education. Children belonged to the community and not just to their biological parents. At the adolescent stage; 13 – 18 years education was given to the adolescents and intensified at initiation stage. Boys and girls were taught traditional rules and secrets of the society during initiation. Learning was informal. Knowledge was communicated through songs, stories and riddles among other forms of presentations. All adults acted as parents to the young ones.

 Socialisation. Men were socialized to be superior, while women were socialized to accept their subordinate position and role. Everyone knew and accepted what he/she was culturally supposed to do.

 Division of labour was based on sex. In the African communities, despite their differences, there were many common customary roles, rules, regulations, taboos and beliefs that governed the practices related to male – female relationships from early childhood to old age. These traditional African practices relating to male – female relationships existed at various levels. In all of them, man held superior positions when compared to those of women. Age. Old women and men were accorded respect. They were consulted for advice and counsel. Kinship system was emphasized.

 

  1. Christian teaching on male- female relationships. We learn that the husband is the head of the house and should love his wife like Christ loved the church. Once a wife is loved, she should submit to her husband. We also learn that both male and female are equal and co – creators with God. Adam and Eve were created to complement each other. Likewise men and women should love each other. Jesus taught that each man should have one wife and vice versa. Once married, the husbands’ body belongs to the wife and hers belong to him. If that is the case, wife and husband should avoid immorality.

Males and females are to relate freely. But the youth are to avoid the passions of youth. These are sexual sins. There are no specific chores or duties for either male or female. Relationship between sexes should be governed by love, chastity, respect, self-control, and self-discipline. Parents are to love their children, while children are to obey and honor their parents. Parents are asked to bring up their children in a Godly way.

 

LESSON TWO. CHRISTIAN TEACHING ABOUT HUMAN SEXUALITY

Lesson Outcomes.

By the end of this lesson, you should

  1. Outline Christian teaching on responsible sexual behaviour
  2. Analyse Christian teaching on irresponsible sexual behaviour
  3. Discuss effects and consequences of irresponsible sexual behaviour
  4. Give examples of the effects of irresponsible sexual behaviour

Sexual behaviour is part of human behaviour. The Bible gives principles of sexual behaviour in the Ten Commandments.

 

Christian teaching on responsible human sexuality.

Christianity teaches us about responsible sexual behaviour. Being responsible means that one is exercising self – control or self-discipline in matters of sexual behaviour. Self-discipline is necessary when we have a relationship with the opposite sex (Read, 1 Cor.7: 9 1 Peter 5:8). It is called responsible sexual behaviour, which is obedience to God’s commands. Christians promote healthy social relationship between boys and girls, men and women, and husbands and wives. Responsible sex is between male and female. Sexual intercourse is allowed only between married couples (1 Cor.7: 3 – 5). Married couples are obliged to be sexually faithful to one another (Heb.13: 4) adultery is condemned (exodus 25:14). Relationship between a husband / wife should be

one of respect faithfulness, love, care, mercy, submission, tolerance, and forgiveness

 

Christian teaching on irresponsible sexual behaviour.

There are many irresponsible sexual behaviours.

They include among others all acts and forms of: perversion, misuse, and abuse of sex, incest, rape, fornication, adultery, homosexuality, lesbianism or gay, prostitution, concubine, masturbation, bestiality and child marriages among others. These irresponsible sexual behaviours are against God’s will for humanity. Christians are to shun irresponsible sexual behaviour. This is because their bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit. Thus whatever Christians do with their bodies, it should be for the glory of God. Let us now discuss in brief some of the irresponsible sexual behavior; beginning with

 

  1. Incest, which is a sexual relationship between people who are closely related by blood. For example, sex between a brother/sister, father / daughter. Incest is condemned in the Bible. It was punishable by death in the Old Testament. Read Leviticus 18:6 – 8.

 

  1. Rape cannot be justified and it is condemned in The Bible. Rape is an act of forcing another person to have sexual intercourse without his or her consent. It is sexual violence and a crime against humanity. It is also a denial, and a violation of human rights of the victims who are sexually assaulted. Victims of rape include boys, men, girls, women, and babies especially girls.

Rape is an expression of hatred toward the opposite sex. In traditional African society rape was abhorred and culprits were punished by death. In Kenya rape is punishable by 20 years imprisonment. Indecent assaults or sexual abuses such as touching a person of the opposite sex without their permission or use of vulgar language are both punishable by up to 5 years imprisonment.

 

  1. Fornication. This is consensual sexual intercourse between unmarried people. It is condemned by both African and Christian teachings and punishment in African traditional society was by either payment of fines, stoning, and ritual cleansing. In the Old Testament, men were forced to marry the girl. Jesus said that fornication was due to people’s evil thoughts. Abstinence for the youth is encouraged and preached.

Why do the youth engage in pre – marital sex? There are several reasons. Some of them are: sexual curiosity, proving manhood, human weakness, lack of self control, testing fertility, fear of being jilted / rejected; commercial sex for money; copying acts in the print and electronic media. Others reasons are frustrations, drug abuse, bribe to get a job and permissiveness in the society.

 

  1. Adultery is committed by adults who have extra marital affairs; between “married partner and another party”. Adultery is having sex outside marriage with a person with whom one is not married to. Adultery is caused by lack of self – control, sexual dissatisfaction, long periods of wife and husband separation, sexual dysfunction and vengeance by an initially faithful spouse who wants to be even with the unfaithful spouse.

 

  1. Prostitution. This is the practice of giving sexual pleasure for money or other material benefits. A prostitute can either be male or female. Prostitutes are referred to as commercial – sex workers.

Why is there prostitution? There are factors leading to prostitution. These are economic reasons such as unemployment, poverty, rejection of a girl at home, drug abuse, stress, anger, anxiety, frustrations in the family and pornography. The church condemns prostitution because it defiles the body, which is a temple of the Holy Spirit. It’s sexual immorality. Read Gal 5: 19 – 21.

 

  1. Homosexuality/ Gay/ Lesbianism. This is sex between people of the same sex for example; man and man (homosexuality), woman and woman (lesbianism). Homosexuality is a common practice in modern world. It is also a church problem. The Anglican Church in USA, and Canada have accepted homosexuality. The Anglican Church has gay bishops. African Anglican churches are opposing this practice.

What makes people prefer sex with the same sex? The Christian view is that homosexuality is a sign of a lack of Christian moral values. It may also be due to confinement in a prison and permissiveness in society. If it is allowed to continue, it shall disintegrate traditional African values. Because of its threat to God’s people, the Church condemns homosexuality. Other reasons for condemning it is because (1) God created a male and a female. Read, Genesis 1:28. Two, sex is sacred. Homosexuality is an unnatural relationship, which lowers human dignity. It does not provide sexual fulfillment (as traditionally). Homosexuality is illegal in Kenya.

 

  1. Sexually transmitted Diseases (STDs). There are many diseases passed from one person to the other through sex. These are gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes genitalis is, hepatitis B, clamydia, trichonomiasis, HIV/AIDS. Lets discuss them one by one.

HIV / AIDS. This is human immune deficiency virus (HIV) that causes acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) condition. Syndrome refers to many symptoms. HIV is transmitted largely through sex with an infected partner; through blood transfusion; sharing sharp objects with infected persons; and from an infected mother to the unborn child. The HIV virus destroys the white blood cells, and weakens the body ‘s immune system. When the body is weak, it is not able to fight, and defend itself against infections. Persons with the virus are vulnerable and susceptible to opportunistic infections.

The signs / symptoms of AIDS are manifestations of symptoms of the opportunistic infections. Some symptoms include persistent coughs, loss of weight, oral thrush, loss of appetite, and diarrhea. Churches encourage Christians to be compassionate to HIV/AIDS affected people, and to support the infected and the affected individuals like the orphans, widows, and widowers. It also teaches against sexual immorality and against all forms of discrimination.

Gonorrhea is caused by a bacterium called “Neisseria gonorrhea”. Its symptoms appear a4 days after infection. Its symptoms are burning sensation when passing urine; pain or discomfort in the genitals; sticky discharge or pus in the vagina or through the urethra. The good news is that Gonorrhea is curable if treated early.

Syphilis. Primary syphilis may show up in the form of a sore or a wound in the genitals a few days after infection. The wound heals by itself without treatment after some time. Syphilis infection may take several years about 7 years before its symptoms re appear. The symptoms of syphilis are a painless sore or pimple on the man’s penis or woman’s vulva; and swelling of the glands in the groin. Other symptoms, which may appear later, are skin rashes, and sores either in the face armpits, under breasts, mouth or throat.

Herpes genital is a sexual disease caused by a virus. It creates wounds in the genitals. A pregnant woman can transmit the infection to her newborn baby during delivery. This disease can be controlled although there is not an effective treatment.

Hepatitis B virus causes Hepatitis B.

It is transmitted through sex, injections by unsterilized needles and contact with contaminated blood. The infection does not show on the genitals. The signs and symptoms of Hepatitis B include yellowness of the eyes (jaundice) due to liver damage and pain around the upper abdomen.

The effects of irresponsible sexual behaviour.

There are many effects of irresponsible sexual behaviour. They include among others HIV / AIDS, sexually transmitted infections (STI), abortion; family separations and divorces, deaths, unplanned pregnancies; children living in the streets; school drop outs and psychological problems.

  1. Effects of incest. These are many. One, incest undermines the healthy relationships between members of a family as it brings shame and guilt among the parties involved. Two, incest destroys relationships within the family and can lead to breaking up of a marriage. Three, incest destroys self-esteem, self –respect, and dignity of the victim. We find that abused boys and girls end up having problems when trying to establish healthy relationship with members of the opposite sex. Four, incest can lead to pregnancy, and abortion. And as you have read in the newspapers, it can lead to infections with sexually transmitted diseases (S.T.I.’s) and HIV / AIDS. As I write, a father was jailed for life for raping his daughter and infecting her with HIV/AIDS virus.
  2. Effects of Rape. This crime has very serious consequences and harmful effects on the victim. Rape may result in pregnancy and can lead to physical, psychological, social, and spiritual side effects. The victim may suffer (1) serious physical injuries and (2) may contract the STI’s, and HIV / AIDs. The victim is traumatized, and ashamed of self. The victim suffers from guilt, loneliness, humiliation, posttraumatic stress disorders, and depression among others psychological manifestations. Young rape victims in particular may lose trust in the opposite sex. All these sufferings can lead to suicide and death.
  3. Effects of Fornication. Some of these are having children out of wedlock; feelings of distrust, guilt, and hurt; contracting STI’s and HIV/AIDS; loss of self-respect; early and forced marriage and abortion.
  4. Effects of Adultery. Christians teach against adultery because it is against God’s commandments and can lead to divorce, abortion, STI, HIV/AIDS, domestic violence, murder (death) and psychological problems.
  5. Effects of Prostitution are many. It can lead to break up of marriage, and family. It lowers a person’s dignity and can lead to unplanned pregnancies, school dropouts; infections such as STI’s and HIV /AIDS and improper use of family resources.
  6. Effects of homosexuality. It is a threat to procreation. It promotes loose short-term informal relationships and therefore promotes HIV / AIDS. Homosexual couples are prone to HIV/AIDS infections because of having many partners; although this is changing in USA where homosexual couples are being married in churches.

 

  1. Effects of Sexually transmitted diseases

HIV / AIDS effects are numerous. They include recurrent illness due to opportunistic infections. There is also stigmatization. Some individuals have feelings of guilt, anger, denial and depression. The sick persons have to look for extra finances to care for their health. They have the burden for medications, and special diet. HIV/AIDs has no cure and leads to death like many other diseases. Parents die and leave their children as orphans.

Gonorrhea effects are many. The disease damages a woman’s fallopian tubes leading to infertility; and a man’s epidydymis leading to sterility. An infected expectant mother can infect her newborn baby with gonorrhea. The disease may affect the eyes of the unborn child causing blindness. Gonorrhea can also cause inflammation of joints, the heart and liver.

Effects of Syphilis are damage to the heart, brain and the nervous system. This disease can lead to madness and death of the victim. If a child is infected while in the womb, or during birth, the brain maybe damaged. The child may have either physical deformities or the infected mother may give stillbirths. Effects Herpes genitals. Infection can cause severe brain damage; cancer of the neck of the womb. If a woman is pregnant, the disease can cause death of the baby. The wounds and sores exposes the sick person to HIV /AIDS infections.

Effects of Hepatitis B. This disease damages the liver and may lead to death of the infected person. It has a vaccine, but not treatment.

 

  1. Other consequences of irresponsible sexual behaviours These are death, unplanned pregnancies, children living in the streets, school dropouts and psychological problems related to irresponsible sexual behaviour. These include among others: stress, depression, self – pity, withdrawal, aggressiveness, and violence.

Stress is the response of the body and mind to any situation that exerts pressure or makes demands on a person. The intensity or pressure experienced determines the level of stress. Some of the signs of stress are: anxiety, worry, drop in performance, chest pains, mood swings, rebellion, ulcers, heart palpitations, fatigue and guilt feelings. BSolutions. To avoid stress, it is suggested that individuals should accept that one is stressed; identify sources of stress, rest, exercise, listening to therapeutic music and talk to a counselor. Depression. This is an acute mental disorder. It is also a state of hopelessness and low spirits. Depression can be mild or severe. It has physical, emotional and behavioural signs and symptoms. Let me caution you that it is only a medical doctor who can know if one has a depression or not. We are told by doctors that signs of a depression are: persistent headaches and chest pains; loss of appetite; too much appetite; loss of memory; insomnia i.e. lack of sleep; weight loss or gain; nervousness and mood swings; low self-confidence; suicidal tendencies and self-pity. Other signs and symptoms are loss of libido (sexual desire); poor performance in school and in work places; hopelessness; loss of interest in ones activities; hypertension and high blood pressure

 

Irresponsible social and human behaviour.

There are social and human behaviours that are contrary to Christian life. These unacceptable behaviours are abortion, and divorce.

Abortion is termination of pregnancy before the foetus is capable of independent life. There are two types of abortions. One is spontaneous abortion or miscarriage. The other is induced abortion, which is deliberate and illegal in Kenya. Induced abortion has been debated in Kenya. The main question is should abortion be legalized or not. This is because abortion is legal in some European countries. Why do mothers seeking abortion? There are many reasons, which are known only to mothers. These are one, pregnancy due to rape and incest. Two, if the mother believes that the unborn child will be a burden. This may be because the baby is conceived outside wedlock and the mother lacks economic resources to take care of the baby. Another reason maybe that the mother is in school, and she cannot look after the baby and continue with her education. Three, medical personnel may abort a deformed foetus or in order to save the life of the mother if it is in danger. Christian’s view of abortion as murder (Exodus20: 13). This is because abortion interferes with the mother’s body, and destroys the baby. Christian view is that the body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. God is the giver of life and He alone has the right to take it away. Abortion carries with it stigma and the effects mentioned above make Christians condemn abortion.

 

Effects of irresponsible social and human behaviour.

Effects of abortion are infertility, ectopic pregnancy, destruction of a woman’s body parts; fetal malformation; risk of the mother bleeding to death and destruction of uterus. Other effects are that the mother may experience in future still births, miscarriages, risk of barrenness; failed abortions leading to deformed babies and psychological problems that we have discussed. These are stress and depression.

 

Revision questions.

  1. Explain the T.A. understanding of human sexuality
  2. Explain Christian attitudes towards human sexuality
  3. In what ways is sex abused in Kenya?
  4. Why do you think minors are defiled or sexually abused in Kenya?
  5. Explain the Christian teaching on male/female relationships
  6. What is the Christian teaching on responsible sexual behaviour?
  7. List the different types of irresponsible sexual behaviour
  8. Explain the Christian teaching on irresponsible sexual behaviour
  9. State the effects of irresponsible sexual behaviour

 

LESSON THREE: MARRIAGE

Learning Outcomes. By the end of the lesson you should be able to;

  1. Explain in brief the meaning of marriage
  2. Explain Christian teachings about marriage
  3. Describe courtship in African Traditional society
  4. Discuss the traditional African and Christian approaches to marriage preparation
  5. Explain celibacy as an alternative to marriage

 

  1. Definition of marriage. Marriage is a binding legal union between a man and a woman who agree to have a lasting relationship as husband / wife. Marriage partners choose each other. In some cases, senior member of the family and church influence the choice of a marriage partner. When marrying partners agree to marry, they are joined in church and they become husband and wife. Marriage is thus a covenant in which the partners give themselves to one another.

Marriage involves other members of the community hence it is a social and community affair. Marriage is a permanent union. Marriage is a community requirement in which everyone in the community participates. Each person is expected to undergo marriage because it is a rite of passage. Marriage gives a person, a high social status and prestige in the community.

Marriage is also a covenant between a man and a woman that should not be broken. Two people are joined in marriage in order to procreate and perpetuate the community. Once married, a couple is allowed to have sexual relationship, and companionship. Marriage is an expression of and fulfillment of mutual love and comfort. It enhance unity; social prestige, and respect in society. Purpose of marriage is sexual fulfillment; cultural and social requirement; obligation to build a family; and procreation althoughchildren are a gift from God.

 

Forms of marriages

There are many forms of marriages. There is a marriage ceremony organised as a symbol or mark of the union between a man and a woman. These marriages ceremonies are either civil, or religious. The main religious ceremonies are Christian, Islamic, Hindu, and Sikh among others. We also have African customary ceremonies many of which are polygamous. Christianity does not allow polygamous marriage.

 

Secular approaches to marriage.

In the modern world, some people choose not to marry for personal reasons. Some people have children without getting married while others opt to have a marriage without children. Husband andwife are equal. Monogamy is practiced for economic reasons. In some families’ women are the heads of the family. Choosing a partner is an individual act and not communal. In marriage traditional qualities of a good wife such as industrious, honesty, and hospitality are not considered. The modern society values external beauty, financial status and social status. As a result, there is a high rate of marriage, separation, and divorce. At times young people fail to be married in church. There is no formalization of marriages. These marriages are called “Come-we-stay” arrangements.

 

Gender issues in marriage. The wife is subordinate to the husband but had rights. Marriage did not end with death of the husband. The wife was inherited by one of her husband’s brother. This is widow inheritance / Levirate marriage. She could also refuse to be inherited but remained married to that man even in death. The wife could not marry outside the family because of dowry. There was dowry payment to parents. If a wife died, the man would marry the sister of his dead wife. This is surrogate marriage. Those who did not marry were considered “lesser humans”. Young people were prepared for marriage during initiation, which was witnessed in a public ceremony. During marriage, couple makes vows to each other. The ancestors are invoked to bless the marriage.

 

Factors that lead to a stable, healthy and successful marriage

People are different and they understand their roles differently. Here am giving you a few suggestions.

Discuss with your study companions and come up with other suggestions. One important factor is mutual responsibility by the couple.

This occurs if there is mutual consultation with each other in decision-making.

Two is forgiveness of each other.

Three is good treatment of each other especially with equal respect. Four is sharing scriptures together.

Five is giving love and respecting each other.

Six is having a faithful sexual relationship and lastly being open and honest.

Seven is African traditional qualities of a good wife who is described as: hardworking, fertile, morally upright, generous, kind, obedient, humble, clean, beautiful, polite, warm hearted and hospitable.

Eight are the qualities of a good husband, which are described as: being able to provide good leadership in the family.

Other qualities are being aggressive, wise, brave, courageous, responsible and good property manager.

 

  1. Christian Teaching about Marriage. Christians teach that marriage is sacred and that it is a divine institution, which is ordained God. God started it when he created Adam and Eve. Marriage should therefore be monogamous and permanent as God protects marriages. The woman should submit to the husband who is told to love the wife as Christ loved the church. Church teaches respect of each other.

Marriage is complete even without children as it is between a male and a female. Marriage is not obligatory and it ends when one partner dies.

 

Christian’s preparation and approach to marriage

Christians organise youth seminars, and rallies to teach the youth how to choose marriage partners and how to treat wife / husbands; care for the children; behave towards in laws; acquire wealth (men); and head a family. Youth are taught to avoid sexual intimacy before marriage. Those intending to marry are encouraged to go for pre-marital counseling. During counseling, they are informed that love is the most important bond of unity in marriage. Church encourages partners to go for HIV /AIDs test before marriage. Marriage ceremony is conducted in church

 

Choice of a marriage partner

There are many ways of identifying a marriage partner. One is arrangement by parents. If not one can make an individual decision and choose a wife or husband. Two is through an intermediary or third party. In African traditional polygamous marriages, the first wife identified a wife for her husband. Girls would be given out to a chief as a gift

 

  1. Courtship in African Traditional society (A.T.S).

Courtship varied from community to community. Courtship is the period between engagement and wedding ceremony. During courtship premarital sex is forbidden. Girls and boys dressed with bracelets and rings. Courtship was important in A.T.S. This was because the man and woman who were girls and boys got to know each other better before marriage. It was a period when girls/boys were instructed in family life education. It was also a period for linking the two marrying families. The couple had time to learn about one another’s character, and know their families. It is a symbol (sign) of the girl’s presence in her home (maternal home). She continues to live with her own people.

The families and clan had an opportunity to check if the marrying couple was related and if their clans were acceptable to the parents. Courtship gives time to the two families to negotiate and pay the bride wealth or dowry.

Bridal Wealth, dowry, bride price are all expressions of partnership. The family of the man pays dowry to the family of the woman. Some churches disregard bride wealth, while others encourage it. Dowry is paid in different forms. The girl’s family decides what it wants. Will it be livestock (poultry, pigs, camels, cows, goats, sheep), beer, grain, jewellery and clothes among others.

 

Importance of dowry.

  • It acts as a compensation for the girls labour and seals the marriage covenant.
  • It is a public expression of appreciation for the coming of a new wife/mother into the man’s family.
  • It promotes friendship and cements relationship between families. It shows commitment and seriousness of the future husband.

After dowry payment, the woman belongs to her husband.

A ceremony is carried out depending on the community. Bride price payment is accompanied by marriage ceremonies. Lastly dowry helps in maintaining peace

Traditional African approaches to marriage preparation. Polygamy is one husband, married to many wives. Polygamy is allowed by the African traditional religion because it occurs if the first wife is barren; ensures that all women have husbands; prevents infertility; provides extra labour in farms. A polygamous man has a higher status because many wives symbolize wealth.

Children are important in a marriage because:

  • They promote social status of their parents.
  • They cement a bond of unity between husband / wife.
  • They are a source of labour, and wealth.
  • They are heirs to the family wealth
  • They provide security to the family.

 

Divorce is legal dissolution of marriage. Christians allow divorce because of specific grounds. Divorce was rare in African traditional societies. Divorce is granted under circumstances of: adultery, witchcraft, laziness, cruelty and disrespect of wife.

In the contemporary society, divorce is sought after or allowed because of: unfaithfulness in marriage or adultery; domestic violence; misuse of family resources; childlessness; in-law interference and alcohol abuse.

 

Legal reasons for divorce

According to the laws of Kenya, divorce is allowed under the following reasons; adultery; if a man deserts his wife for more than 3 years; if a partner becomes insane; and domestic violence for example, physical, and psychological torture.

 

Christian teaching about divorce.

Christians discourage divorce because marriage is a permanent status. There is no room for divorce. Church discourages divorce because of its adverse effects. Some Denominations allow divorce if there is adultery. God hates divorce. Married couples should remain faithful to each other.

 

Effects of divorce are strained relationships,

  • Children suffering psychologically and experiences of rejection.
  • A divorcee faces social stigma, rejection, and isolation.
  • If parents separate, they create single parent families. These families suffer from economic hardships and feelings of failure and inadequacy.

 

  1. Celibacy as an alternative to marriage.

Celibacy is a Latin word “Coelebes” meaning bachelor. Why do some people fail to marry? There are many reasons. Some of these are to pursue education leading to delayed marriage; and career demands (workaholic). Other people are discouraged by examples of failed marriages. Other reasons maybe economic independence, poor health, HIV /AIDS, mental illness; parental interference and disappointment from past failed relationships. This happens if parents do not approve a partner.

 

Revision questions

  1. Explain the traditional African understanding of marriage
  2. what is the importance of children in traditional African society?
  3. what is the Christian teaching about marriage?
  4. What is the importance of courtship period in T.As
  5. Why are many people opting for celibacy?

 

LESSON FOUR: THE FAMILY

Introduction.

As society grows and changes, the family grows and changes. As a result, there are several types and practices of the family. In this lesson, we shall discuss the traditional family as it is practiced in the Bible, the traditional African societies and some Christian families.

 Learning Outcomes.

By the end of the topic, the learner should be able to

  1. Explain types of families in society
  2. Analyse traditional African family values and practices
  3. Explain Christians family values and practices
  4. Discuss problems related to family life today
  5. Compare approaches to family by Christians and traditional African society
  6. Discuss responsible parenthood

 

The family.

What is a family? Family is the basic social unit of human society. This basic unit is extended to include relatives bound together by blood, marriage, friendship, and adoption. They are all members of the family. In Kenya, there are many types of families.

 

Types of families

  1. Nuclear family – is parents and their children. .It is father, mother, and children. There is an increase of monogamous families or nuclear because of urbanization as rural youth come to towns in search of white-collar jobs. Migration to cities by people of different tribes has led to pluralism. Education, high cost of living have led to the death of the African culture, which required men and women to marry many partners to produce many children to defend their tribe.

 Advantages of nuclear families are many.

One, the man is able to give undivided attention to one wife and children.

Two, there is sharing of mutual love, and peace in the home.

Three it is economical to manage one family.

Four there is little competition for attention, less strife, quarrels and stress.

Five, it is easier to monitor the behaviour of a few children.

 

  1. Polygamous family – Father, mothers, children. These type of family have disadvantages in modern Kenya. Modern society is a cash economy. Thus if a man has many wives and children, they may lack basic necessities like food, shelter, education and clothes.

 

  1. Single parent family – one parent, and children. Single – parent families are created by several circumstances. One is by parents separating. Separation of parents is due to several reasons. These are for example, one partner going to another country and failing to return to his or her country and family.

Two, a single family is created by divorce. Divorced parents may decide not to marry again. Three is when one parent refuses to marry. This happens when a girl gets pregnant and the boy does not marry her. Four is because of death of a spouse. The remaining parent may decide not to remarry. Five is when some mothers decide to have children without marriage. This may not be correct as there is no research to suggest it. Six is imprisonment of one partner for a long time. One parent is left looking after children because one is in jail.

 

  1. Extended family – father, mother, children, uncles, aunts, and cousins. This is the common family type in traditional African communities.

 

  1. Children led family. This happens when parents die and the 1st born takes care of brothers and sisters including cousins.

 

  1. Grandparent headed family. The HIV/AIDs epidemic has introduced this type of family where grandparents take care of their grandchildren due to the death of both parents especially the mother due to HIV / AIDS disease. This scourge has made many children orphans. In other cases parents go for further studies abroad and leave their children with their parents.

 

Traditional African family values and practices.

In African societies creation of a family is through marriage, and subsequent procreation. Family is viewed as a sacred institution in African society. The African traditional family includes the dead (ancestors), the unborn children and the living.

An African traditional family has obligations and duties.

These were (1) offering sacrifices to ancestors, (2) pouring libations; and (3) giving the dead decent burials (4) providing basic needs to their children (5) bringing up children to be morally upright individuals. Further to this, the African traditional family is responsible for the upbringing, caring, and protection of its children. This is demonstrated by the nuclear family, which provides necessities required to meet and satisfy the economic needs of its members.

The African traditional family is expected to participate in communal activities. Work in the family was divided according to age, gender and social status. Each family member worked for its basic needs as well as the welfare of the community.

 

The African family had well-stated and practiced values

There were

(1) respect for family members

(2) providing responsible parenthood, which is the process of bringing up children to become all round or self-reliant persons

(3) educating children in all aspects of life. Parents and the extended family members helped their children to develop intellectually and cognitively.

The family taught children physical skills. It also gave children confidence to appreciate their physical strength. Children were taken through a rigorous physical curriculum of games such as wrestling, swimming and running to develop their physical strength. Children’s bodies were nourished thoroughly. They were served good and nutritious food, which improved their muscle strength.

Children were taught social skills. They learnt how to behave towards adults, peers and grandparents.

They developed social skills since parents allowed them to socialize and interact with other children, grandparents and the community. This made them grow socially, emotionally and psychologically.

They had a curriculum for teaching and training in traditional African religious values, family matters, moral and social values. This teaching of children started from an early age. The teaching method used was observation and practice. Parents taught by being good role models. They were expected to model desired values and family practices. Children were taught how to relate with one another as brothers and sisters. Parents were to show tolerance to children. These values show that African parents understood their parental roles and responsibilities.

These values were sometimes; exploited by the irresponsible family members or specific individuals.

This exploitation encouraged dependency, leading to conflicts, competition, hatred, and jealousy.

Christian parents are expected to train their children to know God; be self -disciplined, and follow the Christian way of living. Another duty is to provide basic needs to their children.

 

Christian understanding of the family

Among Christians, family is sacred and instituted by God. Read again about the Christian teachings about marriage.

 

Role of children in the Christian family

A Christian child is expected to obey parents, honor them, and respect parents. This is one of the Ten Commandments given to Moses by God.

 

Parenting styles

  1. Dictatorship /authoritative / autocratic – the parents is the final authority, imposes decisions
  2. Permissive or liberal style – also referred to as “Laissez faire” the children do as they want
  3. Democratic style – parents discuss with their children on family issues. This is the best style.

 

Problems related to family life today

Families are faced with numerous problems such as

  1. Children abuse – sex assault, beating
  2. Domestic violence – abusive language, frequent fights, emotional abuse
  3. Diseases e.g. HIV / AIDS epilepsy , autism.
  4. Children with special needs, blindness, deafness or those with mental challenges, motor co – ordination (Autism)
  5. Separation, divorce
  6. Childlessness
  7. Single parent families – economic hardships
  8. Misuse of family resources, economic crisis
  9. Affluence – a lot of wealth
  10. Unemployment, underemployment
  11. Retrenchment – laying off of some employees in order to reduce the workforce
  12. Mismanagement of family finances
  13. Alcohol and drug abuse
  14. The generation gap
  15. Poor relations with in-laws
  16. Cultural and religious differences

 

  • Traditional African approaches to problems related to family life today

1) Individuals were prepared for challenges of family life right from childhood

2) Adolescents, initiates were given family life education

3) People entered marriage knowing that it’s a lifelong union

4) Rules were clear to govern marriage relations

5) Polygamy helped reduce unfaithfulness

6) There were no single parent families. Members lived together reducing loneliness

7) Widows / widowers were encouraged to marry again

8) Traditional brew was taken in moderation

 

Christian’s approaches to problems related to family life today

1) Christian families are obliged to live according to Christian principles and values such as mutual respect, self-discipline, understanding, honesty, faithfulness, love and forgiveness

2) Premarital counseling is carried out

3) Church holds regular seminars and conferences on family life matters. Love and respect for each other. Christian wife to submit to husband who is head of the family. They are taught to take each other as complementary and equal partners.

4) Women are encouraged to form participate in church organizations e.g. mothers union, women’s guild where they learn roles of being a wife, mother, and a woman.

5) Some churches offer advice to families on management of their families. They are encouraged to have investments.

6) Breadwinner is encouraged to write a written will

7) To improve the parent – child relationship churches offer guidance and counseling to the youth Christian parents are advised to set positive role models to their children

9) Parents are encouraged to be open and promote effective communication with their children

10) Churches in case of serious family conflicts such as child abuse, domestic violence, advise legal action.

11) Churches organize youth seminars where they talk about drug abuse, premarital sex, negative peer pressure and media influence etc.

12) Relevant information is passed through books, pamphlets, magazines, media FM, TV etc.

13) Some churches welcome unwed mothers

14) Churches provide health services, guidance on HIV / AIDS

15) Some churches care for widows, orphans widowers and the needy

 

Revision questions

State the different types of families

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INTRODUCTION TO CHRISTIAN ETHICS

Instructions.

Form four work covers contemporary issues in a Christians life. You are advised to read newspapers, listen to radio news, watch television news and current affairs and any other relevant news source. Work in twos. Give yourself topics to study and then give a presentation to your partner or co learner.

 Learning outcomes.

After reading and discussing Christian ethics, you should be able to:

  1. Explain the meaning of Christians ethics
  2. Explore the basics of Christian’s ethics

 

  1. Christian ethics. The word ethics comes from a Greek term ‘Ethikos’ which means custom, or conduct. Ethics are moral principles, which influence a person’s behaviour. Ethics are defined as the systematic study of human actions and behaviour. We use ethics to judge, determine and assess the right and wrong of human behaviour. Morals refer to human character, which is the inclination to behave in one way or another. Ethics is the study of morals and they determine and influence personal and societal behaviour. Christian ethics is the study of human conduct or behaviour from a Christian point of view.

 

  1. Basis of Christian ethics. Sources of Christian’s ethics:
  • The bible, teachings of Jesus Christ
  • Human reason and experience
  • Natural law
  • The Christian community – the church
  • Situation ethics
  • Authoritative Christian literature – based on the bible
  • Gods revelation – through prophets

Human reason. These are internal thoughts that guide us when we are making decisions and taking actions. We use our minds and thoughts when confronted by situations. They also rely on internal thoughts in their life experiences.

Internal guiding thoughts have many parts. One is our Conscience. This is our inner self that tells us and lets us know what is right and wrong. There are four types of consciences; doubtful conscience, sensitive conscience, certain conscience and perplexed conscience.

For a Christian, rights and wrongs are in the Bible. God gave the Law of Moses to Israelites. Jesus came and explained the Old Testament and taught new scriptures in the New Testament. These teachings, which we have covered from Form one to three, explain very clearly what is right and wrong. When doubtful of the morality of an action, Christian consults the Bible to know if a decision is right or wrong.

Human Experiences: – these are internal and external guides

When confronted by situations, Christians use their minds i.e. human reason and their life experiences in making decisions.

They rely on internal guides, (Human reason) and experience (external guides)

Internal guides

Conscience: – Mind, aspect of knowing right or wrong. When right, there’s’ approval when wrong it registers guilt.

When doubtful of the morality of an action we should not do it if conscience is perplexed then make us decision. A decision should be based on a certain conscience.

Types of conscience

  • Doubtful conscience
  • Sensitive conscience
  • Certain conscience
  • Perplexed conscience

One can also make decisions based on knowledge and free will

To make a decision one should have

  • Facts about the act, its aims, circumstances.
  • One should be free to perform

A decision ought to be thoughtful

Intuition: – inner feeling, insight

It’s an internal moral sense to do good or avoid evil. Intuition is important in situations that require quick and immediate that requires quick and immediate action.

 Feelings

Feelings are subjective e.g. it feels good to do so this, hence will do…” it can be dangerous to make decisions purely based on feelings especially in marriage friendship etc. Eternal guides

Experience

Guides here include authoritative persons such as parents, teachers, police, civil leaders philosophers, and religious leaders.

Rules from secular, religions, and African traditional culture are part of external guides.

The bible

The bible, quoted in the text but now out of text guides Christian behaviour. God communicates to his people through the Bible. The Bible offers answers to questions in relation to the life of a Christian.

Today, there are ethical issues not found in the bible e.g. HIV / AIDS, sexual and reproductive health rights, contraceptives, abortion, globalization, cloning, environmental degradation, genetically modified foods, terrorism, international trade etc. this gives reason and other sources  factors are basis of Christian ethics in addition to the bible.

 

Moral principles in the bible

  • They are mostly found in the teachings of Jesus and the Ten Commandments, sermon on the mountain
  • Christians are also encouraged to have Faith
  • The virtues encouraged include generosity, love, kindness, faithfulness, patience, humility, peace, mercy, loyalty etc.

 

Christian community – church

Church leadership can make decisions, which touch on their followers. They guide people on ethical issues e.g. politics, land, justice, abortion, contraception etc.

Church organizations give rules on that conduct of their members.

 

Natural law

  • The awareness that one has to choose good and avoid evil
  • If one studies human nature and reflects upon it he/she will discover natural laws of human behavior
  • Natural law, natural rights such as right to education, life own property many etc. are incorporated into the constitution of any nation.
  • The constitution then guides the behaviour of list citizens; Christians being citizens of a country are guided in their behaviour by the constitution.

 

Situation ethics

One should reason out the rightness or wrongness of an act. The rightness or wrongness of an act depends on its uniqueness, the circumstances

Christians are warned against making decisions based on circumstances or the situation e.g. a pregnant student seeking abortion as the option so as to continue with education.

 

Gods revelation

God reveals himself to people through prophets, natural events, the law, dreams and visions. Through such ways God guides Christian on how they should approach certain issues. God’s revelation does not contradict with the bible.

 

Revision questions

  1. What is the meaning of Christian ethics?
  2. What is the basis or source or foundation of Christian ethics?
  3. List the basic life skills that one needs to be able to lead a better life
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CHRISTIAN RELIGIOUS EDUCATION FORM 4 NOTES

TOPIC 1 : INTRODUCTION TO CHRISTIAN ETHICS – Click to view

TOPIC 2 : CHRISTIAN APPROACHES TO HUMAN SEXUALITY, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY – Click to view

TOPIC 3 : CHRISTIAN APPROACHES TO WORK – Click to view

TOPIC 4 : CHRISTIANS APPROACHES TO LEISURE – Click to view

TOPIC 5 : CHRISTIANS APPROACHES TO WEALTH MONEY AND POVERTY – Click to view

TOPIC 6 : APPROACHES TO LAW, ORDER AND JUSTICE – Click to view

TOPIC 7 : CHRISTIAN APPROACHES TO SELECTED ISSUES RELATED TO MODERN SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENT – Click to view