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That’s what happens to a society that loses the concept of what’s right and what’s wrong.If America is going to change, the hearts of people have to change one by one.That is why here in Oak Park people are scared to walk the streets. That’s why they have the parents patrolling Riem Park this summer.We have raised a generation without a moral conscience. A virtue is a universally agreed-upon standard of moral and ethical behavior, like honesty, like compassion. If we want to change America, what we have to do is go back to the basics, back to things like character and virtue.This is what really what got my mind moving toward this sermon series.
We lead the industrialized world in murder, rape and violent crime.During the Reagan-Bush years he was the Secretary of Education. After that he resigned from government and went into private consulting practice and began making speeches and writing columns around the country. However, about eight or nine months ago, possibly a year ago, his name burst on the national scene in a big way because of a book—a book that he didn’t write.It’s a book that he basically edited, an anthology of stories, short stories, poems, and sayings put together by him called The Book of Virtues. It’s thick, over 700 pages long, and you wouldn’t think that a hard back book that long would be a best seller. It’s been on the list ever since the day it was released. Basically, it is a book of stories arranged around nine virtues or characteristics of a good or wise or virtuous person.I want you to follow along with me in your Bible because most of the sermons will not be like this one. But most of the sermons in this series will take you all over the book of Proverbs, putting verses together, and you will be lost without your Bible.I imagine that many of you know who William Bennett is.