Morality and God Essay

1392 Words6 Pages
Morality and God

The belief that morality requires God remains a widely held moral maxim. In particular, it serves as the basic assumption of the Christian fundamentalist's social theory. Fundamentalists claim that all of society's troubles - everything from AIDS to out-of-wedlock pregnancies - are the result of a breakdown in morality and that this breakdown is due to a decline in the belief of God. This paper will look at different examples of how a god could be a bad thing and show that humans can create rules and morals all on their own. It will also touch upon the fact that doing good for the wrong reasons can also be a bad thing for the person.
The belief that morality requires God is not limited to theists, however. Many
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Thou shalt steal everything you desire. Thou shalt torture innocent children in your spare time. ..." The reason that this is possible is that killing, raping, stealing, and torturing were not wrong before God made them so. Since God is free to establish whatever set of moral principles he chooses, he could just as well have chosen this set as any other.
However it is absurd to think that such needless killing, raping, stealing, and torturing could be morally permissible. Moreover, to believe that God could have commanded these things is to destroy whatever grounds one might have for praising or worshiping him. And if in accord with the definition of tyrants, justice consists in that which is pleasing to the most powerful? Besides it seems that every act of willing supposes some reason for the willing and this reason, of course, must precede the act.
Leibniz's position is that, if things are neither right nor wrong independently of God's will, then God cannot choose one thing over another because it is right. Thus, if he does choose one over another, his choice must be arbitrary. But a being whose decisions are arbitrary is not a being worthy of worship.
The fact that Leibniz rejects the Divine Command Theory is significant, for he is one of the most committed theists in the Western intellectual tradition. He argues at great length that there must be an all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-good God and consequently that this must be the
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