This is my Deep Discussion for this week! The question I’m asking is, Can we have Objective Morality without the need of God?
Please post your answers in the comment section of the post! Please be nice! 🙂
Dean is a Minister in the Anglican Church. Currently he is Curate in the parishes of Bedwas, Machen, Michaelston-y-Fedw and Rudry in South Wales. He was born and bred in Wales, is married to Megan, and has two dogs called Taliesin and Melyn, and two cats named Sinsir and Hâf. He graduated from Cardiff University with a BA Hons. in Theology & Religious Studies, and has studied for an MA in Theology, Ministry & Mission at Trinity College Bristol. He also holds a Cert.RSCM from the Royal School of Church Music. He loves playing music, walking, reading, blogging and horse riding as well as going to the cinema and theatre.
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The problem I have is that I don’t think morality comes from the Bible. Morality in the Bible is a representation of the moralities of society at that time. In order to find what we would term good examples of morality today in the Bible you have to ‘cherry pick’, for want of a better term.
The Bible certainly advocates discrimination against women, in a time when women were seen to be inferior. To me, this is a good example of how the Bible is just a representation of morals of that society.
(Deuteronomy 22:28-29): If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are both discovered, he shall pay the girl’s father fifty shekels of silver. He must marry the girl, for he has violated her.
(Deuteronomy 22:20-21): If … no proof of the girl’s virginity can be found, she shall be brought to the door of her father’s house and there the men of the town shall stone her to death.
Also condoned in the Bible is slavery (slaves are viewed as property rather than people) – it is also seen as acceptable for slaves to be beaten, polygamy, infanticide, cruelty to children, death if you work on the Sabbath.
(Deuteronomy 13:10): If your very own brother, or your son or daughter, or the wife you love, or your closest friend secretly entices you, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” …, do not yield to him or listen to him. Show him no pity. Do not spare him or shield him. You must certainly put him to death. Your hand must be the first in putting him to death, then the hands of all the people. Stone him to death, because he tried to turn you away from the Lord your God…
I don’t think I want a morality based on Biblical morals.
However, the point I’m trying to make is that there must be come independent source of criteria for determining what is right and wrong because there are examples of very bad, but also good morality, in the Bible. And that independent source is modern society.
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