Misc. Philosophical: (A) Objective Morality (B) A Craig Quote (C) A Boettner Quote


[B][COLOR="#B22222"]Objective Morality.[/COLOR] [/B]
What Do I Mean By “Objective Morality”?
I believe strongly in the reality of an Objectivity Morality, but I ground that objective morality upon the existence of God and not upon man. If there is no God, there is no objective morality.

“Morality must come from an Authority greater than those who are responsible for acting in a moral manner. Man cannot be the author of morality and still claim that other men should or must accept or adhere to this morality because if man is the source and the Highest Authority then no man’s opinion is more or less legitimate than any other.”__RET


If there is a God (and there is) then morality can be objective. That means that morality would exist in the universe even if mankind did not exist and had never existed. This is what I mean when I speak of objective morality. It is a morality that exists apart from and outside the brains of human beings.

William Lane Craig gives a good example of what Objective Morality is. If the Nazis had won WW II and had converted the entire world to Nazism to the extent that every last human being on the entire Earth agreed that the killing of those 6,000,000 Jews was the right moral course of action under the circumstances, the Holocaust would still have been a huge moral evil. Why? Because morality (right and wrong, good and evil, moral and immoral) originated in the nature of God, not in the brains and opinions of human beings.

If there is no God, there cannot be any Objective Morality. What kind can there be? Answer: A subjective morality based upon the mere opinions of mere men. Here see RET’s quote again regarding the mere opinions of men.

Here is a restatement of the above with additional examples:

Re: Objective Moral Values.

When I use the word “objective” as applied to moral truths I mean that a thing is moral or immoral whether any human being believes it to be moral or immoral. The emphasis of the word “objective” means the morality or immorality of the thing is 100% independent of what any human thinks or believes about the issue. An example is Stalin’s State mega-murders in order to achieve his vision of what the U.S.S.R. ought to have been.

If the Communists had won the Cold War and converted the entire world to Communism with the results that every last human being on Earth was now living in perfect peace and harmony with his fellow man and every person on Earth was happy and contented and living in affluence with zero problems, and moreover every last human being on Earth fully agreed that the murders committed by Stalin to achieve realized world Communism were NOT immoral under the circumstances, but were totally justified morally, so that it came to pass that it was universally believed by all human beings that Stalin did NOT commit immoral acts when he murdered people in order to create universal Communist bliss, I would still hold the position that all of humanity was totally wrong because morality is objective and therefore independent of what human beings believe to be true regarding any moral question.

Murder is immoral regardless of what humanity believes about it, and thats also true for fornication, adultry, and stealing.

Objective morality, by definition, is independent of what humans think or perceive about it. Subjective morality, by definition, is based upon what humans think or perceive and is therefore not Objective morality. If we accept human subjective morality as the source of morality then we’re back with RET’s statement:

“Morality must come from an Authority greater than those who are responsible for acting in a moral manner. Man cannot be the author of morality and still claim that other men should or must accept or adhere to this morality because if man is the source and the Highest Authority then no man’s opinion is more or less legitimate than any other.”__RET

When we boil this pot long enough it comes down to this: If God is not the Source of morality then there is no such thing as Objective Morality independent of what humans believe or disbelieve. This means all morality or immorality is subjective and based upon what men believe or disbelieve and we’re right back to RET’s statement again with a moral code based upon nothing but the shifting opinions of men in endless intellectual and moral contradictions with one man’s moral opinions being no more legitimate than another man’s moral opinions.

Note to the atheist: On the atheist’s view of man as the source of morality, its nothing more than your mere personal opinion that Stalin was immoral and wrong when he murdered millions of human beings in order to acheive his vision of how the U.S.S.R. ought to have been politically structured.

Jack Note to self: See post 280 and thread here:

[B] [COLOR="#B22222"]On Christian Apologetics.[/COLOR] [/B]
A few excerpts from Craig’s text in chapter one of Reasonable Faith:

"…the inner testimony of the Holy Spirit is even greater…although arguments and evidence may be used to support the believer’s faith, they are never properly the basis for that faith. For the believer, God is not the conclusion of a syllogism; he is the living God … dwelling within us. How then does the believer know that Christianity is true? He knows because of the self-authenticating witness of God’s Spirit who lives within him…"pg.46

“…the magisterial use of reason occurs when reason stands over and above the gospel like a magistrate and judges it on the basis of arguments and evidence. The ministerial use of logic and reason occurs when reason submits to and serves the gospel. In light of the Spirit’s witness, only the ministerial use of reason is legitimate. Philosophy is rightly the handmaid of theology … A person who knows that Christianity is true on the basis of the witness of the Spirit may also have a sound apologetic which reinforces or confirms for him the Spirit’s witness, but it does not serve as the basis of his belief…” pgs. 47-48

“…Therefore the role of rational argumentation in knowing Christianity to be true is the role of a servant. A person knows Christianity is true because the Holy Spirit tells him it is true, and while argument and evidence can be used to support this conclusion, they cannot legitimately overrule it…” pg.51

“…In doing evangelism we must never let apologetics distract us from our primary aim of communicating the gospel. I’d say that with most people there’s no need to use apologetics at all…” pg.57

[B] [COLOR="#B22222"]On Calvinism’s Great And Magnificient Doctrine Of Unconditional Election:[/COLOR] [/B]
Here are excerpts from men who absolutely hold the doctrine of Biblical Infallibility and have published strong defenses of that doctrine:

“…Our position…has been very ably stated by Dr. W.G.T. Shedd in the following words: 'Let it be noticed that the question, how many are elected and how many are reprobated, has nothing to do with the question whether God may either elect or reprobate sinners. If it is intrinsically right for Him either to elect or not to elect, either to save or not save free moral agents, who by their own fault have plunged themselves into sin and ruin, numbers are of no account in establishing the rightness. And if it is intrinscially wrong, numbers are of no account in establishing wrongness. Neither is there any necessity that the number of the elect should be small, and that of the non-elect great, or the converse. The election and the non-election, and also the numbers of the elect and the non-elect, are all alike a matter of Sovereignity…At the same time it relieves the solemnity and awfulness which overhangs the decree of reprobation, to remember that the Scriptures teach that the number of the elect is much greater than that of the non-elect. The kingdom of the Redeemer in this fallen world is always described (in Scripture) as far greater and grander than that of Satan. The operation of grace on Earth is uniformly represented as mighter than sin. ‘Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.’ And the final number of the redeemed is said to be a ‘number which no man can number’, but that of the lost is not so magnified and emphasized…The doctrine of Election taken in itself tells us nothing about what the ultimate ratio shall be. The only limit set is that not all shall be saved…So far as the principles of sovereignity and personal election are concerned there is no reason why a Calvinist might not hold that all men will finally be saved; and some Calvinists have actually held this view, ‘Calvinism’, wrote W.P.Patterson, of the University of Edinburgh, ‘is the only system which contains principles–in its doctrines of election and irresistible grace–that could make credible a theory of universal salvation.’…and Dr. S. G. Craig, Editor of Christianity Today, and one of the outstanding men in the Presbyterian Church…says, 'No doubt many Calvinists, like many non-Calvinists, have, in obedience to the supposed teaching of Scripture, held that few will be saved, but there is no good reason why Calvinists may not believe that the saved will ultimately embrace the greater portion of the human race. At any rate, our leading theologians–Charles Hodge, Robert L. Dabney, W.G.T.Shedd, and Benjamin Warfield–have so held…as stated by Patterson, Calvinism, with its emphasis on the intimate personal relationship between God and each individual soul, is the only system which would offer a LOGICAL basis for universalism, if that view were not contradicted by the Scriptures…”
__Dr. L. Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination, pgs.130-132