What Does Morality Tell Us about God's Existence?
What is right and wrong? How do we determine what is good and what is bad? Generally speaking, all cultures seem to include a common moral law—the so-called Golden Rule, which instructs us to treat others as we would want to be treated. The vast majority of people—even if they have no belief in God—still adhere to some kind of morality, even if only the most foundational principle of protecting life. So the question remains: Where has this sense of morality come from? Explore more here.
Questions for Discussion and Personal Reflection
- When you believe something is right or wrong, to what are you appealing as your authority?
- If there is no moral lawgiver, from where do we get our sense of common morals?
You know, I think you can try to explain morality a lot of different ways. If you're coming from an evolutionary viewpoint, you will explain it as a, a tool of survival of the fittest.
I was having a discussion with a, with a friend, and at the end of the day, he was like, "Look, man, the only thing we need to do is survive," you know. He's like, "That's, that's, that's all that's left for humanity is, is survive," you know. He's like, "Because these fools are crazy, these fools are crazy, there's this, there's this, if this is happening, how could there possibly be a God?" Like just, he was just laying out, like, "At the end of the day, survive." Which says to me, "Okay, you've created a moral. And what you're telling me is, 'It is good to continue humanity.' That's a moral."
In all cultures for all times you look across the, the religious text of the world, and you, you see this common moral law. The golden rule: treat people the way you would want them to treat you.
So then the next question would be, "Okay, survive. At what cost? At the cost of another man's life? Okay, so no, not, not at the cost of another man's life. Okay, so is the, is the moral survive or is it protect life?" You know what I'm saying? So either way, you're going to appeal to something.
When someone wrongs you, even if you don't believe there's a God, you make your case for why that was wrong. Now if someone said to you, "Well, yeah, but that's just a societal norm and I'm, I play by different standards," you're not going to go, "Oh, okay, well then go ahead. You can have my car that you stole." We're not going to do that, so what is this standard, this moral standard that we keep appealing to? Who decides right from wrong? "Well, the majority decides right from wrong." You think that through, and you start to realize as well that if the majority of society determines what's right and wong, there's no such thing as minority rights. If white people in America a hundred years ago— the majority— wanted to enslave black people, well then, that's their prerogative because the majority decides what's right. But if you say well, "No, that's not right. There is such a thing as minority rights," well then, who gives them that right? If there is no over-arching moral law or moral-law giver, the whole thing breaks down. We don't live that way.
That screams of the transcendent is that, that this, this within our heart, we understand that there is something right, and there is something wrong. We may not be able to agree as to where those things come from and how we relate to each other with that, but I believe we get it, something, something— there is such a thing as right.