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Atheists: Is Murder Acceptable With You?


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#121 jonas5877

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:47 AM

Have you heard of the term inductive reasoning? That's what the argument is all about, it's an inductive argument based how people act and how they ought to act. And the argument shows that morality seems to be objective rather than subjective. An inductive argument is refuted by showing that either premise is false or that the argument is not logically coherent. Instead of just stating your beliefs you could try to falsify either premise. If not it seems that the argument holds. So my question to you seem to be unanswered. Why is this not a very good argument for that moral is objective?

Because people acting a certain way based on their beliefs does not make those beliefs true. If you thought that it did then people dying for their beliefs would logically make their beliefs true. You really don't think that the beliefs of the 9/11 hijackers are true, do you?

As Gilbo said, perhaps God wanted to end the sinful way of the Canaanite once and for all. Perhaps it was meant to send a strong messages to other nations as well. But you yourself agreed that God had the right to determine how long any person get to live, why could he not decide the life length of these children? And according to God life does not end with the death of your physical body, so how do you know what happened to these children after death?

I don't know what happened and neither do you. I can use inductive reasoning, though. Since God didn't think those babies could be taught by the Hebrews to obey the law and, thus, be redeemed, then they must have already been too far gone to be saved. Therefore, they must be destined for Hell.

Actually that is incorrect. God is immutable which means that God do not change His mind on what is and what is not wrong. For example torturing small children for pleasure has always been wrong, so that is one objective moral value that may be derived from the Bible.

What Bible verses support that contention? Do you think the Hebrew soldiers hated doing what God told them to do or did they take pleasure in following their God's commands? Better yet, would they be wrong to hate doing what God told them to do? So if God told you to torture babies, should you take pleasure in doing it or not?
The objective morality you have is that you must do what God tells you or you are being immoral. You do have a choice (free will and all that).

God did use the children of Israel (as the Bible calls them) to bring Gods judgement on nations, but that is in context of the old covenant at a particular time in history. Remember that the children of Israel was led out of Egypt by a pillar of cloud/fire, so Gods presence was much more concrete at that time. And according to the new covenant God does not count peoples sin (regardless of their nationality or worldview) against them any more. So from a christian perspective anyone telling you that God have asked him/her to do something that is morally wrong is just lying. You can derive objective moral values from the Bible and you can know if peoples actions are condoned by God or not, but to do so you must have some basic understanding of what the Bible actually says. So I guess you aren't winning after all :)/>/>

Where in the Bible does it say that it is wrong to kill another human being? Since people's sin are not counted against them, should they be punished on Earth for sins they commit?

#122 gilbo12345

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:22 AM

Insisting that atheists have no reason to not oppose murder, yes, is implying that atheists are more murderous. And it's unbelievably insulting.


Did I ever state that? I never did, so quit putting words in peoples mouths and then try and bad mouth them from the words you put there.

#123 aelyn

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:28 AM

Would you like me to scour the internet for the quote from Dawkins book stating that we are merely 'dancing to the tune of our genes'... Because that statement fits entirely with what I have said...

I don't doubt that Dawkins is eminently quote-mineable, that's why I suggested you read his books instead. Or even just quote a paragraph (not three sentences) where he argues that genes control our every choice. Or don't, because it's our point of views on free will that interest me here not Dawkins'.

Not sure how your analogy has any relevance since you're merely demonstrating a person in a situation of a tough choice.

That wasn't an analogy, it's one classic situation where depending on the definition one might have free will or not and I'm trying to figure out what free will means for you. The question of coercion is relevant when talking about free will in legal contexts; I agree it's not the most interesting context for this conversation but I needed to rule it out to make sure we're talking about the same thing.

However a choice is still given, the gunman hasn't automatically taken the money, you are given a choice. You are free to choose the outcome which the situation presents you... Claiming freewill doesn't mean we are immune to circumstance, sometimes the outcomes of a particular choice are thrust on us, however still having a choice means we get to choose which of those outcomes occur. Now the "power of choice" in that it means we can choose to do unique things that have no anticedent conditions within ourselves. For example I can choose to go make a movie, even though I have never done such a thing, nor even considered it.

Surely if you chose to make a movie you'd have considered it at least for the few seconds before you made the choice, no ? And do you believe subconscious processes have any role in making choices ?

Essentially each minute of each day we have the capacity to re-invent ourselves based on our choices, is this not powerful? People often say that this or that person has not yet found himself. But the self is not something one finds, it is something one creates. ~Thomas Szasz, "Personal Conduct," The Second Sin, 1973


We can modify our personalities and tastes through our choices, but isn't the choice to modify your personality or tastes itself the result of the personality and tastes you had before the change ?

From your response it looks to me as if you're saying free will means that choices are uncaused, am I understanding you correctly ?

#124 gilbo12345

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:39 AM

1. I don't recall saying it didn't apply to my beliefs. So, how do we determine what beliefs are closer to being true?

2. You don't "KNOW" any such thing. If you believed that your God told you to torture babies then you would have to say it was not immoral and would have to do it. You wouldn't have any choice but to obey if you wanted to avoid sinning.

3. You believe that killing babies can be justified by God so killing babies can be good. You must believe that because the Bible says God ordered those killings.

4. I'm not sure why God couldn't have the Hebrews adopt those babies and teach them to obey the Law? Maybe He just wasn't powerfull enough then or maybe those babies were too mired in their parents' sin that they couldn't be prevented from eventually being condemned. Were they condemned already or did they get spared that by being killed while they were still babies?

5. I never said my morality was objective.

6. So, you change subjective to mean they only apply to us and then say I am redefining "subjective". Strange. So we have an "objective" morality that can be changed by God and still be objective. Torturing and killing babies is not ok... today. However, it might be ok tomorrow if someone gets a devine revelation. I see how that works now. If you don't mind though, I'll keep my morality rather than start killing babies based on some religious leader's say so.


1. Just making sure you know "the score" in that your own beliefs are not excempt from this, ergo I'm not sure why you mentioned it since its a moot point in that regard.

2. Has God ever issued me such a command? Stop playing hypotheticals.

3. I never stated that killing babies is a good thing. The reasoning I gave was that it was perhaps a necessary thing to avoid an ultimately worse fate, I suggest you re-read what I said. I guess since you do not believe in heaven and such you would never understand.

4. Perhaps you can ask when you see him.

5. Really?.... So what do you think? If morality really is subjective then why even worry about the wrongdoings in the Bible since a subjective morality means "each is entitled to his own".

6. Read the definitons... As I said if morals stemming from God is subjective to GOD that doesn't mean they are subjective towards us, since to be subjective towards us they would need to stem from us, from our human nature etc. That is the definition of subjective.


sub·jec·tive
   /səbˈdʒɛktɪv/ Show Spelled[suhb-jek-tiv] Show IPA

adjective
1.
existing in the mind; belonging to the thinking subject rather than to the object of thought ( opposed to objective).
2.
pertaining to or characteristic of an individual; personal; individual: a subjective evaluation.
3.
placing excessive emphasis on one's own moods, attitudes, opinions, etc.; unduly egocentric.
4.
Philosophy . relating to or of the nature of an object as it is known in the mind as distinct from a thing in itself.
5.
relating to properties or specific conditions of the mind as distinguished from general or universal experience

http://dictionary.re...owse/subjective


Belonging to the thinking subject meaning if the subject is God and therefor morality derived from God is subjective to God then that doesn't mean its subjective to us since it still doesn't "belong" to us... Ergo you're trying to change the definition of subjective to add in extra clauses.

#125 jonas5877

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 01:43 PM

1. Just making sure you know "the score" in that your own beliefs are not excempt from this, ergo I'm not sure why you mentioned it since its a moot point in that regard.

??? I mentioned it because I thought your remark about it implied that I had stated that my beliefs were true because they were my beliefs. So, we believe different things. How do we determin whose beliefs are more true... or is that possible?

2. Has God ever issued me such a command? Stop playing hypotheticals.

He has issued commands to kill babies. What's preventing him from issuing a command to torture them?

3. I never stated that killing babies is a good thing. The reasoning I gave was that it was perhaps a necessary thing to avoid an ultimately worse fate, I suggest you re-read what I said. I guess since you do not believe in heaven and such you would never understand.

I did read what you wrote. You never said killing babies was not a good thing. If God orders it, doesn't that mean it is a good thing? Shouldn't His followers take pleasure in doing His work?

4. Perhaps you can ask when you see him.

Then you accept that the killing of the babies was the best option and must have been a good thing.

5. Really?.... So what do you think? If morality really is subjective then why even worry about the wrongdoings in the Bible since a subjective morality means "each is entitled to his own".

That is not exactly what it means. Each entitled to his own unless it affects the rights of others in our society. If your morality harms me or others then the society we live in can curtail your expression of your morality.

6. Read the definitons... As I said if morals stemming from God is subjective to GOD that doesn't mean they are subjective towards us, since to be subjective towards us they would need to stem from us, from our human nature etc. That is the definition of subjective.

Ok, I accept your declaration that morality can be subjective to God but must be objective to us. Unfortunately it means that you cannot know from one day to the next if any action is moral or immoral because the morality depends on what God has determined for that situation. As for me, I will continue to act as if killing babies is not a good or moral thing to do.

#126 Salsa

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 04:22 PM

Then you accept that the killing of the babies was the best option and must have been a good thing.


Are you talking about killing babies in general?

If you had the opportunity and knew what was in store, would you have killed Hitler as a baby?

#127 gilbo12345

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:56 PM

1. He has issued commands to kill babies. What's preventing him from issuing a command to torture them?

2. I did read what you wrote. You never said killing babies was not a good thing.

3. If God orders it, doesn't that mean it is a good thing?

4. Shouldn't His followers take pleasure in doing His work?

5. Then you accept that the killing of the babies was the best option and must have been a good thing.

6. That is not exactly what it means. Each entitled to his own unless it affects the rights of others in our society. If your morality harms me or others then the society we live in can curtail your expression of your morality.

7. Ok, I accept your declaration that morality can be subjective to God but must be objective to us.

8. Unfortunately it means that you cannot know from one day to the next if any action is moral or immoral because the morality depends on what God has determined for that situation.

9. As for me, I will continue to act as if killing babies is not a good or moral thing to do.


1. Firstly you are now wandering into the hypothetical, (ie making stuff up), since regarding the text in the Bible no command was given. Secondly

2. Thank you

3. Who ever said that ANYTHING God orders is good? I have been saying that it may have been necessary to avoid a far worse outcome, as Uppsala has demonstrated with a great example.

4. Who said that they should? (Again you are making stuff up to suit your agenda)

5. No since I am stating it as a potentially necessary thing, and in terms of "good" we are discussing moral good and bad which is totally different to the other meaning of "good" which is what you are trying to use here.

6. No its not... As per the definition above subjective morality is ONLY governed by the person in question. Therefore a rapist is only governed by his / her own sense of morality in which he / she would think that rape is a good thing. Therefore there can be no laws no society with out fundamental objective morals to build them on. Essentially all you would get is the chaos of social relativism.


sub·jec·tive
   /səbˈdʒɛktɪv/ Show IPA

adjective
1.
existing in the mind; belonging to the thinking subject rather than to the object of thought ( opposed to objective).
2.
pertaining to or characteristic of an individual; personal; individual: a subjective evaluation.
3.
placing excessive emphasis on one's own moods, attitudes, opinions, etc.; unduly egocentric.
4.
Philosophy . relating to or of the nature of an object as it is known in the mind as distinct from a thing in itself.
5.
relating to properties or specific conditions of the mind as distinguished from general or universal experience

http://dictionary.re...owse/subjective






7. Thanks.

8. How so? Since God has already determined what is good and bad and has related that in the commands in the Bible.

9. Yes, its good that you think that, however what this thread is about is where is your foundation for such beliefs? Since atheism give no tangible reason to believe in such a thing, (in fact evolution would dictate it as necessary in order for things to "evolve")

#128 Tirian

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 04:58 AM

Because people acting a certain way based on their beliefs does not make those beliefs true. If you thought that it did then people dying for their beliefs would logically make their beliefs true. You really don't think that the beliefs of the 9/11 hijackers are true, do you?


That is not what the argument says. It does not say that all moral values held by all people are true, where do you get that from? What it says is that people are ready to die for their moral beleifs and that this should not be expected if moral values where subjective.

It's another matter that some people have gotten the facts wrong or believe in lies, so that their moral values ​​are more or less defective.

I don't know what happened and neither do you. I can use inductive reasoning, though. Since God didn't think those babies could be taught by the Hebrews to obey the law and, thus, be redeemed, then they must have already been too far gone to be saved. Therefore, they must be destined for Hell.


The above text is a poor example of inductive reasoningt. A simple reason for this is that there could be lots of other reasons for God to command the death of the children. One such thing could be that the children of Israel did not have the manpower to nourish and feed all Canaanite babies so it might have resulted in famine and other sorrows. So God may have known that it would be better for all involved that the Canaanite babies came to Him. It's not very biblical to say that small children are destined for Hell, not if you are to believe what Jesus says.

What Bible verses support that contention? Do you think the Hebrew soldiers hated doing what God told them to do or did they take pleasure in following their God's commands? Better yet, would they be wrong to hate doing what God told them to do? So if God told you to torture babies, should you take pleasure in doing it or not? The objective morality you have is that you must do what God tells you or you are being immoral. You do have a choice (free will and all that).


First of all God would never ask anyone at anytime in history to torture babies. And God does not enjoy the killing of anybody, so why would he expect people to enjoy that? So yes I think the Hebrew soldiers did not enjoy being Gods tool for delevering his verdict. Much in the same manner as someone in a legacy system that carries out a death penalty does not need to enjoy that or a soldier in a war does not need to enjoy killing enemy soldiers. It's rather that God would not approve if you started to enjoy killing people.

But why would God (according to the new covenant) order me to do something that is immoral?
Do you have any support in the Bible for Jesus to give such a command?

Where in the Bible does it say that it is wrong to kill another human being? Since people's sin are not counted against them, should they be punished on Earth for sins they commit?


Well the Bible is actually quite descriptive of what kind of killings are right and wrong. Anyone that with malice aforethought kills another person for example is called a murderer (Numbers 35:16-30).

Yes nations have (according to the Bible) been given the right to punish evil even if God is reconciled with people's sin. So a moral sin can be rightfully punished by national law after a trial, but not on the whim of a single person.

#129 usafjay1976

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 05:36 AM

Gilbo12345 said:

9. Yes, its good that you think that, however what this thread is about is where is your foundation for such beliefs? Since atheism give no tangible reason to believe in such a thing, (in fact evolution would dictate it as necessary in order for things to "evolve")


I'd like to steer the thread back in that direction.

If theft, rape, murder, etc. are wrong, why? If humans are just particles thrown together by a random occurence, no greater than a rock, why can't I do whatever I want? Yes there are laws in society that tell us not to do 'bad things', but why did these laws come to be?

#130 jonas5877

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:50 AM

1. Firstly you are now wandering into the hypothetical, (ie making stuff up), since regarding the text in the Bible no command was given. Secondly

There is no recorded instance of God ordering the torture of children. However, the Bible does record the ordering of the killing of children.

2. Thank you 3. Who ever said that ANYTHING God orders is good? I have been saying that it may have been necessary to avoid a far worse outcome, as Uppsala has demonstrated with a great example.

Then you believe that God asks people to do things that would normally be thought of as evil. However, those things are not evil because God ordered them? OR.... Does God sometimes actually request his followers to do evil?

4. Who said that they should? (Again you are making stuff up to suit your agenda)

Then it is ok for God's followers to hate what God asks them to do? What are you saying here? Does God care if you are a willing follower or does He just want followers regardless of their willingness?

5. No since I am stating it as a potentially necessary thing, and in terms of "good" we are discussing moral good and bad which is totally different to the other meaning of "good" which is what you are trying to use here.

Then an action which you would call morally bad if I did it, can be called morally good if God orders it?

6. No its not... As per the definition above subjective morality is ONLY governed by the person in question. Therefore a rapist is only governed by his / her own sense of morality in which he / she would think that rape is a good thing. Therefore there can be no laws no society with out fundamental objective morals to build them on. Essentially all you would get is the chaos of social relativism.

But social relativism is all we have on this world. You cannot provide one example of an objectively good moral act because you cannot know if God wanted that act to be performed. If we cannot know whether an act is objectively a good or bad moral act, then we are forced to use the social morals that men have constructed, whether those men are the majority of society or the preachers of our religion.

7. Thanks. 8. How so? Since God has already determined what is good and bad and has related that in the commands in the Bible.

Really? Example: You just read in the paper that a person in a prayer group killed the wife of the leader of that prayer group. The person confessed and stated that the prayer group leader told him that he must kill the woman. The prayer group leader confirms the statement of the killer. Was the killing of the woman a good or bad moral act? What Bible verses support your conclusion?

Jesus said to his disciples that if they love Him they would obey Him.

9. Yes, its good that you think that, however what this thread is about is where is your foundation for such beliefs? Since atheism give no tangible reason to believe in such a thing, (in fact evolution would dictate it as necessary in order for things to "evolve")

My point was that my morals based on societal norms and my own judgement would prevent me from killing babies, while your morals, being subject to God, might require you to kill babies today...or tomorrow.

#131 jonas5877

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:27 AM

That is not what the argument says. It does not say that all moral values held by all people are true, where do you get that from? What it says is that people are ready to die for their moral beleifs and that this should not be expected if moral values where subjective. It's another matter that some people have gotten the facts wrong or believe in lies, so that their moral values ​​are more or less defective.

That's bunk. All it says is that those people believe that it is important enough to die for.

The above text is a poor example of inductive reasoningt. A simple reason for this is that there could be lots of other reasons for God to command the death of the children. One such thing could be that the children of Israel did not have the manpower to nourish and feed all Canaanite babies so it might have resulted in famine and other sorrows. So God may have known that it would be better for all involved that the Canaanite babies came to Him.

So, the God that fed the one million strong tribe of Israel when they were in the wilderness, could not supply enough food if a few thousand were added to their ranks. [sarcasm] Is He a limited God?[/sarcasm]

It's not very biblical to say that small children are destined for Hell, not if you are to believe what Jesus says.

What did Jesus say about children and their ultimate destination? I remember something about no one getting to heaven except through Jesus and that Jesus is the only way to heaven. Paul even says that all have sinned. Does Paul actually mean all except small children?

First of all God would never ask anyone at anytime in history to torture babies.

So says you. Did God tell you this? I contend that you don't know what God will or will not do or what He would or would not order His followers to do. Someone you care about may be kidnapped and tortured by the kidnapper (I hope this doesn't happen). Would God be in control of that? Yes but He would let it happen anyway, presumably for a good reason, but He still let it happen. In that case God is requiring the torture of someone for a greater good. So, don't presume you know what God will require of you.

And God does not enjoy the killing of anybody, so why would he expect people to enjoy that? So yes I think the Hebrew soldiers did not enjoy being Gods tool for delevering his verdict. Much in the same manner as someone in a legacy system that carries out a death penalty does not need to enjoy that or a soldier in a war does not need to enjoy killing enemy soldiers. It's rather that God would not approve if you started to enjoy killing people.

Not enjoying the killing for its sake but enjoying being obedient to God. Shouldn't God have willing followers? If you hate the things that God orders you to do, then you are unwillingly following Him. I don't think that this God of yours cares if people live or die. Death is just another tool for Him. Assuming that your soul goes on, death has no meaning to God. You might think it is good for you to have your wife continue to live with you but God, who sees beyond what you see, may decide it is better for you that she dies. If she were to die, your beliefs require that you decide it was better for you that she do so, because God knows best.

But why would God (according to the new covenant) order me to do something that is immoral? Do you have any support in the Bible for Jesus to give such a command?

God wouldn't order anything immoral because if He orders it, it is automatically moral. How you see it is unimportant.

Jesus killed a herd of pigs that didn't belong to Him. Jesus killed a fig tree that didn't belong to him because it had no fruit in season when fig trees don't have fruit. Were those actions immoral? Nope, because God (assuming Jesus was God incarnate) did them.


Well the Bible is actually quite descriptive of what kind of killings are right and wrong. Anyone that with malice aforethought kills another person for example is called a murderer (Numbers 35:16-30). Yes nations have (according to the Bible) been given the right to punish evil even if God is reconciled with people's sin. So a moral sin can be rightfully punished by national law after a trial, but not on the whim of a single person.

No malice required if you use an iron object or a stone in your hand. Malice is required if you push someone or strike them with your fist so that they die.

What if that single person was told by God to kill another person? Is the killing now not a sin?

#132 jonas5877

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:36 AM

Gilbo12345 said: I'd like to steer the thread back in that direction. If theft, rape, murder, etc. are wrong, why?

Because, most people agree that they don't want to be raped or murdered and, in that consensus of agreement, they decide that it is wrong for everyone in their group to perform those acts.

If humans are just particles thrown together by a random occurence, no greater than a rock, why can't I do whatever I want? Yes there are laws in society that tell us not to do 'bad things', but why did these laws come to be?

[evilutionist hat on]Those laws came to be because cooperation and empathy for others is a trait for social creatures that helps the group survive and have children. People that don't cooperate or have no empathy for others, don't get as many opportunities to have children.[evilutionist hat off]
You can't do whatever you want because eventually people will stop you.
You act a certain way because you know people will stop you or embarass you. Picking your nose or loudly passing gas in public is not a sin but you don't do it because social pressure causes you to act as if those things were wrong. Disobeying the law is a sin but if everyone is speeding on the turnpike you would probably speed too because social pressure is not as disapproving of the speeders as it is of the nose-pickers and flatulent people.

#133 Tirian

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 01:37 AM

That's bunk. All it says is that those people believe that it is important enough to die for.


I don't know any person who would die for their belief in best color (example of a subjective preference). But I just pointed out that the argument for objective moral values that I have defended does not say anything about if a certain individuals moral beliefs are true or not, which you claimed. So do we agree that you where wrong about that?

So, the God that fed the one million strong tribe of Israel when they were in the wilderness, could not supply enough food if a few thousand were added to their ranks. [sarcasm] Is He a limited God?[/sarcasm]


Well it is actually a good point, besides the intended sarcasm. Of course God could have feed them. But my point was not that this have to be the reason that God choose to order the death of the Canaanite children it's just to show that there are other alternatives to your proposed reason. Your premise is highly speculative and can be easily questioned. Therefore your reasoning was a bad example of inductive reasoning. An inductive argument should have premises that at least seems plausible true.

What did Jesus say about children and their ultimate destination? I remember something about no one getting to heaven except through Jesus and that Jesus is the only way to heaven. Paul even says that all have sinned. Does Paul actually mean all except small children?


If you had been active in a christian church you should know this, it's something I think all Sunday schools teach.

Matthew 19:14 - Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

So says you. Did God tell you this? I contend that you don't know what God will or will not do or what He would or would not order His followers to do. Someone you care about may be kidnapped and tortured by the kidnapper (I hope this doesn't happen). Would God be in control of that? Yes but He would let it happen anyway, presumably for a good reason, but He still let it happen. In that case God is requiring the torture of someone for a greater good. So, don't presume you know what God will require of you.


Of course I don't know what God will require of me. But if I hear a voice telling me to do something that is in conflict with what the Bible teaches, then it is not the voice of God I'm hearing. That's why I may conclude (without knowing exactly what God wants) that God asking me to torture babies is out of character for God and therefore not something that God would ask anyone to do. We may actually have knowledge of some of Gods characteristics.

Everything that happens on earth is not happening in accordance to Gods will, for example evil things. The reason God allows evil is called the problem of evil and let's not start to discuss that in this thread.

Not enjoying the killing for its sake but enjoying being obedient to God. Shouldn't God have willing followers? If you hate the things that God orders you to do, then you are unwillingly following Him. I don't think that this God of yours cares if people live or die. Death is just another tool for Him. Assuming that your soul goes on, death has no meaning to God. You might think it is good for you to have your wife continue to live with you but God, who sees beyond what you see, may decide it is better for you that she dies. If she were to die, your beliefs require that you decide it was better for you that she do so, because God knows best.


First let's get Gods view on this. In Ezekiel 18:32 God declares : For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!

God did not intended humans to die, God intention was that they should live. So it is OK to rejoice in the defeat of evil and to willingly obey God. But each individual (evil or not) that dies is always something sad. If it was an evil man it might be good that his evil ways has ended, but God still don't find pleasure in the death of the person. So why would I?

It's really the same things about soldiers in a war. They might rejoice that they have successfully fought and defended freedom. But they don't have to find pleasure in killing people. If you start to do that as a soldier I think you have started to walk down a treacherous road.

And again everything in the world does not happen according to Gods will even if God allows it to happen, i.e. the problem of evil.

God wouldn't order anything immoral because if He orders it, it is automatically moral. How you see it is unimportant. Jesus killed a herd of pigs that didn't belong to Him. Jesus killed a fig tree that didn't belong to him because it had no fruit in season when fig trees don't have fruit. Were those actions immoral? Nope, because God (assuming Jesus was God incarnate) did them. No malice required if you use an iron object or a stone in your hand. Malice is required if you push someone or strike them with your fist so that they die. What if that single person was told by God to kill another person? Is the killing now not a sin?


If God is the reason why the pigs and the fig tree exists in the first place, why can't he decide on how long their lifespan should be?

The short answer to your killing question is, if it is murder then it is sin otherwise it is not.

#134 jonas5877

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 06:51 AM

I don't know any person who would die for their belief in best color (example of a subjective preference). But I just pointed out that the argument for objective moral values that I have defended does not say anything about if a certain individuals moral beliefs are true or not, which you claimed. So do we agree that you where wrong about that?

They won't die for their belief of what is the best color because it is not that important to them. They won't try to force others to agree that red is the best color because which color is best is not that important. They will try to write laws that prevent two men from getting a civil marriage certificate because their belief is very strong that those men's lifestyle is wrong. That doesn't mean there is some objective or absolute value system for morality. It only means that they feel very strongly about that particular action.

Well it is actually a good point, besides the intended sarcasm. Of course God could have feed them. But my point was not that this have to be the reason that God choose to order the death of the Canaanite children it's just to show that there are other alternatives to your proposed reason. Your premise is highly speculative and can be easily questioned. Therefore your reasoning was a bad example of inductive reasoning. An inductive argument should have premises that at least seems plausible true.

Basically, God ordered the death of those small children for some good reason which we don't have any way of knowing. If we did not have a record of God ordering those children's deaths at the hands of the Israelite army we would have thought it to be a morally bad act. However, since we have a record saying that God ordered it, it is now a morally good act. Ok.

If you had been active in a christian church you should know this, it's something I think all Sunday schools teach. Matthew 19:14 - Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

How does that statement mean that children who die before they accept Jesus as their savior will enter heaven?

Of course I don't know what God will require of me. But if I hear a voice telling me to do something that is in conflict with what the Bible teaches, then it is not the voice of God I'm hearing. That's why I may conclude (without knowing exactly what God wants) that God asking me to torture babies is out of character for God and therefore not something that God would ask anyone to do. We may actually have knowledge of some of Gods characteristics. Everything that happens on earth is not happening in accordance to Gods will, for example evil things. The reason God allows evil is called the problem of evil and let's not start to discuss that in this thread.

If you heard that voice telling you to kill certain babies or adults would you conclude that it is not the voice of God? Is requesting His followers to kill other human beings out of character for God?

First let's get Gods view on this. In Ezekiel 18:32 God declares : For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live! God did not intended humans to die, God intention was that they should live. So it is OK to rejoice in the defeat of evil and to willingly obey God. But each individual (evil or not) that dies is always something sad. If it was an evil man it might be good that his evil ways has ended, but God still don't find pleasure in the death of the person. So why would I? It's really the same things about soldiers in a war. They might rejoice that they have successfully fought and defended freedom. But they don't have to find pleasure in killing people. If you start to do that as a soldier I think you have started to walk down a treacherous road.

Then you believe it is not sinful to hate something that God requires of you. Does the fact that you may not like what God wants you to do cause the act to be morally bad? I don't think it affects the morality of the act at all. Is the act morally good because God ordered it? If God told you to end someones life or take someones possessions, should you be required to ask forgiveness after doing what he told you to do?
If not, then the act is not a sin.

And again everything in the world does not happen according to Gods will even if God allows it to happen, i.e. the problem of evil.

Then God is not in control even if the reason is that He chooses to not be in control. Kinda like a policeman taking no action while witnessing a woman getting raped. Isn't choosing to do nothing still a moral choice?

If God is the reason why the pigs and the fig tree exists in the first place, why can't he decide on how long their lifespan should be? The short answer to your killing question is, if it is murder then it is sin otherwise it is not.

The point about the pigs and fig tree was that Jesus purposely caused another human being's property to become valueless. In other words, He stole something from someone. Since Jesus led a sinless life then those actions must have been morally good despite the feelings of the owners of the pigs or the fig tree.

We are now back to the problem at hand. Since you cannot know if God ordered a particular act by another person, you cannot determine if that act was morally good or morally bad, only that person can determine the morality of his actions. Therefore, the idea that there are objective or absolute morals is moot for those of us on Earth. We are stuck with subjective morals that must be determined some other way, whether that be by society, parents, religion or a combination of everything taught or experienced.

As for the idea of objective morals, we are left with the only objectively good morals are what God decides is good at any particular moment. The morals are objective but they are not unchanging. Since they change they are not absolute unless you claim that the absolute morality is obeying God.

#135 gilbo12345

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:07 PM

1. Because, most people agree that they don't want to be raped or murdered and, in that consensus of agreement, they decide that it is wrong for everyone in their group to perform those acts.

2. [evilutionist hat on]Those laws came to be because cooperation and empathy for others is a trait for social creatures that helps the group survive and have children. People that don't cooperate or have no empathy for others, don't get as many opportunities to have children.[evilutionist hat off]

3. You can't do whatever you want because eventually people will stop you.

4. You act a certain way because you know people will stop you or embarass you.

5. Picking your nose or loudly passing gas in public is not a sin but you don't do it because social pressure causes you to act as if those things were wrong.

6. Disobeying the law is a sin but if everyone is speeding on the turnpike you would probably speed too because social pressure is not as disapproving of the speeders as it is of the nose-pickers and flatulent people.


1. And? How does that give them the authority to claim such is a morally bad thing? Perhaps consider a world where there were more psycopaths than "normal" people... Then by your anaology (majority vote) then it would probably be "morally good" to rape and murder since that is what the psycopaths would vote on. Which means in your worldview there is no authority / foundation with which to base these moral absolutes we have.

2. Really... So the rapist who can impregnate more females than the solo-relationship male will somehow have less offspring? Yeah that makes total sense.... Posted Image

3. Tell that to the people in power..Under your view they have no obligation or moral duty to be a morally good person.

4. Doesn't stop you from ignoring my points elsewhere... Ergo you defy your own claim here.. lol

5. We are discussing morals here, not what is socially acceptable

6. Human law doesn't equate to sin, (this demonstrates that you don't know what sin actually is)

#136 Tirian

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 01:25 AM

They won't die for their belief of what is the best color because it is not that important to them. They won't try to force others to agree that red is the best color because which color is best is not that important. They will try to write laws that prevent two men from getting a civil marriage certificate because their belief is very strong that those men's lifestyle is wrong. That doesn't mean there is some objective or absolute value system for morality. It only means that they feel very strongly about that particular action.


You just seem to try and sidestep both the argument and my question. The argument is based on how people act and ought to act, not on how they feel about things. And it would be appreciated if you could act like a man and actually admit that you were wrong when you claimed that the argument said that all moral values held by all people are true. It's just childish not to admit when you have gotten something wrong, everybody get things wrong from time to time.

Basically, God ordered the death of those small children for some good reason which we don't have any way of knowing. If we did not have a record of God ordering those children's deaths at the hands of the Israelite army we would have thought it to be a morally bad act. However, since we have a record saying that God ordered it, it is now a morally good act. OK. How does that statement mean that children who die before they accept Jesus as their savior will enter heaven? If you heard that voice telling you to kill certain babies or adults would you conclude that it is not the voice of God? Is requesting His followers to kill other human beings out of character for God?


If I heard that voice I knew it would not come from God, why?

1 - The teaching of Jesus Christ must be wrong and the old covenant would still govern Gods relation to man, so I can't be a Christian.
2 - Even if I where a Jew I would have to be a high leader within Israel to have such a mandate from God, either High Priest or President or something.
3 - Preferably some great prophet would tell me what the LORD wanted to be done so there where no uncertainty.
4 - If we where talking the verdict against a whole nation I also needed control over the Israel army.

So no, God will (according to the Bible at least) never order me to kill babies.

Then you believe it is not sinful to hate something that God requires of you. Does the fact that you may not like what God wants you to do cause the act to be morally bad? I don't think it affects the morality of the act at all. Is the act morally good because God ordered it? If God told you to end someones life or take someones possessions, should you be required to ask forgiveness after doing what he told you to do? If not, then the act is not a sin.


God might ask people to do things they don't understand and that they are not comfortable with, like walking up to the altar and say something that doesn't mean anything to themselves. But if the Christian faith is correct, God will not order his followers to end someones life or take someones possession. What support do you have for that in the New Testament?

Then God is not in control even if the reason is that He chooses to not be in control. Kinda like a policeman taking no action while witnessing a woman getting raped. Isn't choosing to do nothing still a moral choice?


This is the problem of evil you are talking about again. Most philosophers think that Alvin Plantinga has actually solved the logical problem of evil. And the emotional part is surprising that you bring up. Because why on earth should you get upset by a woman getting raped if the rapist just acts on his subjective moral values? Who are you to get upset about the fact that other people have other moral preferences? And why do you get upset? You write as if you think that raping women are objectively wrong!

The point about the pigs and fig tree was that Jesus purposely caused another human being's property to become valueless. In other words, He stole something from someone. Since Jesus led a sinless life then those actions must have been morally good despite the feelings of the owners of the pigs or the fig tree. We are now back to the problem at hand. Since you cannot know if God ordered a particular act by another person, you cannot determine if that act was morally good or morally bad, only that person can determine the morality of his actions. Therefore, the idea that there are objective or absolute morals is moot for those of us on Earth. We are stuck with subjective morals that must be determined some other way, whether that be by society, parents, religion or a combination of everything taught or experienced. As for the idea of objective morals, we are left with the only objectively good morals are what God decides is good at any particular moment. The morals are objective but they are not unchanging. Since they change they are not absolute unless you claim that the absolute morality is obeying God.


How do you mean that God (who may control the length of your life) could steal things. On what authority do you claim that the tree or pigs are yours rather than Gods?

I can use the Bible as an objective ground for moral values. And neither moral values nor what God think is good change over time. It's just that God is not just good, he is also holy and righteous. And God have used Israel to deliver his rightful punishment at times in the past. But since we now live under the new covenant other rules applies, and that is all thanks to what Jesus did on the cross.

Conclusions :

Objective moral values do exist.
In God the theist have an objective ground for morality.

Which is good, because then we can start talking about that some actions are in fact immoral.

#137 jonas5877

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 01:12 PM

You just seem to try and sidestep both the argument and my question. The argument is based on how people act and ought to act, not on how they feel about things. And it would be appreciated if you could act like a man and actually admit that you were wrong when you claimed that the argument said that all moral values held by all people are true. It's just childish not to admit when you have gotten something wrong, everybody get things wrong from time to time.

I agree that all moral values held by all people are not all true. If that is what you took from what I said then I did not communicate it well. What I meant is if people act as if thier personal morals should apply to all people, it only means that those moral values are important to them. It does not mean that there is an unknown objective or absolute moral standard. How can it?

If I heard that voice I knew it would not come from God, why?
1 - The teaching of Jesus Christ must be wrong and the old covenant would still govern Gods relation to man, so I can't be a Christian.
2 - Even if I where a Jew I would have to be a high leader within Israel to have such a mandate from God, either High Priest or President or something.
3 - Preferably some great prophet would tell me what the LORD wanted to be done so there where no uncertainty.
4 - If we where talking the verdict against a whole nation I also needed control over the Israel army.
So no, God will (according to the Bible at least) never order me to kill babies.

Since the Bible states that God will never again ask His followers to kill another human being, you can, of course provide the Bible verses that lead you to this conclusion.
In response:
1. Not sure what you are saying here. Is there some verse that says God will not require certain things of His followers? Is the Golden Rule the guideline you are using? Maybe it is the Love your neighbor proclaimation?
2. Are you saying that God would not talk to an individual unless that individual was a high priest? I thought all Christians were now designated as high priests in their own right. The veil over the holy of holies did get torn in two.
3. ??Pat Robertson?...
4. What about a verdict against one person or one family?

God might ask people to do things they don't understand and that they are not comfortable with, like walking up to the altar and say something that doesn't mean anything to themselves. But if the Christian faith is correct, God will not order his followers to end someones life or take someones possession. What support do you have for that in the New Testament?

Ananias and Saphira.

This is the problem of evil you are talking about again. Most philosophers think that Alvin Plantinga has actually solved the logical problem of evil. And the emotional part is surprising that you bring up. Because why on earth should you get upset by a woman getting raped if the rapist just acts on his subjective moral values? Who are you to get upset about the fact that other people have other moral preferences? And why do you get upset? You write as if you think that raping women are objectively wrong!

This wasn't about being upset if a policeman ignored the woman's rape. It was pointing out that by deciding to relinquish control, God is condoning evil. He has His reasons and, because He is God, His doing nothing about it is not a sin. God cannot sin.

How do you mean that God (who may control the length of your life) could steal things. On what authority do you claim that the tree or pigs are yours rather than Gods?

I don't have any authority to claim anything about the ownership of those pigs or the tree. According to the writings of Paul, Jesus was sinless and became sin for us. According to your reckoning, Jesus had God's authority so He could do what He wanted to those pigs and that tree. Since Jesus had God's authority, He could do anything and it would not be a sin. He could have slaughtered the entire Roman Senate or the Court of Herod, and still not have sinned. Kinda makes the claim that He was sinless into a meaningless statement. Of course Jesus didn't sin, because nothing He could do would be called a sin.

I can use the Bible as an objective ground for moral values. And neither moral values nor what God think is good change over time.

It was good to order His people to kill others before Christ's sacrifice but it is not good to order His people to do it now.

It's just that God is not just good, he is also holy and righteous. And God have used Israel to deliver his rightful punishment at times in the past. But since we now live under the new covenant other rules applies, and that is all thanks to what Jesus did on the cross. Conclusions : Objective moral values do exist. In God the theist have an objective ground for morality. Which is good, because then we can start talking about that some actions are in fact immoral.

Name something that is in fact immoral along with the Bible verses that support your claim.

I'll name one. Wearing clothes made of flax and wool is immoral.
Another....Eating clams is immoral.

Owning slaves...wait...that's not immoral.

#138 jonas5877

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 01:43 PM

1. And? How does that give them the authority to claim such is a morally bad thing? Perhaps consider a world where there were more psycopaths than "normal" people... Then by your anaology (majority vote) then it would probably be "morally good" to rape and murder since that is what the psycopaths would vote on. Which means in your worldview there is no authority / foundation with which to base these moral absolutes we have.

If there were more psychopaths than "normal" people, then the breakdown of society would ensue. It is not good for society to have that kind of anarchy. To answer your question, I have no authority to claim any such thing. The majority of people in society can band together and determine what they will accept and what they will not. Those decisions become laws.
Since God does not see fit to come down and enforce the objective moral values that you claim exist, then I guess that society will have to step in and make their own laws. Waiting until we are dead to punish us for infractions committed against objective moral values that He hasn't provide to us seems rather inefficient. Pretty much guarantees that most people will get punished. That is what He wants anyway.

2. Really... So the rapist who can impregnate more females than the solo-relationship male will somehow have less offspring? Yeah that makes total sense.... Posted Image

How many other women would you let a rapist impregnate after he had raped your wife or daughter? Your feelings about their rape probably mirrors the feelings most other people would have about them or their relatives getting raped. Since in this fantasy society you made up there are no moral values that can be enforced, the rapist would probably be dead very quickly without wasting time with the courts or lawyers. I guess he wouldn't have very many children.

3. Tell that to the people in power..Under your view they have no obligation or moral duty to be a morally good person.

Then you believe that people in power don't get away with things that less powerful people are taken to court for? The only obligation they have is to follow the laws that are in place and then only if those laws can be enforced against them. Even if God is going to punish them after they are dead, that really doesn't help us now.

4. Doesn't stop you from ignoring my points elsewhere... Ergo you defy your own claim here.. lol

Ha ha.

5. We are discussing morals here, not what is socially acceptable

I was pointing out that people act based on societal pressure.

6. Human law doesn't equate to sin, (this demonstrates that you don't know what sin actually is)

Then Paul (Romans 13:1 - 13:6) and Peter (1 Peter 2:13 - 2:17) were wrong? They said that God put the government in place and Christians were subject to that authority. With the exception of laws that require Christians to disobey God, I think Christians are required to follow the written law and pay taxes. Wouldn't that make speeding a sin?

#139 Salsa

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 02:45 PM

Ananias and Saphira.


Nice try.

#140 Tirian

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 02:50 AM

I agree that all moral values held by all people are not all true. If that is what you took from what I said then I did not communicate it well. What I meant is if people act as if thier personal morals should apply to all people, it only means that those moral values are important to them. It does not mean that there is an unknown objective or absolute moral standard. How can it?


I do think we have already discussed that, or to restate the original argument :

1. If ethics is subjective, then we should expect people to recognize that actions which they are inclined to think of as "wrong" are only wrong from their point of view.
2. But invariably, people view wrongs against themselves as actions that are really wrong.
3. Therefore moral values are objective and not subjective.

If the premises seems to be true, then the conclusion seems to be valid.

Since the Bible states that God will never again ask His followers to kill another human being, you can, of course provide the Bible verses that lead you to this conclusion. In response: 1. Not sure what you are saying here. Is there some verse that says God will not require certain things of His followers? Is the Golden Rule the guideline you are using? Maybe it is the Love your neighbor proclaimation? 2. Are you saying that God would not talk to an individual unless that individual was a high priest? I thought all Christians were now designated as high priests in their own right. The veil over the holy of holies did get torn in two. 3. ??Pat Robertson?... 4. What about a verdict against one person or one family?


Lets start with statement 1. In order for us to even suspect that God would order us to be a tool for his judgement, we can't be living in the new covenant. To understand this you do need some basic theological understanding. If Jesus has died for all sins, what in the Bible would make us expect God to use us as tools to judge people for their sins today? It just doesn't compute with the teachings of Christ, does it?

We can take 2 - 4 after we have discussed if one should expect God to order such things as Christian or not.

Ananias and Saphira.


Sure, expect God did not order anybody to kill them. So this passage does nothing to warrant the belief that God would order Christians to sin.

This wasn't about being upset if a policeman ignored the woman's rape. It was pointing out that by deciding to relinquish control, God is condoning evil. He has His reasons and, because He is God, His doing nothing about it is not a sin. God cannot sin.


No God allows moral agents to choose what to do, which is something else. And what you are discussing here is the logical part of the problem of evil, which from a philosophically point of view is already solved. Alvin Plantinga summarizes his defense in this manner (from wikipedia):

A world containing creatures who are significantly free (and freely perform more good than evil actions) is more valuable, all else being equal, than a world containing no free creatures at all. Now God can create free creatures, but He can't cause or determine them to do only what is right. For if He does so, then they aren't significantly free after all; they do not do what is right freely. To create creatures capable of moral good, therefore, He must create creatures capable of moral evil; and He can't give these creatures the freedom to perform evil and at the same time prevent them from doing so. As it turned out, sadly enough, some of the free creatures God created went wrong in the exercise of their freedom; this is the source of moral evil. The fact that free creatures sometimes go wrong, however, counts neither against God's omnipotence nor against His goodness; for He could have forestalled the occurrence of moral evil only by removing the possibility of moral good.

I don't have any authority to claim anything about the ownership of those pigs or the tree. According to the writings of Paul, Jesus was sinless and became sin for us. According to your reckoning, Jesus had God's authority so He could do what He wanted to those pigs and that tree. Since Jesus had God's authority, He could do anything and it would not be a sin. He could have slaughtered the entire Roman Senate or the Court of Herod, and still not have sinned. Kinda makes the claim that He was sinless into a meaningless statement. Of course Jesus didn't sin, because nothing He could do would be called a sin.


OK, I understand. You are claiming that Jesus actually broke the old covenant law. I don't agree, which part of the law did Jesus break? I'm not an expert on Mosaic law, but he did not steal anything. So which law did he break?

It was good to order His people to kill others before Christ's sacrifice but it is not good to order His people to do it now.


Yes God used Israel to deliver his judgement at times in the past. But that was in the time of the old covenant, something that Christians believe is part of history.

Name something that is in fact immoral along with the Bible verses that support your claim. I'll name one. Wearing clothes made of flax and wool is immoral. Another....Eating clams is immoral. Owning slaves...wait...that's not immoral.


We´ll according to Jesus the foundation for moral law is (Matthew 22:36-40):

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.
Love your neighbor as yourself.

According to Christians that is the foundation for all objective moral values.

What are your grounds for moral values?




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