|The only basis for ethics|
| Everyone knows that a law exists outside of us that determines right and wrong. Everyone includes you and me. It includes all of our friends and family, all of the people we work with, and every stranger that we pass on the street. It includes someone who denies that such a law exists.
Even atheists know it, but they refuse to be consistent. They obey a law that they refuse to acknowledge. With their lips they deny the law, but
with their actions they prove a keen awareness. Everyone has a conscience that points to a law above us. We did not invent the conscience, and so we did not invent the law of right and wrong.
Everyone knows the law. It testifies to the value of life, and it gives us our sense of purpose. It guides us in our decisions every day from the time we get up to the time we go to bed.
We know that we are not the standard. That which holds us accountable must be a higher authority. We also know that the cosmos gives no law of right and wrong, because only a personal being can give a moral law. Therefore we must conclude that God is the basis for ethics. He teaches us right and wrong.
The western world has built three different systems for ethics. We have moral relativism, amoral pragmatism (consequentialism), and moral objectivism.* The first appeals to ourselves, but itís not logical, the second points to the cosmos and is fairly logical, but it doesnít really teach morality, and the third one is really the only kind of ethics.
Trying to be gods, humanists redefine morality as something less than morality. With relativism, it is personal preference. With pragmatism, it is an impersonal tool for gaining pleasure and avoiding pain. To believe in right and wrong, one must acknowledge a personal God.
|* The pragmatist's idea of ethics is known as "consequentialism" (e.g., utilitarianism). Moral objectivism is also known as moral absolutism or moral realism.|