You read articles accusing theists of claiming that Yahuah is the basis of morality and therefore an atheist cannot be moral. Just so we are 100% clear: The author of a specific article makes the classical mistake of conflating moral epistemology (knowledge of moral facts) with moral ontology (existence of moral facts). Let’s notice the difference.
Christopher Hitchens made this mistake all the time. In almost every debate he was in. At some point in the debate he would put forth a question to the audience like only he could, “Name me one moral action that a theist can take that an atheist cannot.” He completely misses the point. The moral argument for Yahuah’s existence isn’t that atheists don’t know how to be moral, but that on atheism as a worldview there is no objective grounding for morality. The moral argument is often put forth like this:
- If Yhwh does not exist there are no objective moral facts.
- There are objective moral facts.
- Yhwh exists.
How does one arrive at the conclusion that atheists can’t be moral? Of course they can! All people – including atheists – are made in the image of Yhwh and through the natural law that is present in all of us, have knowledge of the eternal law which includes objective morality. All people know right from wrong, whether they believe in Yahuah, or not.
The issue the atheist faces isn’t that they don’t know morality, but they can’t ground it objectively on their worldview. On the atheist worldview there can be no objective morality because morality can’t be grounded external to the human mind which was produced by natural selection of random mutations. It may be your preference not to murder, but you can’t say that it is objectively wrong. It may be beneficial for the survival of our species to act morally, but why should anyone value the survival of our species? What if someone doesn’t, can you say objectively that they are wrong? It’d be sad perhaps, but you will have done what you wished. Why not, from that view?
The problem isn’t that the atheist doesn’t know morality- they do. The problem is that the existence of objective moral facts isn’t coherent with an atheistic worldview, yet we all observe these moral facts on a daily basis. There must be something external to the human mind, something transcendent in order for there to be objective moral facts. No such thing exists on the atheistic worldview.
Whether theist, or atheist, none of us can be moral enough through our own power. We know intuitively that there is a moral law and that we break it. We rightfully feel guilty when we do something immoral. Our guilt leaves us looking for salvation. Thankfully, Yahuah provided a way for salvation- at the tree of Messiah Yahusha where he paid the price for all of our immorality and sinfulness.
Atheists can be moral. Theists can be immoral.
It’s simply that the existence of objective moral facts only makes sense on a theistic worldview.
Messiah Yahusha paid the price for all of our immorality.
Again, this is based off of the post “Can an Athiest Be moral?”