HOW & WHY TO BECOME A CHRISTIAN

Problems With The Moral Argument For The Existence of God

As a relatively new atheist, I have been searching for a logically relevant and most of all correct answer to the question provided under the heading of atheist on your website involving the logical contradiction of an All-good yet All-powerful God.
  • We receive emails from time to time that I’d like to take the opportunity to answer. We had a visitor post the following concern regarding the Moral argument for the existence of God. The words in italic are given in “quotes” in the original email. Here is the basic email question in its entirety:
As a relatively new atheist, I have been searching for a logically relevant and most of all correct answer to the question provided under the heading of atheist on your website involving the logical contradiction of an All-good yet All-powerful God. Your answer regarding the greater good of allowing evil to exist is extremely common, but ultimately carries no merit. The whole point of a supreme deity being All Good and All Powerful means, to put it succinctly, that evil, pain, sadness, disappointment, disease, emnity, hatred, etc. should not even exist in the first place, nor have ever been allowed to exist. Also, the greater good argument kind of makes God a little bit like a kid with an ant farm and a magnifying glass, don’t you think? Burning some so that others may profit from its remains...The time response is original, but also ultimately without merit. If God uses evil as you say, just so he can destroy it, it still makes him much less than All Good The waffling arguments you have presented require a bit more thought. The existence of suffering is considered by many of the intelligent to be a trump card. It proves, fairly conclusively, that God (if he exists) is either Good or Powerful, but not both. I have yet to see a logically relevant response, but would be most eager to.


I responded to this question but have also added some additional comments thereafter. My original response is as follows:

On the whole, the idea behind a created being defined for a Creator being (in your words, 'if there is one') is itself flawed in approach, which is why I put the line in there regarding the confusion of "personal happiness" with "good" and "good" with "higher good". If you are familiar with the Moral Argument for the existence of God, then you will see what direction I am coming from on this.

Basically, for every moral 'good', one can search and find a moral 'better' continually on and on until we find the moral "best" which, as the moral argument stipulates is the 'fountainhead' of good, in this case defined as the source of all good, namely the existence of God. Now that is a very shoddy, poor 2 line representation of a voluminous argument butthat is the direction I am coming from. This, in my opinion, would then explain my "greater good" statement that you likened to a child with a magnifying glass (I loved that inference by the way).

Additionally, I would add, that in order for one to recognize a “moral deficiency” would require a source of knowledge of “right and wrong” which could not possibly come from an organism that is nothing more than a hyper-advanced animal from which an understanding of “right and wrong” could not possibly emanate. You see, one can’t borrow from the theist moral code in order to condemn the idea of theism. There has to be an origination of such a moral code from a moral source. This source, I argue, is the Judaeo-Christian God.

The true “problem of evil” as this question is truly addressing is most commonly an “emotional” problem and not one of logic as it is quite logically acceptable that an all good God could co-exist with evil in a given situation. As for the “kid with a magnifying glass” inference, this completely removes the widely accepted theist concept of the free will of man. God has put his moral code within every human being and has given this “animal” a choice to choose what is good, correct, and right. A choice, I might add, that is not given to the apes, monkeys, or orangutans from which we supposedly “evolved”. If this created being, man, chooses evil, it does not negate either the attribute of all good or the attribute of all-powerful from the God that created man but in our case, this God has chosen to solve this “problem of evil” in the person of His Son Jesus Christ that by him we can have new life and the resolution of evil is being solved, one person, one day, one generation at a time..

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