In the last post I shared where I derive my moral system. This time around I will analyze the issues with Christian morality. Christians just can’t wrap their heads around the fact that without a holy book which proclaims moral absolutes, you can still have a moral system. And, in my opinion, a more complete and socially productive one.god said it

First let’s define moral absolutes: Moral absolutes or moral absolutism is an ethical view that particular actions are absolutely right or wrong. Religious moral codes are an example of this as they are derived from divine commands which are, in their view, perfect and unchangeable. “God said it, I believe it, that settles it.”¹ 

Now, if the commands from the Bible were to be used as our exclusive moral compass what would our world look like? Actually, it would look very similar to Iraq and Palestine except slavery would still be common practice. Most Christians will point to the ten commandments but ignore the other six-hundred and three.² For instance, Exodus 21:

21 “Now these are the judgments which you shall set before them: If you buy a Hebrew servant, he shall serve six years; and in the seventh he shall go out free and pay nothing. If he comes in by himself, he shall go out by himself; if he comes in married, then his wife shall go out with him. If his master has given him a wife, and she has borne him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall be her master’s, and he shall go out by himself. But if the servant plainly says, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free,’ then his master shall bring him to the judges. He shall also bring him to the door, or to the doorpost, and his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him forever.
“And if a man sells his daughter to be a female slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. If she does not please her master, who has betrothed her to himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He shall have no right to sell her to a foreign people, since he has dealt deceitfully with her. And if he has betrothed her to his son, he shall deal with her according to the custom of daughters. 10 If he takes another wife, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, and her marriage rights. 11 And if he does not do these three for her, then she shall go out free, without paying money.

Clearly the Bible condones slavery. So, are we immoral as a society to condemn it? No, because as a society we derive our morals through empathy and consequentialism. Because of this we realize that it is not mutually beneficial to own humans as property. Therefore, secular morality is superior to Christian morality.

Another teaching found throughout the Old Testament is the killing of infidels (unbelievers). In fact god seems to be bloodthirsty in the killing of not only the armies of these nations, but also every living thing including women, children and even the livestock. Yet, Christians will condemn Islāmic fundamentalists for doing the same. The Bible and the Qur’an are very similar in what they teach about non-believers. In fact you don’t have to look too far to illustrate the point; just look at Westboro Baptist Church. westboro1The atrocities and hate crimes that this group commits and gets away with under the pretext of religious rights and freedom of speech is sickening. But, they are a product of the Bible’s “moral” teachings. The Bibles does teach that homosexuality is an abomination unto god and that god punishes unrighteous nations. It also teaches its followers to proselytize and proclaim the gospel to everyone and be separate from all those who don’t believe like you do. You cannot claim that you hold the Bible as your infallible source of morality while condemning those who actually derive their morality from it. This is hypocritical. By all means, believe what you want to believe. But, if you are just going to cherry pick the warm and fuzzy stuff and ignore the hateful, vindictive, baby-killing god that your book portrays; why not forget the entire thing?

Conclusion:

Most Christians and followers of other religions cite their holy books as their source of morality. But. instead have developed their own reality through reason, empathy and evaluation of consequences both good and bad. They want to believe that their book is the finite source of morality to prop up their faith but interpret it through the filter of their already developed moral system.

Michael Greenslade – Editor, becomingatheist.org

¹Heritage Singers, 1976

²Rich, Tracey R. “A List of the 613 Mitzvot (Commandments)” Judaism 101.p. 2011, Web. October 30, 2014. http://www.jewfaq.org/613.htm

© 2014 – Michael Greenslade and http://www.becomingatheist.org

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s