Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – the moral argument for a god

I’ve found a curious article about the moral argument for a god.   The pastor finds it a weak argument, and I would agree with him.  

The typical argument is as he presents it: 

“(1) If God does not exist, then objective morality does not exist.

(2) Objective morality does exist.

(3) Therefore, God exists.”

He claims it is a “valid argument”, which should mean that the premises are true, and demonstrably so, and thus the conclusion is true.  

The problem is that neither he, or any theist who offers this as an argument, can show that objective morality exists at all.   The term objective can mean a few things and this is what it seems to mean in this context: “of, relating to, or being an object, phenomenon, or condition in the realm of sensible experience independent of individual thought and perceptible by all observers having reality independent of the mind  and/or “expressing or dealing with facts or conditions as perceived without distortion by personal feelings, prejudices, or interpretations”  (merriam-webster).

There is nothing to indicate that there morals that fit either definition. 

So, #1 premise fails since there is nothing to show that any god exists, and #2 fails since there is nothing to show that objective morality exists.  This makes the conclusion fail. 

I’m not aware of any atheists arguing for objective morality.  There could indeed be some, and there could be objective morals.  We simply have no way to know as far as I can determine.  (let me know if you think there is a way). 

The pastor is honest in that he believes that objective morals must exist, because he thinks there is a god, not that since there is a god there must be objective morals.   The problem is that he must assume that the morals he claims his god wants are indeed objective.  In that eveyr other Christian makes the same claim, about different sets of morals, he, and they, must present evidence their god exist, and agrees with them. 

That has yet to happen.

They also have the problem that they must assert that everything is their god’s will.  Which would make the pastor’s reference to the Holocaust a problem. 

“I don’t believe in objective morality.”

“Really? So, you’re saying that the Holocaust was okay?”

“No, the Holocaust was a horrible evil.”

“If there is no objective morality, then the evil of the Holocaust is just a matter of personal opinion. It would not be evil from the perspective of the participants.”

“All I know is that based on what I understand about human flourishing, the Holocaust was wrong.”

“But without objective morality, there is a possible world in which gassing and burning Jews was a good thing…”

This does not make the person asserting subjective morals look bad, it makes the theist’s base argument, “God is good” fail. 

The moral argument does indeed show that many people think there is objective morality; it doesn’t show it does.   

There is no absolute measure, and thus we are not moving toward or away from something that doesn’t exist.  What we do see is that morals change and generally change to those that improve the existence of humans, assisting civilization.   Morals may not be objective but they can be common. 

The claim that objective morality is based on the will of god fails since again, there is no evidence for objective morality at all *and* that morality for Christians depends on who or what is doing something, not an objective relationship to morality and an action.  If the will of this god is that it is okay for it to commit genocide, but not for humans, then morality becomes subjective. 

The pastor claims this “But I believe in objective morality because I believe in God, rather than believing in God because I believe in objective morality.”  Otherwise

“(1) If God does exist, then objective morality does exist.

(2) Objective morality does not exist.

(3) Therefore, God does not exist.”

7 thoughts on “Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – the moral argument for a god

  1. I often wonder why atheists/non-believers need to explain anything. The simple fact is we don’t believe there is any kind of supernatural entity/power behind ANYTHING that exists. Why must we continue to validate and explain why this is our persuasion?


  2. Objective morality is, apparently, subjective. And why can it not exist (objective or subjective) if there is no god? So, the syllogism is faulty to start with. There are too many logic fallacies at work here to even begin a rational discussion. The moral conflicts within the bible alone demand discernment, which is judgement, which is also subjective.

    It all comes down to “I believe what I believe because it is what I want to believe.” Right? So, no talking/writing matters.

    It’s pointless. Sorry. 🙂


  3. Wait, they’re making a leap and assuming that objective morality exists. That’s cheating. Also, even if we proved objective morality existed, who’s to say God made it, which God? So many problems with this reasoning lol.


  4. Religious morality was/is informed by man, not the other way around. This is why the phony-baloney Christian fundamentalists can continue to demonize homosexuality but none of the other so-called “abominations” in the Torah; working on the Sabbath, wearing clothes made of two different materials, etc. God didn’t pass morality down to man, man passed it up to “god”. There is simply no such thing as “objective morality”.

    Liked by 1 person

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