Guests: Alden Thompson and Bob Cushman
Major Texts: Gen 2:16,17,1:26-28; James 3:9, Acts 17:26, Proverbs 4:31, Matt 5:44-48, Rev 20:11-13
The title of the lesson this week raises the prospect of some very interesting and challenging discussions about a matter that is of great significance to all humans namely, the question of morality.
We might begin this discussion with the observation that humans have, on a grand scale, a moral sense. We cannot say that ALL humans have a moral sense for it seems to have been destroyed in some persons, but at least initially, at the point of birth and on into early childhood, people have moral sense. The question is, then, where did this come from? Evolutionists argue It emerged during the process of evolving. They are inclined to note that animals have emotions and they have something of a sense of right and wrong. So, since humans are the most sentient of beings on earth, one would expect the development of a moral sense would be grandest in them. Creationists take the opposite view, saying that a moral sense is something put within humans by the design of God. What to do?
- First we might note that it is true that other animals have something of a moral sense and that the moral sense in humans is more developed than in other animals so, in a sense, things are as the evolutionists say. But how can sentience come from mere matter? And why are there not some humans with no moral sense for one would have expected some humans to have evolved in a different way. Furthermore, why Is the moral sense so universal in its categories? The idea of some original design answers these questions well. (CS. Lewis, in his well-known book Mere Christianity makes some powerful arguments and draws some convincing conclusions from this matter of the presence of moral sense in humans).
- If God is Creator then one would rightfully assume God described the categories of right and wrong. But if there is no God, how would humans establish moral codes that would be good and binding on all people?
- The “inalienable rights” so prized by US Citizens are presumed to have been granted by a Creator. What happens to those Inalienable rights if there is no perceived Creator? How safe would they be? What happens to people who are self-referenced? What happens to societies that idolize what someone called “the autonomous self?”
- How might the idea of being made in the “image of God” affect or be related to the question of morality?
- What are the implications creation produces for the connectedness of all humans?
- How do you think the fact of creation might affect the whole issue of human accountability?
- Since God made all things, do you think good is good because God said it would be good, or do you think goodness is a much grander issues that involves God himself?