For the evolutionist, where does morality come from?

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Charles Darwin gave a direct answer to the origin of morality: “A man who has no assured and ever present belief in the existence of a personal God or of a future existence with retribution and reward, can have for his rule of life, as far as I can see, only to follow those impulses and instincts which are the strongest or which seem to him the best ones” The Autobiography of Charles Darwin, 1958, New York: W.W. Norton, p. 94.

To this effect the evolutionist Dan Barker stated: “There are no actions in and of themselves that are always absolutely right or wrong. It depends on the context. You cannot name an action that is always absolutely right or wrong. I can think of an exception in any case” Barker, Dan and Peter Payne (2005), “Does Ethics Require God?” http://www.ffrf.org/about/bybarker/ethics_debate.php.

William Provine, an evolutionist, adamantly states: “There is no foundation for ethics.” “Evolution: Free Will and Punishment and Meaning in Life,” 1998, http://eeb.bio.utk.edu/darwin/DarwinDayProvineAddress.htm. Thus, to the evolutionist there is no right and wrong; there is no moral standard other than human “impulses and instincts; and to them no law can accuse a person of immoral behavior.

Where do we get the idea of right and wrong?

We can’t know what is wrong unless we know what is right. We get the idea of right and wrong from the Creator who gave us the laws of morality. Can you live in a country where there are no laws of right and wrong? No one in his right mind would live in a place that permits murder, theft, lying…etc. Laws of right and wrong protect society from anarchy, chaos and finally collapse.

Along these lines, C.S. Lewis in “Mere Christianity” explained that the existence of justice proves the existence of God, “My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust…? Of course, I could have given up my idea of justice by saying it was nothing but a private idea of my own. But if I did that, then my argument against God collapsed too—for the argument depended on saying that the world was really unjust, not simply that it did not happen to please my private fancies. Thus in the very act of trying to prove that God did not exist—in other words, that the whole of reality was senseless—I found I was forced to assume that one part of reality—namely my idea of justice—was full of sense. Consequently, atheism turns out to be too simple” 1952, pp. 45-46, New York: Simon and Schuster.

Atheists must reject morality because they don’t want God, even though immorality does not make sense.

Check out our Bible Answers page for more information on a variety of topics.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team



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