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 God's Ways

1. God makes choices.
2. God makes the right choices.
3. God doesn't just make up what right is.
4. There is good reason to obey God.


1. God makes choices!
Benevolence is volitional.
God is benevolent.
Therefore God is volitional.

Love is a choice.
God is loving.
So God makes choices.

2. God makes the right choices!
Perfect benevolence fulfills moral obligation.
God is perfectly benevolent.
Therefore God fulfills moral obligation.

Being loving fulfills the law.
God is loving.
So God fulfills the law.

3. God doesn't just make up what right is!
The fundamental reason benevolence is obligatory is the intrinsic value of the benefit willed.
God's volitions are distinct from the intrinsic value of benefit.
Therefore God's volitions are not the fundamental reason benevolence is obligatory.

The main reason we should will good is because good is good.
God's will and the obvious fact that good is good are two different things.
So God's will is not the main reason why we should will good.

4. There is a good reason to obey God!
God legislates and exemplifies benevolence.
Benevolence is obligatory.
Therefore we are obligated to follow God's instruction.

God teaches us to will good.
Willing good is good.
So it is good to obey what God teaches us.

 2010/1/18 18:38
Giggles
Member



Joined: 2009/12/12
Posts: 592


 Re: God's Ways

Interesting post. What is your purpose? What would be the end result of such reasoning?

A few thoughts I had after reading this are:

-Inductive syllogisms are not good foundations for good logic, let alone truth.
-Some of the premises built upon here are presuppositions that assume some degree of truth that finds source outside of God.

-This sounds like it was born more in a philosophy lecture than off of God's word.


_________________
Paul

 2010/1/18 20:28Profile









 Re:

Quote:
Interesting post. What is your purpose? What would be the end result of such reasoning?

Glorifying God and promoting revival (that is, inspiring people to obey him).

Quote:
Inductive syllogisms are not good foundations for good logic, let alone truth.

Interesting. I think syllogisms are DEductive not INductive. I'm pretty sure inductive logic refers to probability and guessing. Maybe I'm wrong?

Quote:
Some of the premises built upon here are presuppositions that assume some degree of truth that finds source outside of God.

These premises are all consistent with my firm belief that all truth starts with God. Maybe you could point out which ones you thought might be inconsistent with that?

Quote:
This sounds like it was born more in a philosophy lecture than off of God's word.

Before I studied God's word I never thought like this. The inspiration for this meditation is my desire to magnify the truth that God is loving, just, righteous, upright, holy, perfect, good, praiseworthy, and worthy of our obedience. All of these things I've read in my bible. What I've done is explain or expound upon what these things mean. Sometimes we hear words so often and we can neglect to take the time to understand them.

The word 'philosophy' comes from the words 'philo' (love) and 'sophia' (wisdom). So philosophy literally means the 'love of wisdom'. So, yes, it is true this meditation is highly philosophical.

"Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding." Proverbs 4:7

Points One through Three in my meditation explain what the Bible means when it says that God is loving, good, righteous, and similar things. Point Four is an encouragement to follow the example that God has set for us by being loving, good, righteous, holy and all those things.

 2010/1/18 22:36
Giggles
Member



Joined: 2009/12/12
Posts: 592


 Re: God's Ways

These just seem off to me, as if God is somehow bound by universal laws of benevolence. Like in point 3, you distinguish benevolence as having intrinsic value in and of itself, then go on to say the main reason we should be good is for good itself NOT because God's will is good. To me this sounds like a wedge being diven between the need for God as the basics of ethics and morals, which is why I said it sounds as though it was born in a philosophy class. By that I meant this sounds like something an agnostic professor would teach in a philosophy class at a public university as proof that we don't need God to have morals as a society. I would disagree with this. God is the reason good is good. There is no good apart from Him. This whole thing seems to exalt goodness, and because God and His will and commands happen to line up with goodness, we should follow and obey Him. The end of what you're saying I agree with just not the reasoning.

Anyhoo, not trying to get into a debate with you. God bless.


_________________
Paul

 2010/1/19 1:30Profile









 Re:

I appreciate your input Giggles. I anticipated that point # three might seem off to some people. I don't take it as you starting a debate with me. I would like to understand how I can get my point across without giving the impression that I'm an agnostic philosophy professor.

First, here is something that may help you understand what I believe.

God has always had moral law in his intelligence. God has always known that love is right. God has always known what is right and has always been willing to do what is right.

Quote:
These just seem off to me, as if God is somehow bound by universal laws of benevolence.

I don't think I would say that God is 'bound' by knowing right from wrong. God is willing to do what is right. It is not as if he is being forced into it. You could say that God imposes boundaries on his own intention. He refuses to be unloving. He would never want to be free of being 'bound' in this sense. But I think it is more like he is free to do what is right and he is completely willing to act according to his perfect knowledge of what is right.

Quote:
Like in point 3, you distinguish benevolence as having intrinsic value in and of itself, then go on to say the main reason we should be good is for good itself NOT because God's will is good.To me this sounds like a wedge being diven between the need for God as the basics of ethics and morals, which is why I said it sounds as though it was born in a philosophy class. By that I meant this sounds like something an agnostic professor would teach in a philosophy class at a public university as proof that we don't need God to have morals as a society.

I believe we do need God in order to have both morals and society.

We would not know moral law unless God had first created us.

If we were not designed by a loving, wise, and powerful creator then we would not be able to trust that our moral judgments are correct. We could not trust our five senses, our minds, our consciences, or anything. We would have no absolute knowledge, moral or otherwise.

And of course there would be no society to have morals if God had not given us life.

So, we agree that we have morals in society because of God.

Quote:
I would disagree with this. God is the reason good is good.

You suggested there is a reason that good is good. Do you believe it is possible for good to not be good. What would that mean? Or did I misunderstand?

Quote:
There is no good apart from Him.

I agree that good is possible because of God.

Quote:
This whole thing seems to exalt goodness, and because God and His will and commands happen to line up with goodness, we should follow and obey Him.

You mentioned "exalting goodness". How good do you think good is?

It might help to know that I consider God's happiness to be the cornerstone of goodness. It is also good for people to be happy but it is especially important for God to be happy.

However important you consider God's happiness to be, that's how important I consider goodness to be. There is no goodness if God is not happy.

You said something like God's will happens to line up with goodness. It came across to me as if you were saying it is just a coincidence or something that God wills what is good. I would say that God's wills good because he knows that good is good. God knows that happiness or well-being is good, valuable, and to be sought after for himself and his creation. I wouldn't say he just happens to be benevolent (good-willing).

Has this reply helped you to understand why I believe what I do?

 2010/1/19 3:44





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