Can There Be Good Without God?
By: Gary L. Hutchens
Is there really a God somewhere out there? Does God really exist? Is God just an invention of our minds to give us a sense of purpose and security? Could we be the result of some seeding process by an alien race far more sophisticated than us? Are we just a bunch of dupes for believing in a God we cannot see face to face? Is faith in God a hoax?
Many people state emphatically, “There is no God!” Many others state just as emphatically their certainty that God does exist. How can we know for sure who’s right? Unbelievers make fun of the faith of believers, and believers make fun of anyone who would not believe. Who’s correct?
Many lines of reasoning are pursued in attempting to make the case on either side of the question. Unbelievers mock the idea of having faith in a God who cannot be seen. But the truth is that belief in their system requires at least as much faith as the faith they mock in those who believe in God. If empirical evidence alone is to decide the matter, unbelievers have no more leg to stand on than do believers. So, again, what is the truth?
Deep biblical, philosophical and scientific reasoning can be delved into, far beyond the capacity of this article to deal with. So, let’s look at one simple question. If this question can be logically and objectively answered without God, then score a big one for the unbelievers. If it cannot, then honesty demands admission that God exists.
Here’s the question: “How can goodness be defined, or explained, without God?” To answer the question you ultimately have to come up with a standard that establishes goodness on an absolute, universal and consistent level. Anything else would be worthless due to its subjective nature. Now, what possible standard could there be to determine the bottom line as to goodness without God?
Feelings cannot qualify as a reliable standard, because feelings differ from person to person, and from point in time to point in time. A personal belief system cannot work, for each person’s determination of goodness would be different. Values would differ from person to person and change as a person’s life goes on. One person might feel that stealing and murder are bad, while another might see them as perfectly acceptable.
Neither can society at large serve as the standard, for the same reason. Any conclusion as to goodness reached by society would be based on the will of the majority, and that does not necessarily prove anything to be truly good or bad. If the majority felt strongly, and so ruled, that rape was a good thing, would that make rape good? Certainly not!
Well, what other standard could there be? There is none. It is either God, or it is man. There is no third option. As demonstrated, neither an individual person nor a group of people making up a society meets the test. Some might suggest that nature determines goodness. Be careful; nature is blind, cold, harsh and moves beast to kill beast with no feelings of conscience. Nature would reduce mankind to the level of beast.
The impossibility of answering the simple question “How can goodness be defined without God?” is powerful proof that God exists. Undeniably, there is goodness in this world. But true goodness cannot be defined without God. God is the fundamental, most comprehensive definition of goodness. To deny God necessitates denying goodness. Without God the whole concept of goodness is meaningless.
Goodness is what brings quality to life. Have you been trying to build a good life without God as your designer and guide? Such is impossible. If you desire true happiness and meaning in your life, turn to God. We are here to help you, if you’ll just ask…
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Gary L. Hutchens