Making Sense of Morality: Objections from Euthyphro and Evil

Various ethics terms
Image by Mary Pahlke from Pixabay

Introduction

In the previous post, I argued that there is another explanation for the ground of core morals, such as justice and love are good, and murder and rape are wrong: they are grounded in God. However, there are a couple serious objections that I will address here, and then I will summarize several of my findings.

Euthyphro Dilemma

“Euthyphro” poses a dilemma: are morals good because God commands them, or does God command them because they are good? If the former, it seems God’s will alone is the ground of morals. But, it seems God could will whatever God wanted, and it would be moral. If so, God could will things we clearly know are wrong, even evil, such as justice being bad, and rape being permissible. Earlier, I suggested this issue seems to face Allah, due to the supremacy of Allah’s sovereignty.

Back to Evil

So far, I’ve suggested that the best explanation of our core morals is that they are grounded in God’s moral character. But, is there more we can infer by reason?

Final Thoughts

We have completed our survey of the major moral views in the west. I’ve argued that the best explanation for our core morals is that they are universals that are grounded in God’s morally good character. I’ve argued for this while also arguing for several more key points; e.g.:

For Further Reading

William Alston, “What Euthyphro Should Have Said,” in Philosophy of Religion: A Reader and Guide, gen. ed. William Lane Craig

Professor of ethics, philosophy of religion @ Biola's MA Christian Apologetics. Interests: ethics, knowledge, nominalism, & how Christians have been naturalized