Originally posted by LemonJello
In another thread, Thread 157510, sonship and I were debating whether or not his theistic moral view conduces to moral development. He maintains that it does, whereas I disagree. Here are some elements of his and related moral views that I think are essentially childish. From the outset, it should be noted that this commentary is specific ...[text shortened]... us) account of goodness is conceptually prior to any account of what makes for a moral exemplar.
Way, way, waaaaaay too much to sort through in one thread.
It's a wall of text that offends more by its existence than even its content.
But let's give it a shot anyway.
(1) The idea of moral error as disobedience to God.
I think it's cute when the academic world tries to grapple with non-scientific realities by applying awkward fitting terms to every day items.
What, in God's green earth, is a "more explanatively reasonable basis" for moral shortcomings?
I'm jumping way ahead with you on this one, because God hasn't called for us to be moral.
He's given us a code of conduct which is so far superior to morality that morality looks crass in comparison.
That notwithstanding, you've still got it wrong.
When a parent invokes "Because daddy says so," it is hoped the father only uses this in cases where the underpinning reasons are beyond the grasp of the child.
The child transfers the onus of their decision by deferring to the known attribute of the love their parent has for them... at least until that answer is no longer satisfactory for them.
God neither encourages nor endorses the emotion of guilt.
Since God is the ultimate standard of good, of perfection, He would be remiss to condone any behavior which deviates from Him.
(2) Surrendering of the will and reason in deference to an authority.
You're kinda repeating yourself, but there is a small distinction.
Nonetheless, you are wrong again.
God continually requests man to reason with Him, implores him to think things through.
We are constantly deferring our positions to authority on a daily basis.
None of us are expert at anything, although some of us may be quite qualified on our areas of consideration.
No one here (as far as I can recall, except for the occasional wing-nut) has pointed others to themselves as the final authority on any matter.
We have all used references and cited sources to justify our positions.
Is it really so surprising to have the final authority on all matters be able to point to Himself?
(3) The taking of moral commands as utterly inviolable.
See my rejoinder to the first point, namely, God has not called us to be moral.
His standard for us far surpasses such trivial pursuits.
(4) Punishment or reward as a moral motivators. Fixation on retribution and recompense.
This concept has literally zero to do with orthodox Christianity, or with a stable-minded Christian.
You're confusing the simplistic bone-headed emotionalism that has been traipsed about for the last century ('God loves you sooooo much, He just couldn't live without you,' is one example of this crap thinking) with actual doctrine.
The sloganeering found in the pages of Christianity for Idiots is decidedly far removed from the actual truth of the matter.
(5) Relationship of utter dependence on some authority figure.
Some utter is good.
As in, our very existence is utterly in His hands.
As in, the universe is utterly held together by Him.
So when you think in terms like that, it makes sense.
Since God created EVERYTHING, you can't have the apple without the core.
However, human free will is not the orthodox explanation for the existence of evil.
Not even sure how you get that out of anything within the bounds of Christianity, as it literally makes no sense whatsoever.
That being said, God created us to be like Him, for His good pleasure.
Who would want a bunch of idiots?
(6) Doctrines of original sin.
This "bizarre doctrine of ancestral sin" speaks more realistically about the chronic human condition than any jack ass with a PhD behind their name has conjured up.
In fact, a string of letter horny morons have even gone so far as to imagine a world in which evil doesn't exist, insisting, for instance, that the rape and mutilation of a helpless infant at the hands of an otherwise functioning sentient being is an unfortunate misstep.
Or maybe it was a fundamental error.
Something like that.
(7) Salvific doctrines surrounding grace.
Because this newest incompetent, Nowell-Smith, is so hung up on guilt, he cannot fathom love as anything but emotion and therefore has no concept of what the grace of God consists of.
His ignorance is only exceeded by his vocabulary in describing the same.
(8) Heteronomous and restraint-based hallmarks.
Let's see if we can sort this crap out.
Morality is the acceptable conduct of people living within a group.
Man must act in accordance with this morality in order to remain living in the group.
Man does not always want to act in accordance with this morality, but is compelled to do so or suffer the consequences associated with the behavior.
Here, we see the outside agency is the morality, restraining the behavior of the individual.
According to Nowell-Smith, a much more mature approach would be for the individual to merely reflect positively on what sort of person he should strive to be... in order to remain in the group.
The mind reels.
(9) Incompatibility with moral development
You have taken many words in order to convey absolutely nothing.