Wednesday, April 2, 2008

When Belief in God Dies

If there is no God to give mankind a hope for life after death, you may as well ignore any notions of rightness that self-appointed moralists shove at you and get on with the business of doing only what you want. Let’s be up front and admit it: we all hide within us an impulse to ignore the expectations of the law and do just what we want to do. But it won’t work.

When we remove the restriction of law, we also remove its protection. Without law we can never expect to be treated fairly or safely because society’s capacity to protect life and property evaporates. Families disintegrate. Murder, rape, and theft become rampant. Order decays into anarchy, and life must be lived in the unstable, uncertain environment of the lawless jungle.

When belief in God wanes and dies, society loses its stable underpinnings and spins downward into a maelstrom of fragmented individualism with each person out for his or her own gain and each of us the potential victim of all the others.

1 comment:

Thinker said...

You say: If there is no God to give mankind a hope for life after death, you may as well ignore any notions of rightness that self-appointed moralists shove at you and get on with the business of doing only what you want.

I ask: Why if there is no life after death must we say there can be no morality? I agree that if there is nothing bigger than us that there can be no absolute moral law, but there can still be laws of morality that a society chooses to accept. This would preclude us from individuals doing just what they want.

You say: Let’s be up front and admit it: we all hide within us an impulse to ignore the expectations of the law and do just what we want to do. But it won’t work.

I ask: Don't we have both impulses to do right and wrong? I do not necessarily think that having no belief in God leads to anarchy anymore than I think that a belief in God leads to a completely moral society. You seem to be painting this very black and white. Would you, if you did not know the Lord, instantly start committing all sorts of depravity? If this were the case, every non-believer would be in prison now for breaking U.S. laws.