Being Good Without God

I was talking to someone recently who brought up the subject of Atheism. He referred to a TV clip he saw of a picture of Santa Claus and the words: “Why believe in a god? Just be good for goodness’ sake

His argument was pithy, but does it make any sense?

Let’s analyze the tea leaves on this one.

Who makes the rules of right and wrong? Who gives the orders? If there is no absolute moral lawgiver, where is the obligation to obey? The only alternative is that humans might make things right. But the rub is that what a man gives, he can take away.

Only God gives absolute rights. As the Declaration of Independence so eloquently declares, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.”” History shows us that moral laws are as indelibly written into the universe as its physical laws.

When atheists use the word “good,” what do they mean by that? If it can mean whatever an individual (Mr. Psychologist) or group of individuals (Mr. United Nations) wants it to mean, in a day, it can change like the whispering wind.
Every person doing what is right in their own eyes is an example of total relativism. Try living in a totally relativistic society, doing business, and conducting honest politics when honesty and integrity are all up to the individual; morality would become meaningless. For monsters like Stalin and Mao Tse-tung, being “good” can mean killing anyone who differs from their point of view for what they personally consider to be the greater public good. Atheistic France and Russia have already attempted it. The most famous atheist of them all, Nietzsche, said that when God died, all objective values died with him.

For an atheist to say, “Being good for goodness’ sake” implies that there must be an ultimate goodness. I can get my mind around that because that is exactly what Christianity believes. There is such a thing as goodness—absolute goodness. Many people have goodness within them, but unlike man, God does not have goodness; He IS goodness itself. Jesus Christ on earth was the personification of absolute goodness.

I can remember being taught in school, as if it came straight from a pipeline in heaven that matter, that the universe was eternal. It was gospel science. Though I never heard the teacher say so, he sure was trying to instill it in our little mushy brains that there was no need for God, no need for a first cause; only what has a beginning needs a creator. But along came the Hubble telescope and with it the inconvenient truth and the Big Bang evidence, and they slowly stopped kicking that empty bean can down the public-school road.

Carl Sagan said, and in some repeated TV series, he is still saying, “The Cosmos is everything that ever was, is, or will be.” World-famous atheist Bertrand Russell, when asked what caused the universe, replied that nothing did. It was just “there.” What kind of cone-headed intellectual honesty is this? Where are the cold facts? Nothing produced something! Something was born out of nothing! Pardon me while I hold my hands over my head so that it won’t explode. But that sounds like someone talking with their tongue frozen to the metal flagpole.

That’s as factual as the Piltdown man who was (supposedly) found in a gravel pit in Sussex, England, in 1912 with a human cranium and ape-like jaw. The New York Times, which is absolutely convinced that there are no absolutes, printed the headline, “Darwin Theory Is Proved True.” No facts, no evidence, just wishful thinking. Oops, and may I remind you that in 1953, the Piltdown Man was proven to be a 40-year hoax?

It’s a whole lot easier to believe the first verse in the Bible:
“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.”

There is just too much junk science out there—pseudo-science that has no scientific backing. The Second Law of Thermodynamics still holds true. The universe is running out of usable energy and, therefore, cannot be eternal.

(I lack the time and space to discuss Hubble and his telescope in 1927, as well as Penzias, Smoot, and Wilson’s 1965 confirmation of his findings that space time and matter had a beginning.)

One can be good, as many atheists are, without believing in God. But one cannot be good without there being a God. That is, they can believe in a moral law (and live accordingly) without believing in God. But they cannot justify this belief without reference to a moral lawgiver (God).

The fact that there are no square circles and that all triangles have three sides is as absolute as the fact that you cannot have an objective moral law without a moral law giver.

Atheists must believe in absolute morals; otherwise, they have no accusing fingers to point at God for being unjust. No God means no right or wrong, no goodness for goodness’ sake.

Why do I want to be good? Why do you want to be good?

Because God is good, and we are made in his likeness.

Psalm 52:1 “Why do you boast in evil, O mighty man? The goodness of God endures continually.”

God is only a prayer away!

Dr. Robert Bryant