Earlier this year, I highlighted the warnings of rejecting God, coming from the mouth of an atheist. Richard Dawkins saw the moral degradation of world society and couldn’t help to understand that the world’s rejection of God’s existence (that he, no doubt, helped catalyze) has led us here. He warned that it would continue, and in recent months, America has certainly seen Dawkins’ warnings come true.
With the rejection of God comes the rejection of two important concepts that keep civilized society together: the existence of objective moral obligations and duties, and the existence of intrinsic human value that is grounded in our being created in the Image of God.
With the rejection of the first, there is no objective “right” or “wrong,” all thoughts, actions, and behaviors just are- they have no moral value whatsoever, and none can be correctly judged as “evil” or “good.” Every evil act, from the “eugenics” promoted by Planned Parenthood’s founder Margaret Sanger to domestic and international child sex trafficking, have become common in our world. Politicians, the media, and even everyday citizens often turn a blind eye to these acts because “who is to say that these acts are ‘evil’?”
With the rejection of the second, there is no reason to think that humans have intrinsic value and should not be used; however, we wish towards our goals. A human’s value is wholly constituted in their ability to contribute to an arbitrary purpose set by someone in power over them. In the event that a person has a goal of achieving career development or sexual pleasure, that means that if a child must be murdered or raped in order to achieve that goal, the rape and murder are not wrong because that child possesses no intrinsic value and, of course, the rape and murder are not evil because there is no objective “right” or “wrong,” “good” or “evil” by which to properly categorize the rape or murder (or torture, or theft, etc.).
What Have We Become?
As a result of this rejection of God, people understand that they are now permitted to act however they wish to whomever they wish to get whatever they wish. While not new to them or their time in history, Frank Turek and Norman Geisler made this observation several years ago in their book “Legislating Morality: Is It Wise, Is It Legal, Is It Possible“:
This rejection of God and the resultant moral turmoil in America has led to numerous evils; three of the most recent murders have been those of George Floyd, Cannon Hinnants, and Jacob Blake. Americans know that murder is objectively morally wrong. Because of this knowledge, we are horrified and desire swift justice. Unfortunately, many have used these murders as justification to act in ways that rational citizens and leaders would normally not tolerate, much less encourage.
Objective moral values and duties do exist, as evidenced by Americans’ reaction to the murders, and we must adhere to them no matter how tempting it is to rationalize their usage toward some “righteous” end. Yes, evil and injustice (properly defined) exist in this world, but repaying evil with evil will not fix the problem.
Rational and moral people understand that when we use evil to fight the evil that we betray a satisfaction with trading one evil for another evil. And in reality, when we fight evil with evil, we are not removing evil but multiplying its existence. We are taken less seriously because we have not taken the time to reason through our chosen methods for seeking justice (properly defined) to see the dire implications of such choices. Such knee-jerk reactions are completely emotive, devoid of any reason or morality. They are more about getting revenge (evil) rather than getting justice (good). Rational and moral people know that it is better to address the original evil with morally good means in order to accomplish a morally good end of justice (again, properly defined).
The Struggle For Power
But there is one major hurdle to overcome. As I mentioned, objective moral values and duties exist. This basic knowledge is written on the heart of every human being. But objective moral values and duties cannot exist unless God exists to be an objective foundation for them.
In America, it seems that so many on the various political sides (liberal, conservative, libertarian, etc.) are attempting to get along without recognizing the existence of the Moral Law-Giver.
Without the recognition of such an objective standard by which to judge what is truly a moral evil and what is truly a morally good method to resolve the moral evil, then everything is up for grabs, even within the various political parties (as we can see by the wide range of views even within the two main political parties in America).
If God does not exist, what is “right” ultimately comes down to a power struggle. Whichever side forces those who disagree into submission (no matter how) will ultimately determine what is right and what is wrong with nothing else to challenge them except for a stronger force that comes in later to turn everything upside down yet again.
In recent months, we have seen one side looting and rioting in an attempt to demonstrate their power and strike fear into the citizens in order to force what they want on those who disagree. Unfortunately, we have seen many in leadership, influential, and governmental positions in America encourage these actions for political gain.
What Will We Become?
Without the objective standard of God, we have no choice but to allow aberrant behaviors. For our distaste of them is merely that: taste. Without God, our aversion to the desires of those rioting, looting, and murdering (along with the actions themselves) is only an opinion that is no more valid or reflective of reality than the rioters’, looters’, and murders’ opinions. But Americans know differently. They know that objective morality exists. For this knowledge to be possible, God must exist, and unless Americans are prepared to recognize that reality and defend it, there is zero chance that order and freedom can be restored to our country on a long-term basis.
If Americans wish to get control of their country back and restore rational action across their cities, they are going to have to recognize the reality of God’s existence. Not merely paying lip service to His existence like so many politicians (and many Americans) do, but seriously commit to what His existence and objective moral standard means for each individual’s responsibility as American citizens. We have to put our pride in check (which is not something that Americans are keen on doing) and recognize our sinful condition and our tendency to try to correct past and current sins by committing even more sins and consciously choose the moral high ground and vote for those who also will choose the moral high ground.
It is only in our recognition of this common, sinful trait among all people (of all colors, nationalities, social/economic statuses, etc.) that we can find common ground to move forward. And it is only through the recognition of the need for forgiveness through Christ that we can stop pointing fingers and progress together towards reconciliation and being “one nation, under God” again. If God is removed from the American equation, the only result will be an irrecoverable loss of freedom for all.