It can easily be shown that humanity does not derive ethical standards from
We do not believe it justified to
kill anyone who
tries to convert us to another religion (as commanded in Deuteronomy
13:6-10) because we have ethical standards that are based on reasoning and modern ethical philosophy, not on writings in old books.
- Many of the
examples of behaviour
that we see in holy books such as
the Bible are rejected by modern people as unethical.
For example, the idea that it would be justified for a whole society to be
exterminated because they
were bad influences is quite abhorrent to modern people, yet this is what
Moses, one of the most 'holy'
of the prophets of the Old Testament, ordered the captains of Israel to do.
Moses did exclude the virgin girls who he said could be saved for the use
of those doing the extermination.)
- The laws set down in holy books such as the Bible are not justifiable
under any reasonable system of ethical behaviour.
The fact that we do not, for example, kill an animal because it has been
approached by a woman intending to have sexual relations with it, as is
set down in
Leviticus 20:16, shows that our ethical
standards come from elsewhere than the Bible.
Obviously even the great majority of those who follow Christianity (and
Judaism and Islam for that matter) pick and choose which commandments written
in the Old Testament (sacred to all three religions) they accept as
justifiable and reasonable.
They use ethical standards acquired elsewhere than in holy writings to decide
right and wrong, and to select those rules and actions in the 'holy books'
to take notice of and which to put aside.
Islam holds that Mohamed was the ideal example for Muslim behaviour, yet no
decent modern Muslim would say that
having sex with a nine-year-old
girl was an ethical thing to do.