Divine Command Theory

Topics: Morality, Ethics, Religion Pages: 6 (2307 words) Published: April 19, 2012
Divine Command Theory is an ethical theory which claims that God’s will is the foundation of ethics. Based on Divine Command Theory, things are morally right or wrong, compulsory, allowed or disallowed if God or deities commands it. In Divine Command Theory, what makes an act moral or immoral is that God commands or prohibited it. Apart from being commanded by God to do certain thing, some other aspect of Divine Command Theory, also hold that an action is moral if Divine motivated. In this motivation aspect of Divine Command Theory, we can say that apart from the religious documents someone can be motivated to carry out moral. The Divine Command Theory is divided by some Scholars into three ethical sub frame work: (1) Religion communities, (2) Command as motivated (3) Created morality. These three sub frame work is in practice in all the major religion of the world today, like Christian, Islam and Judaism, but with slit difference. The Religion Communities Frame Work

This type of Divine command Theory hold that only God commands is moral. And that only the true believers of God’s command or religion community members can explain and obey God’s command. For instance some Christian denomination claim that when you are in the Church auditorium and it compound one need to put off his shoe to follow what God instructed Moses in Media, thus seeing the auditorium to represent the holy place in that particular passage of the Bible, while other do not interpret the passage that way. The Religion Community Frame work views the Divine Command Theory meaningless to unbelievers. And that they (non believer) cannot abide with God command except they believed in God. The Command as Motivation Framework

This frame work holds that some actions are morally right without Divine commands, but God’s commands empower or motivate people to act morally. In other words some actions are morally good even if God do not issue command, but the commands of God put people in proper shape to act in accordance with that morality The proponent of this frame work believed that only individual who truly believed in God can obey God’s command. They claim that if someone did not believe in God, he may want to be moral, but such person will act contrary to these moral when they are in difficult situation because of lack of motivation. For example if someone who does not believe in God, he may decide not to steal but when faced with challenges like; lacking or hunger he may revised his decision. But someone who believed in God will be motivated by the command to abide by the term. The Created Morality Frame Work

Created morality hold that only God will and commands are moral. Any actions outside God are immoral. This framework tries to establish that only those who believed in God can do things which are moral. And that anything done without acknowledge to God’s will is immoral. In other words no action is good on its own, rather God determine what is good. For instance if someone refuse to steal in other not to put pains on ethers as a result of the loose of his property, the person is not moral because he is not refraining because God is against that act. DEFENCE OF DIVINE COMMAND THEORY

The view of divine command theory is one that ties together morality and religion in a way that is very comfortable for most people, because it provides a solution to pesky arguments like relativism and objectivity of ethics. An action is morally acceptable if God commands such an action and morally wrong if God prohibit such an action. The theory has been criticized by numerous philosophers, including Plato, Kai Nielson, and J.L. Mackie. The theory also has many defenders, both classic and contemporary, such as Thomas Aquinas, Robert Adams, and Philip Quinn. Although the basic premise of the divine command theory is rather simple (what God commands is good, therefore do only that). Things get...
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Euthyphro’s Divine Moral Dilemma Essay
  • Divine Command Theory Essay
  • Divine Command Theory Essay
  • Essay about Divine command theory
  • Essay about Dialogue: Divine Command Theory and Gods
  • Divine Command Theory Essay
  • Devine Command Theory Essay
  • Essay about Diivine Command Theory

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free