Utilitarianism 2

Topics: Ethics, John Stuart Mill, Jeremy Bentham Pages: 2 (697 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Utilitarianism is the ethical doctrine which essentially states that which is good is that which brings about the most happiness to the most people. John Stuart Mill believed that the decisions we make should always benefit the most people as much as possible regardless of the consequences to the minority or even yourself. He would say all that matters in the decision of right versus wrong is the amount of happiness produced by the consequences. In the decisions we make Mill would say that we need to weigh the outcomes and make our decision based on that outcome that benefits the majority. For Mill, pleasure is the only desirable consequence of our decisions or actions. The Judeo-Christian ethic embraced by Augustine places questions of right and wrong under the authority of a divine creator - God. The Judeo-Christian ethic can be summed up in one word - Love. In Matthew 22:40 Jesus says: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love you neighbor as yourself.” When Augustine said, “Love God and do what you will”, I believe he is asserting the fact that when a person loves God truly he or she is in God’s will. John 14:15 says, “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” If a person obeys God which is loving God and loving his creation then a person is in his will. The decisions made by a person in God’s will are thus ethical decision in view of the fact that God is the ultimate moral authority. To help his creation in determining right from wrong he has provided the Bible. Although not every ethical question is covered in the Bible he has also given us his Spirit for guidance.

Utilitarianism like the Judeo-Christian ethic is viewing others in a high regard. Utilitarian desire the greatest happiness as an end and the Judeo-Christian perspective seeks love and obedience to God. These two...
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