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EVIL2    4'?m2f Are good and evil arbitrary distinctions by God?

AMY -- (enters, crosses slinging backpack over one shoulder)

LIZ -- (follows, carrying tablet) Alright, Crocket, I've got you 
this time.

AMY -- (stops, turns) Do I detect another attack on 
Christianity?

LIZ -- You're not going to wiggle out of this one. I've got Plato 
and Russell on my side. (points to tablet)

AMY -- Plato and who?

LIZ -- Russell. Bertrand Russell.

AMY -- Can I assume that you just came out of Philosophy class?

LIZ -- Yes, and I'm loaded for bear. I don't know how any 
intelligent human being could be a Christian in this day and 
age.

AMY -- You apparently have an irrefutable argument against 
Christianity?

LIZ -- Not me. Plato and Russell.

AMY -- Okay. Lay it on me.

LIZ -- Okay. (reads) Plato asks Euthy... Euthyp....

AMY -- Euthyphro?

LIZ -- Yeah, that guy. Plato asks that guy two questions. It's 
called a dilemma.

AMY -- A dilemma.

LIZ -- Yes. If you can't answer either question, it means your 
whole concept of God is all messed up. 

AMY -- We'll see. Just ask the questions.

LIZ -- Oh, sure. (reads) "Do the gods love piety because its 
holy? Or is piety holy because the gods love it?"

AMY -- You're right. I stumped. (turns) I don't know anything 
about the gods.

LIZ -- (steps into Amy's path) I knew you'd try to wiggle out it 
like that, so I have two even better questions for you.

AMY -- I'm sure you do.

LIZ -- (read) Bertrand Russell writes in him polemic, "Why I'm 
not a Christian", two questions that are not about the gods, but 
about YOUR God.

AMY -- Alright, I'm listening.

LIZ -- Russell asks, "Is there good and evil because God 
arbitrarily declared them to be good and evil, for no particular 
reason? (holds up finger) OR is God merely acknowledging good 
and evil that exists outside of his control?"

AMY -- Those are the only choices?

LIZ -- It's called a dilemma. I got you, don't I?

AMY -- Well, if those are the only choices....

LIZ -- See, if you say that good and evil are arbitrary 
definitions of God, you can't really claim that your God is 
good.  He only says he's good. And if you say there is good and 
evil outside of God's control, you have to admit that God is not 
in control of everything.

AMY -- Those would be the logical conclusions.

LIZ -- I got you, don't I?

AMY -- Only if those are the only choices.

LIZ -- Of course those are the only choices. It's a dilemma.

AMY -- Actually, those are not the only choices.

LIZ -- What choice did I miss?

AMY -- The choice that acknowledges God as a person, not an 
impersonal force.

LIZ -- I don't get it. 

AMY -- Neither did Bertrand Russell. I'll bet he didn't see his 
father very much either.

LIZ -- What does my father have to do with it?!

AMY -- When a person grows up without a warm nurturing 
relationship his father, he sees God as a distant figurehead or 
as an impersonal force. He sees right and wrong as arbitrary 
decisions for no good reason or he sees God as powerless and at 
the affect of circumstances beyond his control.

LIZ -- Leave my personal life out of it, Crocket. You still 
haven't answered your dilemma, my Christian friend. This is YOUR 
God we're talking about. Is your God powerless or is he just 
arbitrary about good and evil?

AMY -- Neither. My father is Heaven is a person who has 
character. His character is what determines good and evil, not 
some arbitrary decision or some outside circumstances. The Bible 
says God is good, good to perfection. If I strive for God I am 
doing good and if I strive against God I am doing evil. There's 
nothing arbitrary or powerless about it.

LIZ -- Ooo! I should know better that to talk to you! (exiting) 
You are such a goody goody.

AMY -- (backing to opposite exit) I know. I'm getting more and 
more like my father every day.

2013 Bob Snook. Conditions for use:
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