Ken Ham: He’s Moral and You Are Not

This is an old theme with Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo), the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else. He’s the Australian entrepreneur who has become the ayatollah of Appalachia, famed not only for his creationist ministry, Answers in Genesis (AIG), but also for the infamous, mind-boggling Creation Museum, and for building an exact replica of Noah’s Ark.

Hambo’s new post is Do Secularists Have a Foundation for Morality? His co-author is Avery Foley, about whom we know nothing. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us and scripture references omitted:

For the atheist or secular humanist, there is no foundation for morality besides his or her own subjective opinion. … In their worldview, what makes anything immoral or wrong? Really it boils down to nothing more than their opinion. They believe that something is wrong, and therefore it must be. But who is to say that their opinion is the right one? After all, there are many different opinions on what is right and wrong. Who decides which one is right and which one is wrong?

We’ve seen this from Hambo before — for example, Ken Ham: The Sole Source of Morality. Only Hambo’s view of things can bring order out of chaos. It’s based on ancient writings about Yahweh, the planet-killer. Noah’s Ark is a powerful reminder of Yahweh’s morality.

Hambo then lists a few arguments his drooling followers may hear from secularists, and he warns in advance that they don’t provide a foundation for morality. If secularists say that society decides morality, that doesn’t work, because society often changes its opinion. He says:

One clear example of this is in regards to gay “marriage.” What was considered morally wrong by most of society is now legal, applauded, and celebrated by some groups. In this view, homosexual behavior went from being morally wrong to being morally acceptable.

Egad — according to the bible, that stuff should get the death penalty! We’re told:

Also if society determines morality, how can one society tell another society what is right or wrong? Most people would agree that the abhorrent actions of the Nazi death camps were morally wrong. But why? Nazi Germany decided as a society that these actions were morally acceptable. What right does our society have to judge their society if morality is simply a societal preference?

Or what about certain radical Muslim groups? Few would agree that blowing up innocent civilians, slaughtering hundreds of people from other religious groups, kidnapping and enslaving young women, or using children as suicide bombers is morally acceptable. Yet if morality is simply a societal preference, what right does our society have to tell their society that their actions are wrong and must be stopped?

We’re confused. Didn’t the Nazis base their actions on religion? See Religious aspects of Nazism. Surely the Muslims are religious. Ah well, let’s read on:

Evolutionists, by necessity, believe that morality (along with everything else) is simply the result of evolution. Somehow after billions of years of death, struggle, atrocities, disease, and suffering, man realized that we should strive to do the opposite! Man should oppose survival of the fittest and try to be moral. In their worldview, we are nothing more than highly evolved animals, and our brains are nothing more than chemical reactions. We are simply the product of our DNA.

Gasp — he’s right! That explains why scientists — especially biologists — are running around raping, plundering, murdering, and committing all kinds of atrocities. Hambo continues:

When faced with their worldview’s inability to provide a foundation for morality, many atheists respond by claiming that you don’t have to be religious to be moral. It’s true that plenty of atheists are moral citizens. But those who argue this way have missed the point.

Hambo tells us the point that atheists always miss:

Atheists certainly can be moral. Actually, starting with a biblical worldview, this is to be expected. God has put His law in all our hearts so even atheists, who claim that they don’t believe in the Creator God, can adhere to this law and be moral. But the point is that they have no foundation for this morality in their own worldview. They have no basis for saying something is right or wrong, moral or immoral.

Ah, that explains it. Here’s more:

According to God’s Word, humans were specially created in the image of God. We are not animals, nor are our brains simply chemical reactions. As He has from the very beginning, our Creator holds us accountable for our actions and expects us to choose and distinguish between right and wrong. As Creator, only God has the authority to tell us what is right and what is wrong. And this standard is not arbitrary. It is based on the unchanging character of the righteous, holy, and perfect Judge of the universe.

Okay — that’s not arbitrary. Moving along:

The first two people, Adam and Eve, were created morally perfect, but they chose to rebel against their Creator. No longer were they morally perfect; now they had a sin nature, which they passed on to each of their children. All of their descendants — every person on earth — is now a slave to sin and in rebellion against God.

[…]

No matter how hard we try, we can never live up to God’s perfect moral standard. We certainly are in a dire position, deserving nothing but condemnation and death.

Adam & Eve were created innocent. They had no experience. Suddenly the greatest deceiver in the universe, Satan himself, shows up and lies to them. They fell for it. Now we’re all doomed to the Lake of Fire. Nothing arbitrary about any of that! Then we get the gospel message:

But because of His great love for us and according to His mercy, the Creator came to earth as the God-man, a descendant of Adam just like us. … He then chose to become sin for us, taking the sins of the whole world upon Himself when He died on the Cross.

It’s a beautiful story. Now we come to the end:

Only the Bible provides a consistent foundation for morality that applies to all people everywhere.

So there you are, dear reader. If you want to be moral, listen to Hambo. He’s got all the answers.

Copyright © 2016. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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19 responses to “Ken Ham: He’s Moral and You Are Not

  1. Eric Lipps

    One clear example of this is in regards to gay “marriage.” What was considered morally wrong by most of society is now legal, applauded, and celebrated by some groups. In this view, homosexual behavior went from being morally wrong to being morally acceptable.

    And the other way around. But perhaps the Hamster would prefer that the biblically-sanctioned institution of slavery, to take a different example, remained in force and that slaves “know their place” and submit willingly to their masters as all decent people understood was ordained by God.

  2. “Nazi Germany decided as a society that these actions were morally acceptable. “
    That’s highly debatable, that the German society as a whole accepted Nazi death camps.
    Yes, read your bible and discover how many people the great fical deity deprived them of their lives, and in Ham’s case, the whole ark story reeks of humanity’s death, part of the consistent morality of the designer.

  3. Yes, being a godless American I must each day decide whether I want to destroy the society in which I live by committing thievery, murder, harassment and wearing dirty drawers or should I just go to the grocery store for some veggies.

    Its difficult not having an immaculate moral compass. Its hard to tell, without God, when rape is not appropriate.

  4. “Also if society determines morality, how can one society tell another society what is right or wrong?”

    Also, if religion/god/holy book determines morality how can one religion/god/holy book tell another religion/god/holy book what is right or wrong?

  5. “For the atheist or secular humanist, there is no foundation for morality besides his or her own subjective opinion. … In their worldview, what makes anything immoral or wrong? Really it boils down to nothing more than their opinion. They believe that something is wrong, and therefore it must be. But who is to say that their opinion is the right one? After all, there are many different opinions on what is right and wrong. Who decides which one is right and which one is wrong?”

    For the Christian there is no foundation for morality besides his or her own subjective opinion that Christianity is the foundation for morality. … In their worldview, what makes anything immoral or wrong? Really it boils down to nothing more than their opinion. They believe that Christianity has final say whether something is wrong, and therefore it must be. But who is to say that their opinion is the right one? After all, there are many different religious opinions on what is right and wrong. Who decides which one is right and which one is wrong?

  6. For most folks, a ‘moral’ question is about, “What is the right thing I think for me to do?”

    For Hambo and other theocrats of his ilk, ‘moral’ questions are always about, “What is the right thing I think for you to do–and how can I compel you to do it?”

  7. @Fentwin

    should I just go to the grocery store for some veggies.

    An accursed vegetarian? If the good Lawd had meant us to eat vegetables He wouldn’t have created bacon.

  8. Laurette McGovern

    I would ask this of Mr. Ham: If, Sir, hypothetically, you all of a sudden agreed there was no god, would you then become a killer, a thief, a rapist, just a POS? Of course, assuming you could get away with it (there is the Law, of course). If not, why not. What would hold you back? If yes, apparently the only thing holding you back is fear of punishment or promise of reward. You are a despicable excuse for a human being, without a moral compass.

  9. Atheists certainly can be moral.

    So, per Ham, it’s not necessary to be religious to be moral. I’m glad he cleared that up.

    Ham pontificates on the immorality of non-Christians

    Few would agree that blowing up innocent civilians, slaughtering hundreds of people from other religious groups, kidnapping and enslaving young women, or using children as suicide bombers is morally acceptable. Yet if morality is simply a societal preference, what right does our society have to tell their society that their actions are wrong and must be stopped?

    Ham, however, accepts as morality the instructions from God contained in the bible, which includes this related passage:

    10 “When you draw near to a city to fight against it, offer terms of peace to it.
    11 And if it responds to you peaceably and it opens to you, then all the people who are found in it shall do forced labor for you and shall serve you.
    12 But if it makes no peace with you, but makes war against you, then you shall besiege it.
    13 And when the Lord your God gives it into your hand, you shall put all its males to the sword,
    14 but the women and the little ones, the livestock, and everything else in the city, all its spoil, you shall take as plunder for yourselves. And you shall enjoy the spoil of your enemies, which the Lord your God has given you.
    15 Thus you shall do to all the cities that are very far from you, which are not cities of the nations here.
    16 But in the cities of these peoples that the Lord your God is giving you for an inheritance, you shall save alive nothing that breathes,
    17 but you shall devote them to complete destruction, the Hittites and the Amorites, the Canaanites and the Perizzites, the Hivites and the Jebusites, as the Lord your God has commanded,
    18 that they may not teach you to do according to all their abominable practices that they have done for their gods, and so you sin against the Lord your God.

    Yes, Ham, only the bible gives the strong foundation necessary to base decisions of right and wrong upon.

  10. Okay – that’s weird. I must not have closed a block quote tag…

    [*Voice from above*] You tried, but blew it.

  11. So true…

  12. Dave Luckett

    I suppose this is redundant for the regular readership, but for any lurker who finds this, the counterargument from evolution is this:

    Human beings are, generally speaking, social animals. (There are exceptions called “sociopaths”.) We derive a general advantage from social behavior, that is, behavior that helps to obtain the assistance, protection, skills and knowledge of other human beings, and which (at least in-group) tends not to cause their enmity or hostility.

    Since this behavior is an advantage in our environment, it is naturally selected. Out of this selection grew our tendency towards empathy (the ability to put one’s self in the place of another) and altruism.

    But of course this is only a tendency. There is a countervailing tendency towards personal reward that is also selectable. This dichotomy provides the basic discourse of morality. It has resulted in societies whose concepts of morality are at fundamental odds to our own. And yet the very worst of those moral codes are pretty much always grounded on altruism, not personal advantage.

    Strange that this should be; and yet the ancient Canaanites are said to have burned their children alive, the Aztecs had them beaten, killed and flayed, the Babylonians prostituted their daughters, all to curry the favor of their various gods – so that the whole people might prosper, no matter what the parents’ personal grief. Altruism indeed. But there were societies that considered such practices moral and altruistic, and that gives the lie to the idea that morality is a constant, handed down by God. It simply is not so.

    In more modern times, the Nazis. Ah, the Nazis! What better example of selfishness and personal aggrandisement presented as political action! What Godless immorality!

    Only it isn’t. Crudely racist as its fundamental ideas were, Nazism was highly moral in that it taught that the highest loyalty and service was to the group, the Volk, and could not be selfish. Its morality was, like that of the Canaanites, Aztecs and Babylonians, completely antithetical to our own, but it was certainly not Godless. Members of the SS were required to swear to belief in the Christian God. That is, they could not be atheists or agnostics. The Nazis strongly encouraged religious observance, provided chaplains to military units, came to agreements with religious authorities, and appealed to religious feelings. The Nazi was expected to serve the interests of his fellow men. It was just that “fellow-men” meant other “Aryan” people, and their interests were perceived as including prevention of what was thought of as “racial pollution”.

    If Nazism was, in this sense, highly moral, how could other political systems have combined to destroy it? What right had they?

    As Mae West remarked, goodness had nothing to do with it. Other societies saw Nazism as not simply immoral – that was almost irrelevant – but as a threat. The Allies bombed Europe flat, killed and suffered the killing of fifty million people, to remove that threat. Was that moral?

    Answer: yes. It was moral. As it turned out – although this was not true when war was declared – it redressed one of the worst tyrannies that ever existed. And the result? The war to prevent the hideous threat of a military dictator in control of most of Europe ended with as bad a dictator in control of much of it.

    And yet that war was still moral. The morality resided not in the destruction of a regime that had killed six million Jews, plus hundreds of thousands of other racial minorities, political dissidents and the disabled, but in the fact of self-defense. And that is moral, and most religions west of Quakerism and Jainism would accept that, but it preexisted independently of any of them.

    Ham is simply blowing smoke. There may be a very few general principles of fundamental morality, such as the right to self-defense, but mystical revelation is no guide to what is moral. Indeed, on performance it is to be thoroughly abjured.

  13. “Most people would agree that the abhorrent actions of the Nazi death camps were morally wrong.”
    Most people would agree that exterminating the entire human population (bar 8) with a Great Flood is equally morally wrong. Ol’ Hambo thinks it was a good thing – ‘cuz god. Any other reason can immediately applied to the Nazi death camps. So we get:
    Hitler behaving like Hitler: bad.
    God behaving like Hitler: good.

    @DaveL: the evidence for the counterargument has been found about 150 years ago..

    http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/human_evolution/2012/10/evolution_of_cooperation_russian_anarchist_prince_peter_kropotkin_and_the.html

    http://www.nature.com/scitable/blog/watching-the-detectives/peter_kropotkin_and_the_evolution

    Creacrappers don’t like this at all – it’s very effective when they bleat about “survival of the fittest” etc.

    If anyone wants to know more about Averagy Folly:

    http://thecreationclub.com/author/averyfoley/

    Nothing special.

  14. In the UK at least, the obvious moral superiority of acceptance towards homosexuals, as opposed to condemnation, has gone hand-in-hand with the rejection of religion. Ham is quite right to propose comparing the effects of religious belief on morality with those of disbelief. It is just that as always he comes up with the wrong answer to his own questions

  15. I was wondering how Hambo dealt with the fact that most of his flock doesn’t follow the old testament dietary laws. After all homosexuality is “an abomination” Lev. 20:13 but then again so is Lev. 11:12 “Whatsoever hath no fins nor scales in the waters, that shall be an abomination unto you.”
    The difference is subtle in that it only matters who is suffering the abomination.

    There is an essay by Hambo’s son-in-law explaining it away. Apparently God is free to change his mind, while we lowly men can’t. Laughable but read here:
    https://answersingenesis.org/christianity/christian-life/why-dont-christians-follow-all-the-old-testament-laws/

    My conclusion Hambo’s delusion is complete and very nuanced.

  16. docbill1351

    Just last night, July 12, on the NPR Ted Talk Radio Hour, the theme was animal behavior. One researcher studied moral behavior among animal groups and found moral behavior among dolphins, chimps, birds and several other groups. One interesting piece was on “reconciliation,” an important moral construct, and once he observed it in a chimp population (and, therefore, knew what to look for) he saw it happening all the time.

    One study that has been floating around the Internet recently involved two monkeys in adjacent cages asked to do a task and rewarded each with a piece of cucumber. Happy monkeys. Then, one monkey is given a more valuable treat, a grape. Soon the monkey denied the treat stopped doing the tasks, rattled his cage and got upset. Chimps, on the other hand, when given a superior treat would hold out until their cage mate got one, too, or even offered the treat to his buddy, demonstrating a sense of justice and equity.

    The researcher suggested that we are “hard-wired” for moral behavior that is beneficial to living in a group, and that the group behavior (societal forces) enhance or suppress those instincts. His final comment was that his research “raised” his understanding of moral behavior among other animals, and “lowered” the notion that humans were somehow exceptional, thus closing the moral (psychological, societal?) gap.

  17. Amazing! “Only the Bible provides a consistent foundation for morality that applies to all people everywhere.” Okay, so what exactly does this morality entail? The Ten Commandments ,,, such as “thou shalt not kill”? What else does the Bible say about this? Well there are literally millions of people killed in the Bible at the Order of Yahweh or by the Hand of Yahweh. So, apparently the Commandment is “Thou shalt not kill unless I say so.” This is why it is so necessary to have “God on our side” when we go to war.

    Then, well, is slavery wrong? Not according to the Bible. It is not only okay but regulated.

    It is hard to argue morality with someone who defines morality as “God” and “God” is defined any damned way he chooses (see Pat Robertson for additional evidence).

  18. Charles Deetz ;)

    @Steve Ruis says “slavery wrong? Not according to the Bible. It is not only okay but regulated.”

    Making the whole point … as slavery is inherently immoral and those doing so are going against our internal guide, one needs an external guide to keep it in check. The result is great internal conflict, as played out when Huckleberry Finn decides he won’t turn slave Jim in: “All right, then, I’ll GO to hell”.

  19. The Old Testament can be used as a pretty reliable guide to moral behavior. Just ask yourself, “In this situation, what would Yahweh do?” Then do the opposite.