If God has the ultimate right to define what qualifies as “good” – as I have proposed/argued in The Fact of God – then that means that there is no standard that hangs over God with demands and stipulations that He is obligated to adhere to. God creates – or, better, IS – the Standard that everything subordinate to Him must measure up to.
Let us consider this concept of “IS” that I have just claimed as the implication of God’s right to define “goodness.” Is there anything in Scripture that would give us the idea that God acts in His creation in such a manor that would imply his fundamental goodness above that of anything in creation?
I would suggest to the reader that there is. Isaiah 55:8-9 is one such passage that I would say should cause us to pause in awesome wonder of the thrice Holiness and absolute Goodness of Yahweh.
And Scripture is replete with this concept of the high otherness of God’s very being, let alone His moral nature and omniscience.
In a later, more developed post I plan on examining what the effects or outworking of these ideas – God’s right to define goodness; which implies He is fundamentally Good – might be in regards to God’s creatures. But for now, I wish to make a few observations as to what these ideas imply to me.
- There is no reasonable sense in which we can even hypothetically attribute some moral wrong to God – unless it is upon grounds or in a manner that God uses in Holy Writ; Numbers 23:19… that being said, the instance of an “if/then statement” being reasonably used in a negative sense in regards to God is almost inconceivable.
- If God has the ultimate right of definition in regards to what is good, then He also has the definitive prerogative to determine what is bad or evil.
- Any being created by God that rejects His definitions can be categorized as fundamentally bad or evil. And God would have every right to do whatever He wishes to or with that rebellious creature; and whatever He decided to do would be good at its foundation.
These are only three of the most basic implications that I believe must logically follow from God’s “Right of Definition.” But I will leave it here, as further propounding of the subject would require philosophizing beyond the text of Scripture, and I would prefer to examine how this basic fact actually works itself out in reality.
So I will close by informing the reader that the next post on this topic will be examining Scripture to find some of what God has actually defined positively for His creatures.