Journal of Religious Ethics 10 (2):335 - 350 (1982)

It is sometimes thought that belief in God is rationally required of human beings, for without such a religious belief moral beliefs are without any appropriate ground or rationale. Some have argued that in a Godless world we have no grounds for being persons of good will or for doing what is morally required of us. Indeed, nothing in such a world is morally required of us. If there is no God the concept of moral requiredness becomes a Holmesless Watson. A variety of grounds for such a conception of the relation of religion to morality are explored and shown to be unsatisfactory. To make sense of life or to make sense of morality, belief in God is not necessary. Indeed, only if we do have some autonomous appreciation of morality can we even understand the concept of God embedded in the Judeo-Christian-Islamic tradition.
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