The Broad Array of Moral Concepts 1

If the Bible and Christians contend that Jesus Christ is the blemish-free, Passover Lamb of God sacrifice for mankind’s sins…that He was perfect and without sin during His life and ministry on earth…by what or by whose standard do we judge the existence of perfect moral character?

How would we determine that the life of Jesus was at the outer edge of moral perfection…at the peak and the pinnacle of absolute goodness and virtue…having no additional room or space at the highest top-most point of the vertical, graduated spectrum-line of virtue and morality …for further improvement?

What would explain the existence of the diverse categories of moral criteria…defining virtue…of the numerous moral concepts broken down into individual words…accessible to human contemplation…that would enable and support a valid determination of the moral credentials of Jesus Christ?

And finally, where would our highly-advanced capacity to comprehend…to divide, separate-out, and parse these varied conceptual virtues and vices…consisting of finely differentiated realities that are true-to-life?  Where would these originate from?

Yet by simply asking the question and examining the evidence…this in and of itself declares at the outset that Jesus…the person we are investigating…is in fact within the zone of moral perfection and sinless virtue…by reason of the question being seriously entertained at all.

We would not even open such an investigation into the life of any other exceptional person…past or present…because we already correctly acknowledge that only one person in all of history has made a serious claim to have lived a perfect life…and that one person is Jesus Christ.

No sane person in all of recorded history has made a viable and well-substantiated claim to embody and demonstrate the moral attributes of brilliant pure light, absolute goodness, and perfect virtue…of being, speaking, and acting like a Deity…proactively anticipated for centuries in the biblical Old Testament messianic prophecies…and documented and fulfilled later in the life, teaching, and ministry of Jesus Christ…recorded in the New Testament gospels.

This raises the probing apologetics question into the divine origin of the Bible, Old Testament Judaism, and New Testament Christianity…of how…in the first place…we would “come by” the capacity to accurately judge whether the life and ministry of Jesus Christ exhausts the extent of the possible outer-limits of moral perfection.

How would we determine that our current tool-kit of known virtuous characteristics…of well-defined moral attributes…is absolutely exhaustive, adequate, and complete enough for the in-depth moral reasoning needed to evaluate the life of Jesus Christ?

How would we know whether there are not some additional, outstanding moral characteristics that we are unaware of in this current earthly context…above and beyond those demonstrated and exemplified in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ…that would raise the bar higher…that would call into question the impeccable qualifications of Jesus…to be the blemish-free and sinless atoning sacrifice for our sins?

The point here is not whether God has some additional, divine characteristics applicable in heaven…that would not concern us presently…that are not relevant here on earth…but whether or not Jesus the Son of God in a human body (Isa. 7:14, 9:6-7)…exhausts the limits of moral perfection as the God/man in order to qualify as the Passover Lamb of God, one-time atoning sacrifice for sin?

But the equally important point in this discussion is the fantastic notion that we would have the moral reasoning tools…in terms of human capacity but also in the broad array of concepts defined in discreet and distinctive words…to be able to make a valid decision for or against salvation faith in Jesus Christ…at this highly advanced level.

The mere existence of this question blows-away the key element of naturalistic materialism…the element of gradualistic development…out of the water…because of the easily recognizable wealth of complex and finely differentiated concepts defining moral characteristics…that are a fundamental and established part of the human reasoning capacity from the dawn of human history.

The critical human invention of writing…as the tell-tale indicator of human intellectual progress…is dated to as recent a time as 3,200 B.C. in the wedge-shaped cuneiform lettering of Egyptian hieroglyphs, in the cuneiform alphabet in Syria around 2,000 B.C., and in the 22-sign Phoenician alphabet dated around 1,000 B.C.

The Greeks adopt the Phoenician writing script around 800 B.C.

The invention of human writing…of widespread, functional written communication…that locks into time-and-place the human capacity for mature and fully developed moral reasoning…starts only 5,200 years ago.

We do not have to be a professional anthropologist, sociologist, paleontologist, biologist, or historian to know that there exist no contemporary, eye-witness, written accounts by human authors of the retreat of the Ice-Age glaciers covering the northern continents of America and Europe…starting around 12,000 to 10,000 B.C.

There are no written, eye-witness accounts…by the actual participants…of humans battling wholly mammoths or saber-toothed tigers…during the Pleistocene Ice-Age time-period…prior to the invention of writing.

Are we then to uncritically swallow whole the theoretical paradigm of gradualistic development…as an explanation for the origin of sophisticated and discreetly defined moral characteristics…proposed by the atheistic philosophy of naturalistic materialism…in support of Darwinian macroevolution?

Words have meaning.

Is Albert Einstein more intelligent in terms of higher I.Q. than Isaac Newton, or Leonardo Di Vinci, or Aristotle, or the Egyptian engineers who built the Great Pyramids…going backwards in time?

The great advances in recent history that define the modern Scientific Revolution and the two major Industrial Revolutions are not the product of gradual improvements in the evolution of human mental capacity.

These rapid advances of development are the product of the progressing accumulations of information…spawned by the discovery of the scientific method of investigation.

Einstein is not smarter than Aristotle simply because Einstein comes along later in the historical time-line than Aristotle.  Positive progression over time in human intelligence is not a factor as an explanation for the advancements of learning, technology, and the very recent explosive expansion of knowledge over the last three to four decades…called the new Information Age.

The mental capacity to technologically problem-solve at the advanced level to take us to the moon in 1969…and the moral reasoning capacity to differentiate and comprehend complex moral concepts…are two realities that define the essence of human beings.

The point here is that human beings possess a complete and exhaustive array of tools within the broad assortment of moral concepts …from which to make an intelligent and reasoned judgment as to the divine quality of the life and ministry of Jesus Christ.

Is it therefore more plausible…to recognize that the origin of the entire array and panoply of moral characteristics…appearing suddenly, fully developed in scope and range, and without precursors at the beginning of human cognitive reasoning…front-loaded and operable within human experience that would roughly be concurrent with the invention of writing…that this recognition represents a sharp vertical upward spike on any conceivable graph-line for the time-duration of the human race…and not anything like gradualistic development?

From A Popular Defense of the Bible and Christianity.

Author: Barton Jahn

I worked in building construction as a field superintendent and project manager. I have four books published by McGraw-Hill on housing construction (1995-98) under Bart Jahn, and have seven Christian books self-published through Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). I have a bachelor of science degree in construction management from California State University Long Beach. I grew up in Southern California, was an avid surfer, and am fortunate enough to have always lived within one mile of the ocean. I discovered writing at the age of 30, and it is now one of my favorite activities. I am currently working on more books on building construction.

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