Euthyphro dilemma

The Euthyphro dilemma is often brought up when discussing morality and ethics.

The Euthyphro dilemma is found in Plato’s dialogue Euthyphro, in which Socrates asks Euthyphro, “Is the pious (τὸ ὅσιον) loved by the gods because it is pious, or is it pious because it is loved by the gods?” (10a)

Although it was originally applied to the ancient Greek pantheon, the dilemma has implications for modern monotheistic religions. Gottfried Leibniz asked whether the good and just “is good and just because God wills it or whether God wills it because it is good and just”. Ever since Plato’s original discussion, this question has presented a problem for some theists, though others have thought it a false dilemma, and it continues to be an object of theological and philosophical discussion today.

It is commonly cited by skeptics as a reason why theism cannot justify objective morality.

Euthyphro’s Dilemma remains one of the most powerful and interesting objections to a theistic conception of morality. … s-for-god/

To begin with, God would not be able to provide objectivity, as the argument from Euthyphro demonstrates. … thout-god/

Baggini regards the Euthyphro Dilemma as a powerful argument against the idea that God or the gods are the source of morality.

I’d disagree it’s a powerful argument against Judaism or Christianity. From the Judeo-Christian perspective, it’s a false dilemma.

Good and just is neither created by God nor a precedent to God. Good and just is a nature of God.

Jonathan Sacks wrote, “In Judaism, the Euthyphro dilemma does not exist.” Jewish philosophers Avi Sagi and Daniel Statman criticized the Euthyphro dilemma as “misleading” because “it is not exhaustive”: it leaves out a third option, namely that God “acts only out of His nature.”

“God is not merely good, but goodness; goodness is not merely divine, but God.”
C.S. Lewis … ne-but-God

As stated in 1 John, God is love.

[1Jo 4:8 KJV] 8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

[1Jo 4:16 KJV] 16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.

For Christians, the basis of objective morality is God, who is by nature good. The commandments of God are not good because God decreed them to be good, but because God is good.

Humans have a sense of objective morality because we’ve been created in the image of God. Humans reflect the nature of God, including His goodness. Since animals have not been created in the image of God, they do not possess morality.

Because of the fall, we are prone to sin, but we all still possess an innate sense of objective morality. Even evil people have an internal sense of right and wrong. For example, criminals in prisons have their code of ethics, the inmate code.

So the Euthyphro dilemma is not applicable to the Judeo-Christian view of God. Good is a nature of God and is neither created nor preexistent. And since humans are created in the image of God, we all have an innate sense of what is good and right.