Against Extreme Divine Command Theory

William of Auxerre gives this brief but effective argument against the theory that actions are evil merely because God prohibits them:

Cum prohibitio sit ipse Deus prohibens, Deus ipse esset causa malitie in actione; quod absit.

“Since God’s prohibition [of an action] is just God himself prohibiting [the action], God Himself would be the cause of the evil in an action; which can’t be allowed.”

(Summa Aurea Book 2, Treatise 11, Chapter 3, Question 3)


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