Walking in the Light of Oughtness

The Idol Babbler

The secular philosopher, David Hume, postulated that one cannot get an ought from an is. Meaning, just because something is, it doesn’t necessarily mean that that’s how it ought be. I get the sentiment… But I ask, on what grounds is this true?


Because if there is no God, as secular thinkers assume, then there does not exist any sense of what ought be, whatsoever. In other words, in order for oughtness to exist, there must be what Ravi Zacharias calls an ontic referent (a factual reference), or an ultimate authority from which oughtness is referenced or grounded. I think that this is what Hume was attempting to address, but in light of his worldview, there’s a major flaw. In Hume’s worldview, there is no God, there is no ultimate authority, there is no ontic referent. So, why should I even entertain his postulate? On what grounds should I take anything he says seriously? Because, according to his worldview, there is no grounding for anything that he proclaims, see? The ironic thing is though, Hume actually assumes what he is attempting to deny.


Because when Hume claims that one cannot get an ought from an is, Hume is then assuming that his claim is true. He is violating his own postulate by claiming truth. In other, words, he is attempting to proclaim a truth in a reality that he does not believe includes a grounding for truth. The irony of it is, is that David Hume cannot help but walk in the light of oughtness. He cannot help but attempt to identify oughtness, even while trying to deny it.


Because David Hume was an image bearer of God, and image bearers of God cannot help but image the God who created them to some degree. In other words, image bearers cannot fully escape image bearing…

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