instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Friday, August 22, 2008

It never hurts to be reminded

In the context of morality, "you may do this thing" implies "it is in keeping with God's will for you to do this thing."

In the same context, "evil" means "contrary to God's will."

So "you may do evil" implies "it is in keeping with God's will for you to do what is contrary to God's will."

"You may do evil," then, is literal nonsense. It remains nonsense even if you add the condition "that good may result."

Thus, "You may not do evil that good may result," isn't just Catholic teaching. It's a truth, even a tautology, that follows immediately from the very meaning of the words.

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