As a Catholic I believe that God wants us to know with certainty if any given action is morally, objectively right or wrong and that He reveals this to us in various ways.

I would like to know what scriptural evidence supports this concept. Answers should not be concerned with mitigating factors specific to an individual's circumstances. Only with whether God desires for us to know what is objectively right and wrong with certainty.

  • I would agree that many actions are clearly morally right or wrong. And I do think God wants us to know which is which. However, Proverbs 26:4-5 reads thus: "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest you be like him yourself. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes." Well, which is it? Answer a fool, or don't answer a fool? The answer is that we must have wisdom to discern which is the better action in any given circumstance. Aug 7, 2013 at 12:18
  • Isaiah 30:21 ('Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it."' [NIV]) would apply to specific actions.
    – user3331
    Aug 7, 2013 at 12:31
  • Adrian, that is an interesting passage that I would love to explore more, but that also doesn't seem to be a moral decision. My question is specifically about the moral correctness of any action.
    – brader24
    Aug 7, 2013 at 12:38
  • There's quite a lot in the Catechism [at that link and following pages]. But I think the objective knowledge is given at Creation: Man was made in the image of God. Aug 7, 2013 at 13:37

4 Answers 4


I got these two verses that I hope help you out:

James 4:17 ESV So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.

Isaiah 5:20 ESV Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!


Here are a few scriptures to start from.

  • be as gods, knowing good and evil: Gen. 3:5
  • knowledge rather than choice gold: Prov. 8:10
  • because thou hast rejected knowledge: Hosea 4:6
  • To give knowledge of salvation unto his people: Luke 1:77
  • How shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? Rom. 10:14
  • riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God: Rom. 11:33
  • I would not have you ignorant: Rom. 1:13 . ( 1 Cor. 10:1 ; 1 Cor. 12:1 ; 2 Cor. 1:8 ; 1 Thes. 4:13 . )
  • I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly: 1 Tim. 1:13
  • Who can have compassion on the ignorant: Heb. 5:2
  • For this they willingly are ignorant: 2 Pet. 3:5

Unfortunately, I have to go now.


There are deeds which are displeasing to God and have spiritual consequences:

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God... Romans 3:23

So, yes, there are deeds which are objectively wrong, say, drunkenness and pornography. However, whether there are deeds that are objectively right, or are not riddled with opportunities for sin, is another matter.

All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. Isaiah 64:6

For example, if you decide not to get drunk & watch porn on a Saturday, but instead go volunteer at a soup kitchen, that is a good choice. One cannot however make the assumption that the shelter gives you any less opportunities for sin: pride, unlove, lust, impatience, judging, etc. Your righteous act is like a filthy rag.


Yes he wants us to know what is right and wrong, and encourages to in 1 Kings 9:

The request to stand for good morals:

verse 4 And if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, in integrity of heart, and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded thee, and wilt keep my statutes and my judgments:

The promise if you do:

verse 5 Then I will establish the throne of thy kingdom upon Israel for ever, as I promised to David thy father, saying, There shall not fail thee a man upon the throne of Israel.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .