Re: Religious Life/Professional Ethics

Ruth Douglas Miller (
Sun, 1 Feb 1998 22:11:08 -0600

From: "Dennis Feucht" <>:
>>I am somewhat bewildered by this thread on professional ethics in that the
>>drift seems to be that biblical ethics are strangely inadequate or
>>irrelevant to contemporary moral issues as faced by scientists and
>>engineers (professionals).
>>Can anyone pose a specific problem of professional morality for which the
>>Law of God has no relevance?
>>It seems as odd to me to be looking primarily to general revelation
>>(natural ethics) to find God's intentions for humanity as it is to look to
>>general revelation (nature) to establish grounds for his existence. The
>>value and specific purpose of special revelation (the Word of God) is that
>>we otherwise lack an adequate foundation on which to work out moral

I am in agreement with Dennis here; I teach engineering ethics, though
admittedly as the typical ignorant engineer speaking authoritatively on
matters in which I have no training, and I ask the students to think of any
"rule of life" that can't be traced back to the Golden Rule and/or the 10
Commandments. Ethics have to start somewhere!

I would submit, in response to the excellent post that started this thread,
that perhaps Xians have more difficulty responding to a difficult ethical
situation b/c we are too often encouraged to look at the world as black and
white, and have no training, in church or school, in how to deal with the
grey. Yet bringing full Christ-like thinking to most human situations
(what would Christ do here) _ought_ to bring most of us to paralysis, or we
do not see all the sides of the issue. This seeing all sides is the
hardest part, for me, to get students to do.

BTW, for you list regulars, I don't subscribe, I just read over my husband
Keith's shoulder. :-)


Ruth Douglas Miller
Assistant Professor
Electrical and Computer Engineering
261 Rathbone Hall, Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506-5204
ph: 913-532-4596
fx: 913-532-1188