Sunday, March 09, 2008

law -

Court, n.: A place where they dispense with justice.

You can make it illegal, but you can't make it unpopular.

Where would Christianity be if Jesus got eight to fifteen years with time off for good behavior? - New York State Senator James Donovan, speaking in support of capital punishment.

Fools and obstinate men make rich lawyers.--- Spanish. Proverb

We hold from God the gift which includes all others. This gift is life˜physical, intellectual, and moral life. But life cannot maintain itself alone. The Creator of life has entrusted us with the responsibility of preserving, developing, and perfecting it. In order that we may accomplish this, He has provided us with a collection of marvelous faculties. And He has put us in the midst of a variety of natural resources. By the application of our faculties to these natural resources we convert them into products, and use them. This process is necessary in order that life may run its appointed course. Life, faculties, production˜in other words, individuality, liberty, property˜this is man. And in spite of the cunning of artful political leaders, these three gifts from God precede all human legislation, and are superior to it. Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.Frédéric Bastiat wrote _The Law_

..because they had not obeyed my laws but had rejected my decrees...I also gave them over to statutes that were not good and laws they could not live by; - Ezek. 20:24,25 NIV

Satan, n. One of the Creator's lamentable mistakes, repented in sashcloth and axes. Being instated as an archangel, Satan made himself multifariously objectionable and was finally expelled from Heaven. Halfway in his descent he paused, bent his head in thought a moment and at last went back. "There is one favor that I should like to ask," said he. "Name it." "Man, I understand, is about to be created. He will need laws." "What, wretch! you his appointed adversary, charged from the dawn of eternity with hatred of his soul˜you ask for the right to make his laws?" "Pardon; what I have to ask is that he be permitted to make them himself." It was so ordered. -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"

To retain respect for sausages and laws, one must not watch them in the making.- Otto von Bismarck, 1815 - 1898

It is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer. - Sir William Blackstone (1723 &endash; 1780)

No enactment of man can be considered law unless it conforms to the law of God. ~Blackstone, Commentaries on the English Common Law

Upon these foundations, the law of nature and the law of revelation (Holy Scripture), depend all human laws; that is to say no human laws should be suffered to contradict these. WILLIAM BLACKSTONE

The law sends us to the gospel , that we may be justified, and the gospel sends us to the law again to enquire what is our duty, being justified. Samuel Bolton

Bad laws are the worst sort of tyranny. -- Edmund Burke

For the statement of some, that the law of God given through Moses is dishonored when it is abrogated and new laws preferred to it, is utterly vain. For others are not preferred to it when they are more approved, not by a simple comparison, but with regard to the condition of times, place, and nation; or when that law is abrogated which was never enacted for us. For the Lord through the hand of Moses did not give that law to be proclaimed among all nations and to be in force everywhere; but when he had taken the Jewish nation into his safekeeping, defense, and protection, healso willed to be a lawgiver especially to it; and -- as became a wise lawgiver -- he had special concern for it in making its laws.
John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion (Philadelphia, 1960)IV, xx, 16, p. 500

A lawsuit, however just, can never be rightly prosecuted by any man, unless he treat his adversary with the same love and good will as if the business under controversy were already amicably settled and composed. Perhaps someone will interpose here that such moderation is so uniformly absent from any lawsuit that it would be a miracle if any such were found. Indeed, I admit that, as the customs of these times go, an example of an upright litigant is rare; but the thing itself, when not corrupted by the addition of anything evil, does not cease to be good and pure. ... John Calvin (1509-1564), The Institutes of the Christian Religion

If men will not be governed by the Ten Commandments, they shall be governed by the ten thousand commandments.--G.K. Chesterton

When you break the big laws, you do not get liberty; you do not even get anarchy. You get the small laws. --G. K. Chesterton London _Daily News_ (7/29/1905)

The truth is, of course, that the curtness of the Ten Commandments is an evidence, not of the gloom and narrowness of a religion, but, on the contrary, of its liberality and humanity. It is shorter to state the things forbidden than the things permitted: precisely because most things are permitted, and only a few things are forbidden. ---G.K. Chesterton, ILN 1-3-20

We are slaves of the law in order that we may be able to be free. --Marcus Tullius Cicero

And there will not be different laws at Rome and at Athens, or different laws now and in the future, but one eternal and unchangeable law will be valid for all nations and for all times, and there will be one master and one rule, that is, God, over us all, for He is the author of this law, its promulgator, and its enforcing judge.- Cicero

For decades, liberal judges have advanced their agenda by arbitrarily declaring "rights" that defy the Western legal tradition, articulated so well by Cicero, Aquinas and Martin Luther King Jr., that just laws comport with God's laws. They have declared that peddling pornography, killing unborn babies and even same-sex marriage are "rights."
These are not rights, they are wrongs. For judges to enshrine them permanently in our law, they must first unthrone God -- and put themselves in His place.- Terence Jeffrey, Just barely under God,June 16, 2004,

Common law is common right. -. Edward Coke, as quoted by William Penn at his trial.

Men do not make laws. They do but discover them. Laws must be justified by something more than the will of the majority. They must rest on the eternal foundation of righteousness. You can display no greater wisdom than by resisting proposals for needless legislation. It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones.--Calvin Coolidge, _Have Faith in Massachusetts_ p.4

NECESSITY HATH NO LAW.-- OLIVER CROMWELl 1599-1658 Speech to Parliament, Sept. 1654.

A state is better governed which has few laws, and those laws strictly observed - Descartes

The one great principle of the English law is, to make business for itself. --Charles Dickens _Bleak House_ (1853)

I haven't committed a crime. What I did was fail to comply with the law. - David Dinkins (1927 &endash; ) US mayor (NYC), on accusations that he failed to pay taxes

I freely acknowledge that it is almost impossible systematically to constitute a natural moral law. Nature has no principles. She furnishes us with no reason to believe that human life is to be respected. Nature, in her indifference, makes no distinction between good and evil.
Anatole France, _La Revolte des anges_

In order to have a clear understanding of the Law of Moses and its relationship to the believer, it is necessary to view it as the Scriptures view it: as a unit that cannot be divided into parts that have been done away with and parts that have not.the Law in its totality no longer has authority over any individual - Arnold Fruchtenbaum: [Hebrew Christianity. p82-3].

The Law of Moses has been disannulled and we are now under a new law. This new law is called the Law of Christ.the Law of Christ contains many commandments similar to those found in the Mosaic Law.nine of the Ten Commandments are to be found in the Law of Christ. But this does not mean that the Law of Moses is still in force Arnold Fruchtenbaum: [HC. p86].

What are the consequences of this assault? Well, the idea that the person has inestimable value is just 'your view', not a principle to govern law. The idea that the unborn child must be protected or that older people deserve respect and honour becomes but a value preference, not an enduring truth. I want to be clear here. If Christianity is banished totally from public life, then the tentacles of the culture of death will spread still further. Break the link between Christianity and morality, you break the link between morality and law. The battle ground is the pro life debate. But the secular assault is starting new fronts. "Not the Church, not the State must decide a woman's fate" - you've heard the chants of the baby haters. My warning is that it has already added "Must decide what a family is" by extending the benefits of marriage to any kind of partnership. And it will soon add "... Must decide a child's schooling". Church schools watch out.- Ram Gidoomal ,"Karma, Politics and the Holy Spirit" - A Review of the CPA's Future, Address to the Catholic Charismatic Renewal Group, Saturday June 19th 224 Friends House, Euston

Only law can give us freedom.--Goethe

As mankind is made, the keeping it in order is an ill-natured office.-- Marquess of Halifax, _Political thoughts and reflections_,17th century

In all countries there has been fornication, as in all countries therehas been theft; but there may be more or less of the one, as well as the other, in proportion to the force of law. All men will naturally commit fornication, as all men will naturally steal. And, Sir, it is very absurd to argue, as has been often done, that prostitutes are necessary to prevent the violent effects of appetite from violating the decent order of life; nay, should be permitted, in order to preserve the chastity of our wives and daughters. Depend upon it, Sir, severe laws, steadily enforced, would be sufficient against those evils, and would promote marriage.--Samuel Johnson (Boswell: Life of Johnson)

A country is in a bad state, which is governed only by laws; because a thousand things occur for which laws cannot provide, and where authority ought to interpose. - Samuel Johnson (Boswell: Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides)

Qui custodiet ipsos custodes. Juvenal (loosely translated: "Who watches the watchmen?" literally:" Who will guard the guardians themselves?")

So, let me see if I got this right. Judge Moore was thrown out of office and smeared in all the media because he broke the law by displaying the Ten Commandments, but the SF mayor is a hero for breaking the law by passing out invalid wedding licenses to same-sex lovers. I'm surprised there isn't a major earthquake, caused by all the Founding Fathers, and most our ancestors up through the damned Sixties, spinning in their graves. - David C Kifer

In Romans 7, St. Paul says, "The law is spiritual." What does that mean? If the law were physical, then it could be satisfied by works, but since it is spiritual, no one can satisfy it unless everything he does springs from the depths of the heart. But no one can give such a heart except the Spirit of God, who makes the person be like the law, so that he actually conceives a heartfelt longing for the law and henceforward does everything, not through fear or coercion, but from a free heart.-- Martin Luther (1483-1546), "Preface to the Letter of St. Paul to the Romans"

I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and willingly accepts the penalty by staying in jail in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the very highest respect for law. King, Martin Luther, Jnr. (1929-1968)

Morality cannot be legislated, but behavior can be regulated. Judicial decrees may not change the heart, but they can restrain the heartless.
Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929-1968)_Strength to Love_ [1963]

Two things fill the mind with ever new increasing wonder and awe - the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me. Immanuel Kant

Laws and customs may be creative of vice; and should be therefore perpetually under process of observation and correction: but laws and customs cannot be creative of virtue: they may encourage and help to preserve it; but they cannot originate it. Harriet Martineau (1802-1876) In "Words of Women Quotations for Success," by Power Dynamics Publishing, 1997.

Say what you will about the Ten Commandments, you must always come back to the pleasant fact that there are only ten of them. Henry Lewis Mencken, 1880 - 1956

It is the fundamental theory of all the more recent American law...that the average citizen is half-witted, and hence not to be trusted to either his own devices or his own thoughts.-- H. L. Mencken

Laws can discover sin, but not remove it.-- John Milton

The observance of the divine laws constitutes the most effective preventative medicine against disease.
Rabbi Musk in I Jakobovits, Jewish Medical Ethics, Bloch, New York, 1975

The glory of the Gospel is, not that it destroys the law, but that it makes it cease to be a bondage; not that it gives us freedom from it, but in it; and the notion of the Gospel which I have been describing as cold and narrow is, not that of supposing Christianity a law, but a supposing it to be scarcely more than a law, and thus leaving us where it found us . . . They have not merely the promise of grace; they have its presence. They have not merely the conditional prospect of a reward; for a blessing, nay, unspeakable, fathomless, illimitable, infinite, eternal blessings are poured into their very hearts, even as a first step and an earnest from God our Saviour, of what He will do for those who love Him. They "are passed from death unto life," and are the children of God and heirs of heaven.
J H Newman Sermon: "The State of Grace," 1838. From Parochial and Plain Sermons, San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1987, pp. 816-817 (orig. 8 vols., 1834-1843)

When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators. -- P.J. O'Rourke

The world, indeed, seems to be weary of the just, righteous, holy ways of God, and of that exactness in walking according to His institutions and commands which it will be one day known that He doth require. But the way to put a stop to this declension is not by accommodating the commands of God to the corrupt courses and ways of men. The truths of God and the holiness of His precepts must be pleaded and defended, though the world dislike them here and perish hereafter. His law must not be made to lackey after the wills of men, nor be dissolved by vain interpretations, because they complain they cannot -- indeed, because they will not -- comply with it. Our Lord Jesus Christ came not to destroy the law and the prophets, but to fulfil them, and to supply men with spiritual strength to fulfil them also. It is evil to break the least commandment; but there is a great aggravation of that evil in them that shall teach men so to do.--John Owen (1616-1683), Sermons

It is not that we decry the significance of the law. God has established it for a purpose. But the subduing of sin is not its task. God did not design the law for that purpose. It is no dishonor if the law cannot do that which is not its proper task.(Romans 8:3). Thus we experience the faithful, constant preaching of the Word against sin in a church congregation for years on end. Yet we see no real effect of this on the lives of its members. These congregations actually proclaim the power of sin over the dispensation of the law! It is not the letter of The law but the efficacy of the spirit of god that truly matters. -- John Owen

That whatsoever Law of God, or Command of His, we find recorded in the Lawe-booke, in either volume of GODS Statute, the New Testament or the Old, Remains obligatory to us, unless we can prove it to be expired, or repealed.
Herbert Palmer, Member of the Westminster Assembly, 1647

Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.~Plato

Under a proper social system, a private individual is legally free to take any action he pleases (so long as he does not violate the rights of others), while a government official is bound by law in his every official act. A private individual may do anything except that which is legally forbidden; a government official may do nothing except that which is legally permitted." -- Ayn Rand, Objectivist Newsletter, December 1963

One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. --Thomas Brackett Reed

If we as a nation officially throw Christ off the throne of the nation and of the throne of the universe in our minds - who are we putting in His place? Whose word is going to be our law? - Andrew Rowell

Do we need more laws? God forbid! We need more righteousness, more freedom, and more godly men -- and fewer laws. R.J. Rushdoony

Now, our increasingly humanistic laws, courts, and legislators are giving us a new morality. They tell us, as they strike down laws resting upon Biblical foundations, that morality cannot be legislated, but what they offer is not only legislated morality but salvation by law, and no Christian can accept this. Wherever we look now, whether with respect to poverty, education, civil rights, human rights, peace, and all things else, we see laws passed designed to save man. Supposedly, these laws are going to give us a society free of prejudice, ignorance, disease, poverty, crime, war, and all other things considered to be evil. These legislative programs add up to one thing: salvation by law." R. J. Rushdoony

Man is not answerable to an abstract law, but to God. Behind the law is the Lawgiver. Therefore, to find fault with the law is to find fault with the Lawgiver. The law is not the arbitrary edicts of a capricious despot, but the wise, holy loving precepts of one who is jealous for His glory and for the good of His people. Ernest Reisinger "Law and Gospel"

God has given us rules not because He is arbitrary, but because the rules... are fixed in His own character.... Thus, when we sin we break the law of God... in the direction of destroying what we really are. FRANCIS SCHAEFFER

It follows from [Samuel] Rutherford's thesis that citizens have a moral obligation to resist unjust and tyrannical government. While we must always be subject to the office of the magistrate, we are not to be subject to the man in that office who commands that which is contrary to the Bible. Rutherford suggested that there are three appropriate levels of resistance: First, he must defend himself by protest (in contemporary society this would most often be by legal action); second, he must flee if at all possible; and third, he may use force, if necessary, to defend himself. One should not employ force if he may save himself by flight; nor should one employ flight if he can save himself and defend himself by protest and the employment of constitutional means of redress. Rutherford illustrated this pattern of resistance from the life of David [fleeing from King Saul] as it is recorded in the Old Testament. The civil government, as all life, stands under the law of God...when any [political] office commands that which is contrary to the Word of God, those who hold that office abrogate their authority and they are not be obeyed. Justice is] based on God's written Law, back through the New Testament to Moses' written Law; and the content and authority of that written Law is rooted back to Him who is the final reality. Thus, neither church nor state were equal to, let alone above, that Law. The base for Law is not divided, and no one has the right to place anything, including king, state or church, above the contents of God's Law.
Francis August Schaeffer; his Christian Manifesto

Ignorance of the law excuses no man; not that all men know the law, but because it is an excuse every man will plead, and no man can tell how to confute him. John Selden (1584-1654)

Judge Willis: What do you suppose I am on the Bench for, Mr Smith?
F E Smith: It is not for me, Your Honour, to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence.

Laws are like spiders' webs which, if anything small falls into them they ensnare it, but large things break through and escape.
Solon quoted by Diogenes Laertius c. AD 225

The more corrupt the State the more numerous the laws. -- Cornelius Tacitus

I came across some of my father's loose sermon notes slipped into the back of my sixth form chemistry exercise book.
"Men, nations, races or any particular generation cannot be saved by ordinances, power, legislation. We worry about all these things, and our faith becomes weak and faltering. But all these things are as old as the human race - all these things confronted Jesus 2,000 years ago...This is why Jesus had to come."
My father lived these convictions to the end. .- Margaret Thatcher, The Path to Power, Harper Collins,1995, p164

Some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find a trout in the milk.- Henry David Thoreau (1817 &endash; 1862)

Any fool can make a rule
And every fool will mind it.
H. D. Thoreau, Journal, 3 Feb. 1860

By Revolution ideas I mean the basic maxims of liberty and equality, popular sovereingty, social contract, the artificial reconstruction of society by common consent - notions which today are venerated as the cornerstone of constitutional law and the political order....The consequences of the Revolution ideas cannot be combatted with any success unless one places himself outside their influence, on the ground of the anti-revolutionary principles. This ground is beyond reach, however, so long as one refuses to acknowledge that the foundation of justice lies in the law the ordinances of God. Bonald has expressed this truth in the concise and pregnant words, 'The Revolution began with the declaration of the rights of man; it will end only with the declaration of the rights of God.'
(Our subject) strikes at the heart of current controversies in religion and politics. The Revolution doctrine is unbelief applied to politics. A life and death struggle is raging between the Godspel and this practical atheism. To contemplate a rapproachment between the two would be nonsense. It is a battle which embraces everything we cherish and hold sacred and everything that is beneficial and indipensable to church and state....
One last comment, for all of us Christians. The Revolution ought to be viewed in the context of world history. Its significance for Christendom equals that of the Reformation, but then in reverse. The Reformation rescued Europe from superstition; the Revolution has flung the civilized world into an abyss of unbelief. Like the Reformation, the Revolution touches every filed of action and learning. In the days of the Reformation the principle was submission to God; in these days it is a revolt against God. This is why there rages again today one universal war in church, state, and the world of learning, one holy battle over the supreme question: to submit unconditionally to the law of God, or not.-- Groen Van Prinsterer , Unbelief and Revolution

A multitude of laws in a country is like a great number of physicians, a sign of weakness and malady.- Voltaire

The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.
President George Washington, First Inaugural Address, April 30, 1789.

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