Friday, January 12, 2018

Ethical questions - law keeping

I am no antinomian nor a legalist. The threefold division of Mosaic law into moral, national and ceremonial is of value. The moral is repeated in the New Covenant scripture with room for diversity on how the fourth commandment is observed. The ceremonials fulfilled in Christ and is gone. The nationals gone as law of any land but the general equity remaining as the Westminster Confession teaches.
   But what of man's law. It should be based on Biblical principles of equity and morality. But even when it is not we are to render to Caesar due obedience. But when Cesar's laws are fiat laws with no basis other than whatever legislators think fit, yes we are to obey. If not we must be prepared to suffer the temporal consequences if we are apprehended and found guilty as charged.
   But is such a breach of the law of the land a sin? I have my doubts. If the law says all church members must give consent for their names to be published on a list circulated to members only and the church fails to comply is their sin? Yes, breach of the law. Let the enforcers enforce if they have the will but I see no sin in ignoring red tape.
   Then what about where Caesar wants to stick his nose into church matters? In a past decade our church was told that to be registered for legal marriages we had to make the church flat a residence only for the minister's family. We refused.
   If the government was to tell us it must inspect our youth work lest we be radicalising our children I trust we would refer them to that local place of worship where such things may happen pointing out it is not a building with a cross on or in it.

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