Thursday, 3 October 2013

What is 'a Christian society'? - the example of a supreme court


I get the feeling that those on the secular Right see 'a Christian society' as one which makes everybody go to church and recite oaths in which they don't believe - sets fire to heretics...  that kind of stuff.

Well, that is not what I mean.

A quick explanation could be seen from an example of a ruling coming up to the supreme court - the court has to decide whether to support the ruling of a lower court, or overturn it.

How do they decide?

Well, supposedly they consider the coherence of the whole body of law and which ruling bests sustains it. However, that is clearly untrue, because supreme courts again and again make decisions which - over time - re-make the whole body of law and either move it towards a new kind of coherence, or else render it just plain incoherent.

(For example 'hate crime' laws are simply nonsense, in a legal sense, and eat away at the rest of the legal system like cancers.)

So how do supreme courts decide?

Well a Christian supreme court would look at the alternatives from the Christian perspective - in other words they would ask 'which ruling is best to sustain the Christian life?'

A non-Christian supreme court would not take this into account, but would use some other criterion for deciding.

And THAT is an example of a Christian society - when the primary and ultimate social decisions are made from a primarily Christian system of evaluation.