|Type of paper:
|Law Christianity Public policy Conflict resolution
The relationship between religion and public law continues to be an important theme under political philosophy despite their conflicts. That is mainly through how religion makes strong claims concerning the people's allegiance, and most religions, especially Christianity, make such claims on the general population and not a specific community. That makes it evident that the Christian conscience will continue to conflict with public law. Nevertheless, most of the beliefs and practices performed by the Christians offer support to the public law in various ways, and the extent to which that support is offered leads to the possibilities for conflict. Therefore, it is important to discuss how the constitution is developed based on the sovereignty of man and not God, hence promoting conflicts between the Christian conscience and the public law and the controversies that arise as a result of that issue.
Sovereignty and its Controversies
Sovereignty is mainly associated with a key source of political power. God was initially the unquestionable sovereign and was considered as the divine right to rule. All that changed during the 17th century when Hugo Grotius introduced the man's sovereignty in politics and some of the secular legal concepts concerning the nation (Long, 2019). That resulted in the development of the social contract theory that was more focused on self-government. The theory was developed by some Enlightenment thinkers like Thomas Jefferson and John Locke. The development of the libertarian theory was considered radical due to the lack of distinction between religion and politics.
Many controversies have arisen as a result of the development of sovereignty. One of such controversies includes how the constitution is mainly based on man's sovereignty but not God concerning most of the political issues. Nevertheless, the First Amendment in the US Constitution prohibits the government from being involved in religious matters (Brett & Wolfe, 2020). Therefore, the constitution mandates the government to protect the freedoms of religion and speech. The Christians believe that God should remain sovereign in both the religion and public law, and there should be no form of separation between the two. That results in the use of religious law by most politicians in stifling political criticism.
Another controversy is that the social issue results in civil disobedience since God's laws are never considered perfect as the Christians perceive and are immutable. That results in an uneasy relationship between the Christian conscience and the public law in the US. That is mainly because of the requirements of the pervasive power of religion in the nation's politics held in check through the civil rights issued by the constitution. The nation is considered a religious nation because many people believe in the sovereignty in God's moral standards, which are supposed to be higher than the public law, which is also reflected by liberty in law.
Balancing the Personal Belief and the Law of the Land
Christians should remain neutral in their personal beliefs and the law of the land. Although there are different senses of neutrality, the implementation of some policies may have respect for one sense yet have poor respect towards others. While people are balancing their personal beliefs and the law of the land, they should not perceive the law's implementation as a form of disadvantaging one group. They should perceive the law as just and providing a politically desirable environment. The government would, therefore, be violating such neutrality through outlawing the Christians` worship.
People should consider balancing their personal beliefs and the law of the land by having a better understanding of its effects. In case the public law becomes more demanding, then the Christians require to consider some of the possible consequences, including either the short term or the long term. Christians should be focused on appraising some of the policies implemented by the government that does not have bad consequences as part of balancing their personal beliefs and public law (Fahey, 2020). It is arguably correct that the nation should maintain neutrality while developing the laws, and it should not make it challenging for religious people while preserve their ways of life.
Although sovereignty is considered increasing in most of the world's societies, the Christian conscience continues to play a significant political phenomenon in the world. That is why it is important to consider how the constitution is developed on man and God's sovereignty and how it promotes conflicts between the Christian conscience and the public law and some of the controversies that arise as a result of that issue. Therefore, a balance between the personal beliefs and the law of the land is necessary to pursue some of the arising controversies. Christians need to be more focused on appraising some of the policies implemented by the government that does not have bad consequences as part of balancing their personal beliefs and public law.
Brett, M. G., & Wolfe, N. (2020). Sovereignty: Indigenous Counter-Examples. International Journal of Public Theology, 14(1), 24-40. https://brill.com/view/journals/ijpt/14/1/article
Fahey, J. J. (2020). Catholic Conscience and Nuclear Weapons. The Journal of Social Encounters, 4(2), 42-49. https://digitalcommons.csbsju.edu/social_encounters/vol4/iss2/4/
Long, E. (2019). Mark Douglas McGarvie, Law and Religion in American History: Public Values and Private Conscience. Journal of American Studies, 53(2), 586-588. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/journal-of-american-studies
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