This is the second article regarding “Natural Law” the link below is to the first article.
I hope to look at the confusion that falls within Christianity pertaining to the thing called Natural Law. Christians when asked if Natural Law reflects God’s glory will quickly say, “Yes”. This quick response forces the thought of God’s glory and puts forth the image of His glory in the Cosmos and therefore natural law automatically must hinge on Him. Christians think “Natural Law” is a sub-set of Biblical Law and will be binding on all man as is the Bible. This thing that Christian men call Natural Law; think all men will be subservient to God and Natural Law, and as the Christian thinks, Natural Law can only lead to serious misgivings and is a mistake on the Christian’s part to not understand from were the atheist is coming from and were he will go..
Natural Law foundations go back to the ancient Greeks as they develop their Philosophy. The philosophical development came into being on two varying foundations; one was “Materialistic” and was apposed to the Reformation and it’s anchoring of the Christian religious beliefs on Puritan Theology and the reformers of the 1500’s and 1600’s. This materialistic view fell outside the conventional religion of Western Civilization.
Greek Natural Law prime axioms were (1) That nature dictated the reality of things (2) Man was an animal (3) Truth was changeable and could changed with time. Because of these foundational principles there was no place for a God and creator of the Cosmos, or anything that reflected the higher authority in law and God’s order as written in the Bible. Natural Law was part of nature without a God and was something to be reasoned through by man.
The second view running parallel in Greek materialistic philosophy was the idealistic tradition of Natural Law. The so called “Forms” of Aristotle and Plato, were within the realm of ideas and metaphysical thought we had these ideas and forms falling outside the material world of change and where in and of themselves eternal not subject to change.
Ethics, morals and right actions (Laws) coming from man could always through idealistic traditions (Forms and Thoughts) be found out. Man is and therefore man knows what he ought to do. Materialism and Idealism come together under Greek thinking called “Natural Law”.
We see quickly Natural Law drifted from man’s view of the Cosmos as it should be under God into something that hinges on man and his development of Materialism, reason and logic. We have not the awesome magnificence’s of God’s glory driving the understanding of natural law but man stealing the natural order of things, thinking he is supreme through reason and logic. Man has twisted the order into some process whereby man will dictate order, through his understanding of the Cosmos.
Man’s “Natural Law” has no room for any of the Doctrines found within the Bible or those wonders which might be interpreted through the natural law of God’s Cosmos. The Biblical natural law has been hijacked by the enlightenment and completely revamped and brought back to present day man using the initial philosophy of the Greeks.
If today’s Christians are to enter into debate regarding God’s law they had best stay clear of natural law and stick with the Bible and Biblical interpretations